As they argue, Betty bolts upright and begins screaming. Parris runs back into the bedroom and various villagers arrive: The villagers, who had not heard the argument, assume that the singing of a psalm by the villagers in a room below had caused Betty's screaming. Tensions between them soon emerge. Putnam is a bereaved parent seven times over; she blames witchcraft for her losses and Betty's ailment.
Rebecca is rational and suggests a doctor be called instead. Putnam and Corey have been feuding over land ownership. Parris is unhappy with his salary and living conditions as minister, and accuses Proctor of heading a conspiracy to oust him from the church. Abigail, standing quietly in a corner, witnesses all of this. Reverend Hale arrives and begins his investigation. Before leaving, Giles fatefully remarks that he has noticed his wife reading unknown books and asks Hale to look into it.
Parris, Abigail and Tituba closely over the girls' activities in the woods. As the facts emerge, Abigail claims Tituba forced her to drink blood.
Tituba counters that Abigail begged her to conjure a deadly curse. Parris threatens to whip Tituba to death if she does not confess to witchcraft. Tituba breaks down and falsely claims that the Devil is bewitching her and others in town. Putnam identifies Osborne as her former midwife and asserts that she must have killed her children. Abigail decides to play along with Tituba in order to prevent others from discovering her affair with Proctor, whose wife she had tried to curse out of jealousy.
She leaps up, begins contorting wildly, and names Osborne and Good, as well as Bridget Bishop as having been "dancing with the devil".
Betty suddenly rises and begins mimicking Abigail's movements and words, and accuses George Jacobs. As the curtain closes, the three continue with their accusations as Hale orders the arrest of the named people and sends for judges to try them. The narrator compares the Puritan fundamentalism to cultural norms in both the United States and the Soviet Union.
Additionally, fears of Satanism taking place after incidents in Europe and the colonies are compared to fears of Communism following its implementation in Eastern Europe and China during the Cold War. Again, narration not present in all versions.
The remainder of Act Two is set in the Proctor's home. John and Elizabeth are incredulous that nearly forty people have been arrested for witchcraft based on the pronouncements of Abigail and the other girls. John knows their apparent possession and accusations of witchcraft are untrue, as Abigail told him as much when they were alone together in the first act, but is unsure of how to confess without revealing the affair.
Elizabeth is disconcerted to learn her husband was alone with Abigail. She believes John still lusts after Abigail and tells him that as long as he does, he will never redeem himself. Mary Warren enters and gives Elizabeth a ' poppet ' doll-like puppet that she made in court that day while sitting as a witness. Angered that Mary is neglecting her duties, John threatens to beat her. Mary retorts that she saved Elizabeth's life that day, as Elizabeth was accused of witchcraft and was to be arrested until Mary spoke in her defense.
Mary refuses to identify Elizabeth's accuser, but Elizabeth surmises accurately that it must have been Abigail. She implores John to go to court and tell the judges that Abigail and the rest of the girls are pretending. John is reluctant, fearing that doing so will require him to publicly reveal his past adultery. Reverend Hale arrives, stating that he is interviewing all the people named in the proceedings, including Elizabeth.
He mentions that Rebecca Nurse was also named, but admits that he doubts her a witch due to her extreme piousness, though he emphasizes that anything is possible. Hale is skeptical about the Proctors' devotion to Christianity, noting that they do not attend church regularly and that their second child has not yet been baptized ; John replies that this is because he has no respect for Parris.
Challenged to recite the Ten Commandments , John fatefully forgets "thou shalt not commit adultery". When Hale questions her, Elizabeth is angered that he does not question Abigail first. Unsure of how to proceed, Hale prepares to take his leave.
At Elizabeth's urging, John tells Hale he knows that the girl's afflictions are fake. When Hale responds that many of the accused have confessed, John points out that they were bound to be hanged if they did not; Hale reluctantly acknowledges this point. Suddenly, Giles Corey and Francis Nurse enter the house and inform John and Hale that both of their wives have been arrested on charges of witchcraft; Martha Corey for reading suspicious books and Rebecca Nurse on charges of sacrificing children.
