Conformity And Individualism In The Crucible By Arthur Miller

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In The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, the author perfectly portrays the effectiveness of conformity and individualism through the use of the character’s actions and the consequences that those who do not conform face. For instance, the readers are introduced to John Proctor , the poster child in this play for ‘fighting the system’. Miller uses this character primarily, along with stage directions, dialogue, and other characters, to form his idea of conformity and individualism, and how dangerous it is to stand up in a community where everyone seems to be sitting down. In the beginning of the play, John Proctor is introduced as a prideful man who is visibly against the agenda that Reverend Parris is pushing in the church. When he is …show more content…
In Act 2, Hale is tasked to give word to Elizabeth that her name has been mentioned in the court, meaning that she could possibly be one of the accused. Proctor does not believe what he is hearing at first, but then he physically starts to react to the accusations and suspicion from Hale. When Hale begins to discreetly accuse the Proctors, John becomes, “flushed with resentment”(62), and regrettably admits that he does not believe that there is such a thing as witchcraft in the world. This statement causes the townspeople to become more suspicious of John, because at the time they believed that in order to believe in God, you had to also believe in the Devil and his wickedness. So by Proctor openly dismissing the Devil, he is inadvertently dismissing God. Once the accusations against Elizabeth turn out to be far more serious, Proctor’s anger flourishes. He rips up the warrant for Elizabeth and attempts to kick everyone out of his house. When Hale tries to reason with him, Proctor questions him, saying, “why do you never wonder if Parris be innocent, or Abigail? Is the accuser always holy now?” (73). Proctor then goes on to claim that Abigail and the townspeople are accusing people and creating the idea of witchcraft out of vengeance, claiming that “vengeance is walking in Salem” (73), instead of the Devil. Although Proctor is speaking out of blind anger, he sounds more reasonable than everyone else in the play, speaking not only emotionally, but also

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