The crucible is a play based on a historical event that happened approximately 3 centuries ago. This plays talks about a small village (Salem) in Massachusetts that confronted a horrible event, witchcraft. Hysteria invaded people´s mind causing chaos around the village; their Puritan beliefs obligated them to do horrible things even if they did not wanted. Many people were condemned to prison, while others were hanged; the only way to save their souls was to confess their acts. Trials were made to many people that “supposedly” committed witchcraft; but, these trials were unfair.
Causing many suspicion of demonic activity throughout the salem village, hysteria spread quickly as the population ascended to witchcraft creating the act of cynicism. Most conducted these suspicions though dissecting their physical and mental image meaning that most of the civilians would convert to supernatural explanations in order to assume the act of demonic possession and I quote “Good also had a reputation for holding a grudge and for muttering curses against those who crossed her, which would have alarmed her neighbours, not least because many people believed that such curses would work” ( The Salem Witch Hunt, p.69). This quote taken from Sarah Good’s bibliography confirms the suspicions of witchcraft as these sign were depicted as supernatural to the puritans perspective. Being fearful of the devil, most puritans believed that the abnormal should endure punishment as for these acts were created against the church law leading to christian ignorance and disbelief and I quote “They also show how easily people could become convicted that hostile neighbours were wielding occult forces against them”(The Salem Witch Hunt, p.69). Furthermore this explains the drought in the puritans point of view.
Such similarities include the false imprisonment of innocent people based off of prejudice beliefs and heavily biased justice systems. The Salem Witch Trials began in the year 1692 when several young girls in Salem, Massachusetts were acting so strange that they were believed to be under a witch’s spell (Schiff). When confronted, the girls began accusing others of practicing witchcraft (Schiff). Many people were soon accusing others or being accused of witchcraft; they were being accused for various reasons such as unexplained illnesses, failed crops, or a woman could even be accused if she could open something a man could not (Brandt, p. 38). As stated in Anthony Brandt’s article, An Unholy Mess, “Legally, spectral evidence was not grounds for convicting a witch.
In the play Abby tries to do witchcraft to kill John Proctor's wife Elizabeth. She almost gets caught doing it so she accuses many people of bewitching her and got many people hanged. She accuses Elizabeth of bewitching her to kill her. The court will not kill her because she is pregnant but John Procter ends up being hanged because he was accused. In the play Elizabeth the example of good.
All through history millions of individuals have been shunned, arrested, brutally tortured, prosecuted, and persecuted as witches. One would think that post colonization of the United States these unjust acts to human kind would have ended, but that was not so. In 1692 the Salem Witch Trials took place, an event that was a major catastrophe in United States history. It began when a group of young girls in Salem, Massachusetts declared that they were possessed by the devil and made accusations that several older women were practicing witchcraft and fraternizing with the Devil. The strict Puritan discipline is what incited the girl’s interest in magic and superstitious acts which caused strange behavior starting the witchcraft delirium in
To get out of their punishment, the girls claim to have been “bewitched” by the devil himself. From this little lie at the time, it caused a massive fear and hysteria throughout the town. Further in the story we find there are hidden hatred, jealousy, and lust between the people
In Arthur Miller 's play The Crucible, false accusations and fear are used to imprison and kill many people accused of being witches. In this way, The Crucible stands as an allegory for McCarthy 's communist hunt, during which many people were also killed and imprisoned due to accusations of communism. By comparing McCarthyism to the Salem Witch Trials, Miller is able to communicate that people should not conform to societal trends because these trends may be misleading and cause innocent people to get hurt. Many characters in The Crucible serve as allegories to McCarthy 's communist hunt, specifically Abigail Williams, Giles Corey, and Betty Parris. Abigail is indirectly compared to McCarthy at many points throughout the play.
In short it is a clear example of McCarthyism – or making accusations without the proper regard for evidence. A term that was developed during the 1950s as terror of communism grew and developed. The Crucible takes place in Salem, Massachusetts during the infamous “Salem Witch Trials of 1692”. Although fiction, it very well portrays what was going on at the time. These people cried out witchcraft against their neighbors, with alternate motives in the back of their minds.
Intro: “It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane” (PHILIP K. DICK, Valis). In present day America laws have been placed that prevent people who are “insane” to be guilty of the crimes they commit. In short, insanity is the state of being seriously mentally ill relating to madness. This is presented in the book Medea written by Euripides through her point of view. In Medea, a surge of insanity purges her after she is betrayed by her husband Jason causing many cruel and harsh actions to follow from her.
Therefore, Arthur Miller’s arguably most famous work, The Crucible, was influenced by the paranoia of communism in the 50s and his personal relationships. Those who’ve read or seen The Crucible would make the obvious assumption that the play is based on the Salem witch trials. In 1692, the Puritans in Salem Massachusetts were terrified when accusations of witchcraft began to be thrown around. Women would confess and then accuse someone else. Eventually, a total of twenty innocent people were found guilty and hanged (Popkin 140).