The Crucible Thematic Essay

1706 WordsJun 12, 20087 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…show more content…
Even though he knew it was wrong it was up to him to admit that he had done it to stay honest to himself, keep his name clean, and live free from guilt. The act of confession by John also demonstrates his act of self preservation. If John had not confessed he would not have been physically hurt, but moreover mentally impacted. His act of self preservation was through relieving himself of the guilt he would have had to endure if he had not told his wife, Elizabeth, of his actions. Elizabeth demonstrates her act of self-preservation by tiptoeing around Johns feelings. “Quietly, fearing to anger him by prodding” (51) Due to Elizabeth’s social status, she is unable to speak out and say what she may truly feel. In a ways, Elizabeth said many of the things she said in a mild tone in fear of causing John to lose his temper. Reverend Hale, and apparent expert on witchcraft who insists on doing everything by the book, demonstrates his social responsibility by solely doing his job correctly. Even though in today’s society it is clear that witchcraft does not exist, it is apparent that in this play, witchcraft is studied to the extremes. This being said, Hales social responsibility was simply to determine whether or not each accused person was a witch or not. Hale determines and eventually realizes that his own good intentions and commitment to god governed his actions of keeping certain people alive despite the “by the book” evidence which had been
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