Significance Of The Miller 's ' The Crucible '

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To understand the importance of the meaning of Miller’s play The Crucible and the symbolism used within, it is crucial to comprehend not only the author’s background, but also his motivation for writing. The play is about a group of girls that become sick for no apparent reason. Rumors subsequently start and escalate that some individuals are consorting with the devil, consequently creating hysteria and fear in the town. The townsfolk turn on each other, blaming others as a way of exonerating themselves. A system of justice is set up, and the ‘success’ of the Salem Witch Trials is dependent on accusations and the singling out of individuals. It encourages a cycle of blame, which then leads to a creation of lies for individual’s own gains, and innocent people being persecuted. Writing in the early 1950’s, Miller manages with expertise to demonstrate the similarities between the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and the victimization of communists at the time he was writing. The injustices and frenzy that he highlights in the play are a magnificent example of the turbulent times that he was living and working in, and the effects it had not only on individuals, but American society as a whole. Arthur Miller was born in Harlem, New York City on October 17, 1915. The son of a wealthy immigrant, he watched his family lose their wealth after the Wall Street Crash in 1929. This had a strong influence on Miller, and social justice and tragedy dominated much of his writing throughout his
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