According to founding father Thomas Paine, “Reputation is what men and women think of us; character is what God and angels know of us” (“Reputation”). Whether individuals readily admit it or not, everyone cares about what others think or say about them to some extent. Though people are constantly told to not take to heart what others believe about them, they still do. In Arthur Miller’s drama, The Crucible, Salem’s society is collapsing and innocent characters are taking action because their reputation is at stake due to the false accusations of involving themselves in witchcraft. These characters live in such fear that if their pride is tarnished they will never recover from it.
Imagine being an African American living down South during the 1930’s, when racial discrimination was a huge thing. Why were these African Americans so hated and discriminated? It was the way these people grew up in their setting, or even the way the setting raised them, to automatically view these colored people different and not equal towards them. The place in which people are raised in give them these characteristics and social beliefs, so they are not used to anything outside of their social norm. In the novel, “The Crucibles”, by Arthur Miller, the characters living there had a very vague and straight forward way of living life, and if anyone was seen to be doing something different or unusual, they would automatically be accused of witchcraft.
Most of the characters’ actions and behavior was due to what they thought the community would think of them; this was because of their religious ways. In the very beginning of “The Crucible” Reverend Parris is described as a greedy person who cares about how much he has. So when Parris spotted his niece, Abigail, and his daughter dancing in the forest, he failed to tell anyone what he saw. I believe this was because he was afraid that if the community thought there was witchcraft in his household, he would lose his position as minister of Salem. So when it came up in the court he lied about it
The accused citizens of Salem are all innocent. Elizabeth denies all belief in witchcraft because she has a pure soul, and she is a well-respected citizen of the village. Sarah Good is a homeless woman who confessed to witchcraft just to save her. John Proctor is an honorable man who has ethics and has never severely wronged anyone in his life. These people are the most noble and well- respected people of Salem.
In the mist of February 1692, the small Puritan village, Salem, was anything but upbeat with trepidation on the rise. As girls whom knew not of the consequences that laid behind their actions, they repeatedly shouted out the names of people whom displeased them. This resulted in turmoil and one of the vital characters came to light. John Proctor, a mere farmer, had built himself up to be a man of honor through his family and friends. Little did they know, Proctor had a secret life which is simply the beginning of his selfish demonstrations of his own morality.
Shawn Jande Ms. Clancy American Literature B3 15 November 2015 The Crucible Analytical Essay Imagine, being accused of a crime you didn’t commit by your neighbors and friends out of jealousy, and desire. This is what many people in the town of Salem had to go through during the time of the Salem Witch Trials. People's motives such as: gaining and maintaining power, and aspirations for what other people had caused them to make irrational, and atrocious decisions. In The Crucible by Arthur Miller, desire and power drive characters to create chaos in the community.
John Proctor illustrates that he is an ethical man because he highlights the fact that young girls, children, are controlling Salem purely with their words. Proctor 's ethical attributes are conveyed when he realizes that the group of accusers may be pretending to be afflicted, “I’ll tell you what’s walking Salem – vengeance is walking Salem. We are what we always were in Salem, but now the little crazy children are jangling the keys of the kingdom, and common vengeance writes the law!” (73) which causes other to question his credibility. He also speaks this to emphasize the problem that everyone assumes that the accusers, children, are innocent.
John Proctor openly disapproves off the witch trials, he tries to save his wife Elizabeth, and he refuses to condemn others to death even if he can go free. John does selfless acts through out the story, which proves John Proctor is morally good. John Proctor openly disapproves of the witch trials of Salem. He says from the start that he does not believe in witches and that Reverend Hale is wasting his time. He seems to be on of the only people who stand up for the innocents that are being killed.
Certain crimes such as: Adultery, Murder and Theft, during the Puritan era were always diagnosed as inhumane and ruined a person's reputation, despite any attempt of redemption. Proctor’s crime of adultery is a key element in the starting of the salem witch trials and the devastating end. Proctors situation alternates throughout the novel consistently by other villagers and even Proctor himself. His crime at first is tried to be subdued by himself then it is later used as evidence in a trial and finally it is used as a confession however it ultimately is not believed. To begin Proctor first tries to hide is crime from the other villagers however Abigail seems to want to expose their relationship.
The pursuit of power outweighs moral motives causing the manipulation of fear and its detrimental consequences. In The Crucible, Miller represents the dangers political power poses to individuals that are manipulated with fear for political gain through the parallel of the 17th century Salem Witch Trials to the 20th century McCarthy trials. In both contexts individuals experience social injustice as a result of political wrongdoing. Salem “developed a theocracy… to keep the community together” whose fundamental purpose was to guarantee that individuals in society adhere to a moral code of conduct. However, this theocracy enabled religious individuals to further their motive of power by dictating the lives of others. Miller’s characterisation
One example of this is the hysteria of McCarthyism in the 1950s. Many people are filled with fear of the Communists and accuse many innocent people. The accused must then say who else they know are involved, and this allows the hysteria to spread and leads to chaos. Another example of this in everyday life is terrorism. Many people in today’s society allow the extreme fear of a terrorist attack to control their actions and perceptions.
People believed McCarthy. People in Salem believed the books. This just further shows how unjust both the courts were in those times. Briefly into Act 2 at the Proctor household, after questioning John Proctor, John tells Hale that the girls are lying. Hale believes "I have myself examined Tituba, Sarah Good, and numerous others that have confessed to dealing with the Devil.
In The Crucible, the normal social and moral order is completely inverted. Salem was a secluded village in Massachusetts that was a strict, theocratic, hierarchical, patriarchal society where power and morality were two incredibly important aspects within the community. The men of Salem held all of the political power in the community and their rule was strengthened not only by the law but also by the hypothetical approval of God. However, the Salem witch trials empowered several individuals in The Crucible who were formerly marginalized and powerless and similarly inverted the normal moral order in Salem by forcing the characters in the play to make a decision between adhering to or abandoning their fundamental morals in order to survive or
The first impressive characteristic of John Proctor is his bravery. Speaking out against the “afflicted” girls in the way he did could cause serious question of him as a person. From the court’s standpoint John could be seen as directly opposing the court, which would have him jailed, or could even have him be accused of witchcraft. Also, he would have had to have known that Abigail Williams would have immediately accused him of being a witch once he spoke out against them. However, that did not stop him from delivering the truth to the court.
By looking at The Crucible by Arthur Miller one can see that the characterization of John Proctor reveals the theme of reputation and integrity, which is important because refusing to tell lies to protect his reputation and stop delirium from spreading throughout Salem. John Proctor states that the woman of Salem who have been locked up for witchcraft:”Excellency, does it not strike upon you that so many of these women have lived so long with such upright reputation”(3.1.305-309). Proctor represents reputation because he would rather die than have his reputation downed to a victimizer. Protecting his reputation motivates John Proctor to deny that witchcraft exists in the village. All he hears is crying out of screams and wailing which is a cause of the Devil 's work: “What 's she doing?