The Crucible Research Paper

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A political parallel between the Red Scare of the 1950s and the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 may seem irregular, but it is Arthur Miller’s The Crucible that manages to intertwine the two historical events with one another by means of the play’s central theme: how fear acts as a powerful driving force behind mass hysteria and betrayal. Miller’s play, however false the reality of witches is, provides a very real and important lesson about terror being the actual motivation of chaos in both the archaic and modern worlds; a truth which is not examined often, or as effectively, in literature as The Crucible does. Therefore, the significance of the play’s theme is a valid reason for why The Crucible should be required school reading. A key motivator…show more content…
It is when Mary Warren expresses, “I never knew anything before… and all at once I remember everything [Sarah Good had] done to me” (54-55) that shows how the feeling of revelation, no matter how imaginary, becomes addictive for the accusers, seeing as Mary continues to condemn others despite her illogical testimonies. Power also comes with this sudden ‘eye-opening’ sensation; which is implied when Mary calls for respect from the Proctors by telling them how she’s “saved” Elizabeth from accusation, gaining a newfound sense of righteousness—almost as if the Proctors were now obligated, in her opinion, to answer to her demands even though they were her employers (56-57). The seductiveness of achieving a kind of enlightenment guaranteeing automatic superiority is what motivates these girls, from the heart, to successfully continue their accusations. These emotions, combined with the population’s fear of what may happen if they do not listen to the girls, create disorder as they displace logic in justice: a pattern that tends to occur in the judicial systems of the world, and can be detected by students and amended in the

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