How Does Arthur Miller Use Mass Hysteria In The Crucible

990 Words 4 Pages
In the play, The Crucible, there are many different elements to the plot that make the excerpt unique. Arthur Miller uses the 1692 Salem Witchcraft Trials to show how manipulative people can be by only using their words. He demonstrates elements like mass hysteria, revenge, and superstition to express how easily people can hurt and turn on each other without physical harm.
One of Arthur Miller’s key elements in The Crucible is mass hysteria. By definition, mass hysteria is a condition affecting a large group of people, characterized by excitement or anxiety, irrational behavior or beliefs, or inexplicable symptoms of illness. Hysteria is displayed in all areas in the world, especially in today's society. In the play, hysteria
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Revenge, by definition, is to exact punishment or expiation for a wrong on behalf of, especially in a resentful or vindictive spirit. It was also a major portion of the play that escalated the plot. Miller used the trials of 1692 to demonstrate vulnerability to revenge. In the play, Abigail blamed and accused Elizabeth for casting a spell on her that made her drink the blood and dance. Abigail knows that Mrs. Proctor didn’t do it, but she is trying to get her killed because she wants to be with Mr. Proctor. In the first act, Abigail and John Proctor both admit to having an affair and she wants him all to herself. Abigail wanted Elizabeth dead so she accused her of witchcraft and seeked her revenge. In The Crucible, there were other characters that seeked vengeance, like Mr. and Mrs. Putnam, and that element of the literature kept an alive and exuberant plot. The Red Scare also had some sections of revenge between the US and the Soviet Union. During the Red Scare era, the United States was petrified, yet determined to bring vengeance to stop the USSR from spreading communism. The people didn’t want their way of life to be taken away. The play and the era of these two times both saw revenge as an escape route to a better world, but in the end, only one side could win it all. The United States eventually won the …show more content…
By definition, superstition is a belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge, in or of the ominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance, occurrence,proceeding, or the like. In The Crucible, during the seventeenth century, many people lost their lives by being hanged or were taken to jail because of the superstition of witchcraft. Most of the superstition in the play happened after Reverend Parris told everyone about the dance and witchcraft that the girls committed. Superstition is a very powerful element that can deform the truth and cause greater harm than the truth. In the Red Scare era, some people didn’t believe that communist rule could spread and decided to reject it. While others continued on with their conventional lives, others were taking action and keeping their way of life safe and protected. A lot of people didn’t trust what the government was telling them because of past occurrences. Once the war ended, most citizens of the United States were grateful of the sacrifices that the brave men and women of their country gave for

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