A posse led by clerk Ezekiel Cheever and town marshal George Herrick arrive soon afterwards and present a warrant for Elizabeth's arrest, much to Hale's surprise. Cheever picks up the poppet on Elizabeth's table and finds a needle inside. He informs John that Abigail had a pain-induced fit earlier that evening and a needle was found stuck into her stomach; Abigail claimed that Elizabeth stabbed her with the needle through witchcraft, using a poppet as a conduit.
John brings Mary into the room to tell the truth; Mary asserts that she made the doll and stuck the needle into it, and that Abigail saw her do so. Cheever is unconvinced and prepares to arrest Elizabeth. John becomes greatly angered, tearing the arrest warrant to shreds and threatening Herrick and Cheever with a musket until Elizabeth calms him down and surrenders herself.
He calls Hale a coward and asks him why the accusers' every utterance goes unchallenged. Hale is conflicted, but suggests that perhaps this misfortune has befallen Salem because of a great, secret crime that must be brought to light. Taking this to heart, John orders Mary to go to court with him and expose the other girls' lies, and she protests vehemently. Aware of John's affair, she warns him that Abigail is willing to expose it if necessary.
John is shocked but determines the truth must prevail, whatever the personal cost. The third act takes place thirty-seven days later in the General Court of Salem, during the trial of Martha Corey. Francis and Giles desperately interrupt the proceedings, demanding to be heard. The court is recessed and the men thrown out of the main room, reconvening in an adjacent room. Danforth then informs an unaware John that Elizabeth is pregnant, and promises to spare her from execution until the child is born, hoping to persuade John to withdraw his case.
John refuses to back down and submits a deposition signed by ninety-one locals attesting to the good character of Elizabeth, Rebecca Nurse and Martha Corey. Herrick also attests to John's truthfulness as well. The deposition is dismissed by Parris and Hathorne as illegal. Hale criticizes the decision and demands to know why the accused are forbidden to defend themselves.
Danforth replies that given the "invisible nature" of witchcraft, the word of the accused and their advocates cannot be trusted. He then orders that all ninety-one persons named in the deposition be arrested for questioning. Giles Corey submits his own deposition, accusing Thomas Putnam of forcing his daughter to accuse George Jacobs in order to buy up his land as convicted witches have to forfeit all of their property. When asked to reveal the source of his information, Giles refuses, fearing that he or she will also be arrested.
His good name is all he has to leave his sons. The drama is based upon contemporary sources noted within the text but omitted in performance, as are explanations of the political significance of witch hunts, past and present. On stage, it is the compelling human tragedy that has made the play an American classic.
Cambridge University Press, Solid analysis of the central themes. Contends that The Crucible explores the balance between social responsibility and individual freedom. XVII May, , pp. LIV June, , pp. Contends that the play transcends the topical parallel of the House Committee on Un-American Activities and stands on its own merits.
Politics, Property, and Pretense. New Perspectives , Conversations with Arthur Miller. Unlock Your Education See for yourself why 30 million people use Study. Become a Member Already a member?
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- Long Essay - The Crucible q How is language used in The Crucible to express the emotional intensity if characters in conflict with each other and/or society and to convey the abstract ideas that emerge through that conflict. The Crucible is a play written by Arthur Miller in
The Crucible essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of The Crucible by Arthur Miller.
The Crucible Essay The Crucible is a play written by Arthur Miller, one of the leading American playwrights of the twentieth century, in It is based on the events surrounding the witch trials of Salem. The Crucible by Arthur Miller Essay Words | 3 Pages The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller is a play that takes place in the late 17th century during the .
One of the most prominent themes in The Crucible is the importance of a good name. Analyze what a good name means to several of the characters, using specific examples to support your conclusions. Analyze what a good name means to several of the characters, using specific examples to support your conclusions. The Crucible Essay. BACK; NEXT ; Writer’s block can be painful, but we’ll help get you over the hump and build a great outline for your paper.