Examples Of Paranoia In The Crucible

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The Witch Hunt of Today
Fear, paranoia, and vengeance all persuaded people’s actions in The Crucible, yet these feelings still play a major role in today’s society. That being said, terrorism can be seen as the “Witch Trials” of today. Similarly to how the people of Salem, Massachusetts created a negative bias towards everyone who they believed had conjured spirits, people today have created this stereotype against Muslims because of fear due to terrorist attacks that have taken place. Fear and paranoia can have a major influence on people to make rash decisions and carry out things they normally would not leading to chaos.
The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 caused hysteria throughout the town rapidly. Fear and paranoia were major causes of why this incident blew out of proportion and became such an intense historical event. When terror struck in the small town of Salem, the society went berserk. The fear of being hanged for witchcraft overcame the women of the community. The constant fright to be accused of trafficking with spirits, even if one knew they were not guilty, created this accusation frenzy. All the girls who had originally claimed they were “possessed by the devil” started blaming others for being witches and conjuring these spirits upon them, especially Abigail Williams. The court of Salem had said that all who did not confess were to be hanged because they were paranoid that if the women were to lie, there still would be witches lingering in their town. Some women decided to confess, even if they were innocent, because of the fear of death. Others did not confess because they were afraid of their reputation being ruined. Rebecca Nurse, a sweet, frail old woman in the town, exclaims, “Why, it is a lie, it is a lie; how may I damn myself? I cannot, I cannot” when the court tries to convince her to follow John Proctor’s lead and confess her sins. She will not confess because she knows she truly is innocent; she would rather be hanged over creating a lying confession and ruining her name. Fear and paranoia was the root cause of the Salem Witch Trials.
Reputation also played a main role in the fear factor that took over Salem. Women and men were so paranoid of losing their good name that some would go
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