Similarities And Differences Between The Crucible And The Scarlet Letter

Arthur Miller and Nathaniel Hawthorne each left a clear mark in the world of American literature with their stories. Even though Miller’s book, The Crucible, and Hawthorne’s book, The Scarlet Letter, were written over one hundred years apart, many elements of the stories can be compared and contrasted. The books share the same setting, a number of themes, and an important symbol, but the plots, point of views, and other symbols are completely different. In general, The Crucible tends to be a more fact-driven book (Miler vii), while The Scarlet Letter is completely fictional and contains many symbols for the reader to decipher. The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne have many similarities, but also many differences. …show more content…
In The Crucible, John Proctor, the protagonist, has committed adultery and is tormented by his sin. Eventually, he confesses that he had an affair with Abigail, the antagonist of the story, and that he spoke with the devil (falsely) in order to save his wife, Elizabeth (Miller 102). These actions were very similar to the actions of Hester Prynne and Arthur Dimmesdale in The Scarlet Letter. Hester and Dimmesdale had an affair together as well, but a judge convicts only Hester of the crime. Though Hester, the protagonist, continues to struggle with her sin, the publicity of her crime eventually helps her move on. However, Dimmesdale’s hidden sin constantly tortures him, much like John Proctor. At the end of the book, Dimmesdale ends up confessing his sin to the city before he dies. Both Proctor and Dimmesdale give up everything, particularly their public reputation, to free themselves from their sins. On the other hand, antagonists Abigail Williams from The Crucible and Roger Chillingworth from The Scarlet Letter are very different. Abigail Williams is a girl who creates a fictional world of witchcraft in order to cover for much lighter sin: dancing naked in the woods. By lying and accusing women in her town to be witches, Abigail causes nineteen women to be hung and one man to be killed by pressing with stones. These actions were all taken in order to keep herself out of trouble. Conversely, Roger Chillingworth acts to take revenge in The Scarlet Letter. Chillingworth is angry at Hester, who is secretly his wife, for committing adultery with Dimmesdale. He decides to use his anger to internally torture Dimmesdale without Dimmesdale even realizing by becoming his personal doctor (Hawthorne 68). Chillingworth is the most evil character in The Scarlet Letter by far, creating psychological horrors that torment Dimmesdale and Hester, who doesn’t want

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