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Joseph Mccarthyism In The Crucible

Decent Essays
During the 1950’s the red scare was a serious concern amongst American citizens, and Senator Joseph McCarthy took full advantage of the situation. “Capitalizing on the concerns of communism, Joseph McCarthy accused that nearly 200 communists had infiltrated congress” (Miller). The antics of McCarthy can help the reader better understand Arthur Miller’s The Crucible in multiple ways. Many different aspects of McCarthyism are related to the play, which gives the reader a clear idea of the corruption and chaos in Salem in 1692. Through the modern day accusations known as McCarthyism, The Crucible becomes easily understood for the reader due to the many similar repercussions that resulted in paranoia from the population as well as wrongful punishments.
One of the ways that
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PUTNAM: Why, it’s sure she did.” (Miller 76)
This shows that her first thought is not to question if she flew, but how high she flew. The same can be said when looking into McCarthyism when “During this time there were few in the press willing to stand up to McCarthy.”(Navasky B17) The comparison that can be drawn between this quote and that of Mrs. Putnam’s is that she would never question if witchcraft was real or not because then she would be accused of possible witchery. The reason for this is how easily the people would turn on them once they were accused, which speaks to how wary they really were of the red scare in the 1950’s just like witchcraft in Salem in 1692. Once those in The Crucible were accused they essentially had two choices, which were lie and admit to witchcraft or be hanged. While the same extent of punishment cannot be said when examining McCarthyism, the punishments and social dismantling were wrongful and extremely damaging. Also during Mary Warren’s deposition, the severity of the punishments are further articulated by Danforth when he says:
“DANFORTH: You have seen the Devil, you have made compact with Lucifer, have you not? PROCTOR: God damns liars,
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