How Does Arthur Miller Present Hysteria In The Crucible

707 Words3 Pages
Hysteria in Salem The Crucible is a play written by American author, Arthur Miller, in 1953. It is a somewhat fictional play about the Salem Witch Trials. Miller wrote it as an allegory to the Red Scare, the promotion of fear of a potential rise of communism. Miller himself was blacklisted for refusing to testify in front of the HUAC, a committee that was created to investigate any person who might be a communist. Miller addresses a similar hysteria throughout his play. In The Crucible, there are many characters that feed into or contribute to the rapid spread of witch hysteria in the small village of Salem. The two characters that could have ended the mass hysteria are Abigail Williams and Deputy Governor Danforth. Throughout the play Abigail proves to be a fundamental character in the preservation of the hysteria. Abigail, a teenage girl adopted by Reverend Parris, is the main source of information to the court, and they…show more content…
He believes strongly in his ability to judge the character of the informants. This comes into play when others question his judgement of Abigail and the girls from the woods. Danforth has a great deal of authority over the verdict of the accused, he has the power to judge them as not guilty. Danforth being the primary judge means he could have admitted to his foolishness and told the community that the accused people were not witches, and it would have made the townspeople believe that there was no witch problem in Salem at all. Danforth is too concerned with his reputation to admit that his judgement, at first, was clouded. Many ask for his mercy towards the accused and he denies it to them to keep his reputation, “... Postponement now speaks floundering on my part...” (Miller 667). This shows that Danforth could have ended the hysteria in Salem by admitting that he does not believe that any of the accused are guilty and claiming the accused not
Open Document