Theme Of Anxiety In The Crucible

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The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, follows realistic events that occurred within Salem, Massachusetts during the late seventeenth century. Significantly influenced by its distinctive and individualistic characters, the play’s plot effectively captures the important details pertaining to the bizarre Salem witch trials. Each character has unique experiences that result in a plethora of different perceptions on every event. Lies, truths, deceit, and respect of characters shape the story, communicating themes of good versus evil, justice, respect and reputation. Various decisions and actions tacitly indicate internal conflict within a multitude of characters. Upon psychoanalysis, motifs of each individual in the play can be determined. Within The …show more content…
Reality anxiety occurs when an individual develops a fear of potential dangers in the external world (Thompson 1). Within The Crucible, Abigail fears punishment for behaving inappropriately in the woods. After being caught by her uncle, she is apprehensive and desperate for power. Abigail’s reality anxiety ultimately results in the witchcraft craze, which stems from her unreasonable accusations. Abigail’s defense mechanism functions by transferring the blame onto unsuspecting characters. In conclusion, the reality anxiety of Abigail is accountable for the deaths of individuals who were convicted of …show more content…
For example, he struggles to control an illicit physical attraction for Abigail Williams. Previously, John Proctor had mistakenly engaged in an affair with Abigail, a decision that he regrets profusely. He constantly deprecates himself for deviating from strict Puritan morals and refuses to forgive himself. Towards the end of The Crucible, Proctor admits, “My honesty is broke, Elizabeth; I am no good man. Nothing’s spoiled by giving them this lie that were not rotten long before,” (Miller 136). Guilt ridden, John Proctor has unreasonable moral expectations for himself. Despite gaining his wife’s forgiveness, Proctor fails to realize that an infrequent sin doesn’t define him. Finally, John Proctor ultimately faces execution because of his superego. Once accused of witchcraft, he is convinced that only death can save his reputation and good name within society. After much deliberation, Proctor’s superego prevents him from falsely confessing to witchcraft and escaping prosecution. Relieved, John proclaims, “Then who will judge me? God in Heaven, what is John Proctor, what is John Proctor? I think it is honest, I think so; I am no saint,” (Miller 138). Eventually, Proctor makes the revelation that he is honest and possesses honorable qualities regardless of his affair. However, throughout the duration of the play, John Proctor’s powerful superego is responsible for his constant

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