Hysteria In The Crucible

779 Words4 Pages
The word hysteria was established to describe a health condition that originates from a minor emotional crisis, then converting itself into a physical problem. Arthur Miller portrays this idea within his play The Crucible, a drama based around the idea of displaying the traumatic notions of the Salem Witch Trials and further exemplifying the mistakes behind McCarthyism in the face of the Red Scare. The Crucible follows the story of a group of girls who provoke the fear of witchcraft within Salem causing the deaths of their neighbors through false accusations and hangings. The hysteria within the play epitomized not only the Red Scare, but events such as the Ebola outbreak, McMartin Preschool trials, and the spread of hysteria within everyday…show more content…
Although the evidence was telling her that she was incorrect about her assumption, she continued to press forward with her charges. The investigators continued to search for evidence despite the potential for these allegations to be false. The news rapidly spread across the country, causing additional parents to come forth and insist their children were molested as well, eventually leading to a nationwide witch hunt for these child molesters. Afterwards, Ray Buckley in a CBS interview said: "Those poor children went through hell,...but I'm not the cause of their hell and neither is my mother..The cause of their hell is the ...adults who took this case and made it what it was" (Linder). This endemic of hysteria shaped exactly like the Salem Witch Trials. It began with a false allegation in which there was no true evidence except that of word, which they received from an unreliable source. Within The Crucible Mr. Parris pleads"Thomas, Thomas, I pray you, leap not to witchcraft. I know that you - you least of all, Thomas, would ever wish so disastrous a charge laid upon me. We cannot leap to witchcraft. They will howl me out of Salem for such corruption in my house"(Miller 14). Mr. Parris comprehends the gravity of the situation, fully grasping on the fact that if his name is to slightly be related to witchcraft he will be exiled from the community. If they were to bring the idea of witchcraft into the frame, it would fully bring the town into hysteria hunting for non-existent witch. Both of these situations replicate the other precisely, hysteria is still as prevalent in modern society as it was during Salem, a false notion can act as a catalyst for fear throughout the community which quickly transforms into mass
Open Document