The Crucible By Arthur Miller Essay

1581 Words Sep 6th, 2015 7 Pages
Throughout The Crucible, Arthur Miller uses many logical fallacies and pitfalls to describe characters and delve deeper into a character’s motives. One such example is found in hasty generalization, which is present in the play. During the first scene of the play, the community is torn over the cause of a “sickness” that has afflicted two young girls. One of the girls is the daughter of Reverend Parris, and the other the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Putnam. Both girls express similar symptoms; they are unresponsive and unable to move out of bed. Part of the town begins to worry that the girls have become overcome by darkness, although others are unwilling to accept this explanation. Revered Parris, who observed a group of girls dancing in the forest around a fire the previous night, is skeptical of the “sickness.” He does not want to assume it is the work of the Devil, as the Putnams suggest. Mrs. Putnam describes her daughter, Ruth’s, condition, explaining, “‘She ails as she must-she never waked this morning, but her eyes open and she walks, and hears naught, sees naught, and cannot eat. Her soul is taken, surely’” (Miller 13). Mrs. Putnam makes a hasty generalization of the situation. She jumps to the conclusion that her daughter’s soul is taken by the Devil, with only minimal evidence to support her claim. Instead of waiting for the “sickness” to fix itself, the Putnams assess the situation, and within hours, believe they know exactly what is wrong with their daughter. They…

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