The Crucible: Are You Now Or Were You Ever?

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The Crucible, is a story of mayhem, deceits, and riot. It is a classic example of how lust and vengeance affects the reality in which we find ourselves in. In The Crucible, the desire for revenge and the resulting spreading panic led to many innocent deaths. It is written to mirror a world where the fear of communism is so widespread - that citizens are arrested on no-solid grounds, and the disruption of daily life and death are prevalent. 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. Their reasons varied; lust (for land or for love), envy, or simple hatred. Miller uses dialogue and short asides to tell the story of how an affair between Abigail Williams and John Proctor escalated into something much more, something ugly that eventually attacked the
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As he notes in an essay of his, "Are You Now or Were You Ever?", the following excerpt: “My basic need was to respond to a phenomenon which, with only small exaggeration, one could say paralyzed a whole generation and in a short time dried up the habits of trust and toleration in public discourse.” shows that he attempted, and achieved, to refer to the anti-communist hysteria that was bubbling. As he points out in the same essay, both in Salem and in America, the government became stricter and ruled with an iron fist in order to maintain the social unity intact. Miller began to develop a connection “between Salem and Washington” in his mind, until gradually, The Crucible came to life. (Miller
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