From a man who came to Salem revelling in the fact that his hard won expertise would be put to good use, to a man struggling with his conscience and nearly openly proclaiming the witch trials falsity, Hale changed into a different man over the course of the book. His change would seem like common sense now; no one would believe that witches were enchanting girls and torturing them. However, the extremity of the religion at this time affected how long the false claims were believed. His realization was, for the time, progressive. Arthur Miller did a good job of portraying the Salem Witch Trials in The Crucible.
Vladimir Lenin once said “A lie told often enough becomes the truth.” When we as human beings lie enough, we start to convince ourselves that the tale is true. Author Miller wrote a play called The Crucible where he introduces us to characters going through tribulations, intwining themselves in a web of lies. Many of them are bombarded with words that make them convict themselves of things they did not do. When asked “are you a witch” if the answer was not “yes sir, but I want to come to God now” then they were to be killed. Through out the story the author proves that the truth does not always bring freedom by showing us John Proctor, Abigail Williams, Reverend Parris and Mary Warren.
John Proctor is a good man despite anything others may say about him. He displays three very noble qualities throughout the witch trials which are bravery, honesty, and an overall goal to save lives even to the point where he sacrificed his. While many argue John is a bad man because he committed adultery they are entirely mistaken. Just because he had one bad sin gives no right to anybody to call him a bad person when clearly the good side of him is shown more than the bad. John Proctor is a good man who displays the characteristics of a hero and could be seen as one for giving his life for his friends.
With her confirming the avoided lie from Abigail, John was considered a liar once more because she didn’t tell the truth to the court about John’s affair with Abigail. Elizabeth lying in court set the tone for Act Four when powerful people in Salem fear a rebellion and what hanging Rebeca Nurse, John Proctor and Martha Corey would
Tom begins to change once he witnesses it. His anxiety and guilt about Muff Potter’s fate are clear in the scenes he tries to get Huck to reconsider their vow to secrecy. The decision he finally makes (the decision to tell the courtroom about how the murder really went) is independent by every implication, however. Tom decides to follow his conscience despite his devotion to his loyalty to Huck, his superstition, and his own personal safety. Before the courtroom, Muff Potter tells Tom and Huck “You’ve been mighty good to me boys-better’n anybody else in this town.
How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul; leave me my name!” (Miller 153). This quote truly demonstrates Proctors character as a whole, as he is willing to be hung for the sake of proving his worth to the court. Specifically, Proctor knows he is truly innocent, and wants to make the courts aware of his innocence. His unwillingness to confess to witchcraft, is because of his personal beliefs regarding reputation.
Despite wicked people like Bob Ewell who knew nothing but hate, Atticus persistently looked for a peaceful way to solve problems. When Bob Ewell spat on Atticus, cussed at him and threatened his life, Atticus simply stood there and made no reaction, demonstrating an attitude of peace. Then again in court, when Tom was accused guilty after all of Atticus’s work, Atticus peacefully exited and made no complaint. “Atticus put his hand on Tom’s shoulder as he whispered. Atticus took his coat off the back of his chair and pulled it over his shoulder.
Those who were unhappy did not believe the court was protecting the innocent people the way they should. Some members of the community think that the court is not handling the prosecutions correctly and their decisions should be revised. Arthur Miller utilizes John Proctor to prove that one is either with or against the court. The court wants Proctor to confess of witchcraft in order for him to live, but he is reluctant to do so. He is hanged because he stood up for his moral rights, and he does not say what the court wants to hear from him, a confession.
John has the conscience of an honest man even though he has committed a severe sin, which he hides, adultery. Because of this his name is tainted, making the reader doubt the goodness in him. When Proctor reveals the truth in court, we are surprised because he has confessed knowing it will blacken his name, and he has done this in order to save his wife, Elizabeth Proctor. Because of this we are able to see that Proctor bears responsibility for what has occurred. However when he confesses, Abigail turns against him and accuses Proctor of being a witch.
John Proctor has a reversal in fortune after he has an affair with Abigail. His affair with Abigail led to Abigail accusing Elizabeth of practicing witchcraft. If Proctor had used better judgement and not had an affair with Abigail, life would have been much better for Proctor and his family. When Proctor confesses to his affair he states, “A man may think God sleeps, but God sees everything, I know it now. I beg you, sir, I beg you—see her what she is.