The Fear Of Mccarthyism In Arthur Miller's The Crucible

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During times of crisis and danger, what are some common human beliefs and behaviors? In the 1950s, people in America were living in fear of McCarthyism. As communism began to spread in Europe and China, the US government began to blacklist random people that are suspected to be communists. McCarthyism, also known as the “Red Scare”, is a political campaign proposed by Senator Joseph P. McCarthy that aimed to expose communists in the US government. During the period of McCarthyism, thousands of innocent people were being accused as communists and lost their jobs. Arthur Miller was one of the victims of the McCarthyism as well. In The Crucible, Miller explores several themes that associate with McCarthyism through the story of the witch trails…show more content…
In the situation of a hysteria, there always are people who don’t participate in it. They will often stand out for justice, and point of the ridiculousness of the hysteria. Reverend Hale and Giles Corey are people who behave in that way. At first, Hale’s opinion toward the whole incident of witch hunt is same as the people in Salem. However, as the whole incident becomes out of control, he realizes something is wrong. Hale points out to the judge, “I may shut my conscience to it no more—private vengeance is working through this testimony! (Holt p.1150)” Hale does not keep silence when he discovers that the whole incident is a hysteria starts by a girl who wants private vengeance. In the play, Corey also stands out to point out the flaws of the whole witch hunt incident. Despite the risk of being accused, Corey stands out to accuse Thomas Putnam of encouraging his daughter to accuse George Jacobs in order to get his land. Corey and Hale demonstrate the reason left in the society. However, the death of Corey at the end of the play symbolizes the death of reasoning during the time of crisis. It also suggests that people who stand out for justice during the time of crisis would often end up in a troubling

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