The Crucible Thematic Essay

1722 Words May 29th, 2008 7 Pages
Ben Boyd English 11H

The Crucible: Thematic Essay

The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, is a rich and enticing play set in the late 1600’s describing the epic horrors and emotions through the events of the Salem witch trials. The Crucible, focuses primarily on the inconsistencies of the Salem witch trials and the extreme behavior that can result from dark desires and hidden agendas. The play begins with the discovery of several young girls and an African American slave, Tituba, in the woods just outside of Salem, dancing and pretending to conjure spirits. The Puritans of Salem stood for complete religious intolerance and stressed the need to follow the ways of the bible literally without exception. The actions of the women in
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Just as she threatens to harm the other girls through conjurings and witchcraft if they do not comply to what she says, Abigail later carefully takes the eyes of justice off of herself by accusing others of witchcraft. What begins as a simple act of preservation, quickly turns into an opportunity to achieve power and ultimately win over John Proctor for herself.
Religion is almost used as a weapon in some cases against certain individuals. Using the idea of religion as a weapon also symbolizes a method to receive power and authority. Reverend Parris and John Proctor are involved in a slight dialectic conflict which ultimately demonstrates Parris’ desire for authority. Parris views Proctor as his primary opponent throughout the play, demonstrated first when Parris accuses Proctor of leading a faction against him. Parris’ anger rises against the members of the community when he feels that Salem fails to recognize their “obligations towards the ministry”.
In act II, Elizabeth and John Proctors feelings for each other are first expressed. Tension and mutual frustration may define their relationship in this act. Social responsibility is demonstrated in the angered dialogue between Elizabeth and

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