Authority In The Crucible

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The Crucible is based on a true story that took place in Salem, Massachusetts in the mid 1600s. This event is known as the Salem witchcraft trials, including multiple individuals who were accused for witchcraft. During this time period the Puritan’s government was labeled as a Theocracy, a government that rules through a combination of religious and state power. The Crucible suggests Miller believes the abuse of governmental power was through the government’s sole interest in sustaining the power of the court and the Church, excluding all opposing views, and maintaining individual honor and reputation. The power of the Church influences the decisions made by the court. Danforth states, “Now, children, this is a court of law. The law, based upon the Bible, and the Bible, writ by the Almighty God” …show more content…
Hale informs Danforth to pardon the victims because he believes that they are innocent. Danforth responds, “You misunderstand, sir; I cannot pardon these when twelve are already hanged for the same crime. It is not just” (246-248 Act IV). Danforth realizes that it is too late to reverse his decisions, and recognizes the he might have wrongly sentenced people in order to protect his reputation. In most situations, taking place in the court, he appears to have integrity and confidence in making the right decisions. However, now he will not accept the consequences of his false judgment and lose his honor from the society, instead he takes the easy way out and will continue to sentence innocent people because that’s what the society demands. Danforth states, “Come, then, sign your testimony” (662-663 Act IV). By encouraging Proctor to sign a testimony that he knows is a lie, truly acknowledges Danforth’s vulnerability. In order to reinforce his poor authority in Salem and avoid rebellion in the society, Danforth will accept a falsified confession from John Proctor to sustain his own

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