The Crucible Superstition Analysis

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Becton 1

“Fear breeds superstition; superstition breeds fear.”

In the play “The Crucible” by Arthur Miller he explains how fear and superstition feed to the amusement of people by using examples of how fear breeds superstition, and how superstition breeds fear. The Salem Witch Trials within the play is a considerable explanation of how fear and superstition breed off one another. During this time in the play being accused of practicing witchcraft was effortless. We see this in the play when it Proctor mentions that ninety one people were being questioned about witchery (Miller p.866). This shows that the elite did not care about how many people were accused, even if it did mean their whole village. Also this shows that there was not
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We see this with Elizabeths poppets. In Act two Elizabeth is accused of being a witch by Abigail. When Hale and Cheever come to arrest her, they find a poppet with a needle through it. Coincidently, Abigail got a needle through her gut, so Hale and Cheever take this as Elizabeth using witchery on Abigail. Cheever says,” Tis hard proof! I find her a poppet Goody Proctor keeps. I have found it, sir. And in the belly of the poppet a needle’s stuck I tell you true, Proctor, I never warranted to see such proof of Hell.”(Miller p.860). This shows how Hale and Cheever’s superstition lead to Elizabeths immediate accusal, without even considering whether Elizabeth said the doll belonged to her or not. Erick Ringham says in his article, “The village girls seek shelter in the superstitions of Salem 's establishment, a society of Puritans eager to blame the devil for every misfortune.” This shows how if you made a mistake someone would always be there to question you about your wrong doings. This questioning eventually lead to superstition on their part. Also this shows how the people of Salem during this time connected the devil to anything and everything. In a sense, Satan was always their go to whenever misfortune was taking place in the village. Churches of Salem taught the Puritans essentially that Satan was the logical answer for everything negative in their

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