The Crucible Book Review

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Critique of Book Reviews “The Witches”, written by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, Stacey Schiff, retells the meticulous and disturbing history of the Salem Witch trials that struck Massachusetts in 1692. Amy Gentry from the Chicago Tribune, Lara Feigel a writer for The Guardian, and Buzzy Jackson a Globe Correspondent with the Boston Globe comply that Schiff turned this spine-chilling tale into a fantasy that not only made it clearer of the events but, also uses the story as a cautionary account of our own human tendencies. “The Witches” is a tale of bloodthirsty spirits that are still haunting American soil, according to Amy Gentry. “Righteous ignorance and casuistic self-interest are the twin forces that propelled the trials to catastrophic…show more content…
She used direct quotations to build on Schiff’s writing technique. Consequently, saying Schiff demonstrated her ability to narrate supernatural events without setting them off as reported speech. “Skimming groves of oak, mossy bogs, and a tangle of streams, Ann Foster sailed above the treetops, over fields and fences, on a pole,” and “It was mid-May 1692; after a wet spring, a chill hung in the air” are a few examples she uses within the review. However, Schiff did not have a clear protagonist but, Gentry felt that Schiff’s attraction to the subject was clear. In relation to Lara Feigel’s perspective, Gentry also thought Schiff went to great lengths to help make it more understandable as to how and why it was so difficult to escape the mass hysteria. When comparing Gentry’s and Feigel’s reviews, they had very similar perspectives about “The Witches”.
In Lara Feigel’s review, she also mentioned Arthur Miller’s play of “The Crucible.” She started off by comparing the two renditions, which she used as the base of her argument. In Miller’s play, he changed the age of the main character Abigail Williams from eleven to seventeen and John Proctor’s from being somewhere in his sixties to thirty-five. Many of the events that unfolded in Schiff’s book were more upsetting compared to Millers’ even though he was more concerned with demonstrating parallels to McCarthyism. Moreover, Miller’s account of the events was still in accord with
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