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The Crucible - Inner Struggles

Uploaded by Quest4Glory on Jul 05, 2004

Arthur Miller’s play, The Crucible, is a great portrayal of humans and their inner struggles. This play takes place in the 1690’s in a small Puritan community based on a rigid social system. An outbreak of rumors claiming witchcraft contaminated this small village. This caused conflict among the people of name and ultimately resulted in absolute chaos. This play clearly illustrates the self-battles of three characters.

Reverend Hale’s battle is initiated by his personal commitment to God. He is a deeply religious man who was unrelenting in his quest for the devil. Originally, Hale believed that there was witchcraft in the town and wanted to drive it out. However as the play develops, Hale witnesses sincere and respectable townspeople being sentenced and hung. He learns that what is being done is definitely wrong and here begins his inner turmoil. With scrutiny, he looks at himself and tries to figure out which way to go. Should he continue with what he is doing and listen to Danforth or should he listen to his conscience? He does try a feeble attempt to talk to Danforth and explain how their actions are unjust, but again, his inner struggle pulls him back to a more moderate stand. Hale then decides to persuade the wrongly accused to confess witchcraft. At least this will save them from death by hanging. He preaches perjury to the people, even though this is also against their religion. Hale’s principles were ridden with guilt and sadness because of his struggle with himself.

John Proctor a farmer and village commoner is similarly faced with an inner turmoil. He has committed adultery with Abigail while his wife was sick. He was fully aware of his immoral actions and the enormity of the problem. Once he though this problem has vanished, it came back to slap him in the face. Abigail decided to call John’s wife, Goody, a witch, this in turn spurs conflict and anger among the townspeople. Proctor then gets involved in these witch trials and claims to be with the devil. His inner struggle is whether or not to tell the truth or fake a confession to save his own life. He is confused as to which way to go and his main obstacle is his pride. John later states" My honesty is broke, Elizabeth; I am no good man."(136) He would rather confess than die as a martyr for...

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Uploaded by:   Quest4Glory

Date:   07/05/2004

Category:   Literature

Length:   3 pages (740 words)

Views:   4780

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