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Ignorance In The Crucible

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Ignorance is a trait that plagues the world today. Whether intended or not, every person has some form of ignorance on a subject. In today’s society, we are sometimes required to make decisions on subjects that we have ignorance on. John Proctor’s fate and Miller’s idea of society and a tragic hero are used to demonstrate the dangers of false knowledge to convey that decisions made from ignorance lead to corruption and manipulation. Corruption and manipulation are common trends in Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible. When crisis surfaced in the town of Salem, citizens leaped at the opportunity of salvation. The corruption and manipulation became prominent once this issue arose. When Abigail Williams is accused of witchcraft, she yells, “I want…show more content…
The ideas presented in The Crucible tie back to how we act in reality. In “Ignorance, Unconsciousness, And Responsibility”, Antecedent ignorance is defined, stating, “If the particular missing fact or circumstance were known, then the agent would not have performed the action, but there is no reason why the agent should have that knowledge” (Morris 214). Decisions made with ignorance occur all the time, but the choice and outcome would have been different if the decision-maker was informed. Since most of the characters in The Crucible were misinformed, they were vulnerable to the manipulation and their decisions were poorly made. Since people are impotent to make certain decisions while being manipulated in such a way, their choices lead to corruption, whether they desired that outcome or not. This then brings up the fact that, “Antecedent ignorance impedes the freedom of the agent’s choice” (Morris 214). This impacts individuals, since their choices are not made by their own free will, but the influence of false…show more content…
Proctor was a direct victim of the damages ignorance caused in the town of Salem. In the play, when John Proctor is accused of witchcraft, Danforth states, “You are combined with the anti-Christ, are you not? I have seen your power, you will not deny it! What say you, mister?” (Miller 119). Since the townsfolk were manipulated into the ideas of witchcraft in Salem, they blindly believed statements from citizens. This situation had caused John Proctor to be arrested and, since he would not submit himself to the ignorance of the town, ultimately led to his demise. In "Tragedy and the Common Man”, Miller states that “tragedy...is the consequence of a man’s total compulsion to evaluate himself justly” (Miller 1). Since Proctor’s tragic flaw was his pride, he was unwilling to submit himself to the information he knew to be false, and the decisions that were made brought him to his end, The decisions that were made directly affected John Proctor’s character, making him a victim of the manipulation and corruption in
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