The Crucible Teaching In recent events in the United States, there was a terrible act of terrorism. Three planes were hi-jacked and blown up. Many buildings were destroyed and many more people were killed. This caused a great amount of stress and commotion throughout America. This same type of event happened in The Crucible, by Arthur Miller. In the town of Salem, people save themselves by announcing that witches have corrupted their town. These same people also say that the devil has been grasping people's souls. This causes a huge sense of fear in the town. The girls of Salem are accusing only the people who they dislike. Nothing is normal and most of the characters in the play are only out to get what they want. The Crucible, by Arthur Miller is a play that teaches us that people will do anything to benefit them selves.
In the play, there are a few people who only wish to gain something from the witch trials.
Abigail William is one of these people. Prior to the story's beginning, Abby worked for the Proctors as a live-in maid. While she served them, she and John Proctor had an affair. Elizabeth Proctor found out about this and fired Abby. Ever since then, Abby hasn't been able to get John out of her mind. During the trials more and more people are being accused of being a witch. Abby wants to accuse Elizabeth of being a witch in order to take her place because of her obsession with John. Elizabeth knows of this, and in response she says, "It is her dearest hope, John"ÃÂ¦She thinks to take my place"ÃÂ(61). Elizabeth knows that Abby announced her name at the witch trial. Abby wants Elizabeth to be hung so that she can take her place as John's wife. Abby is showing us that she doesn't care what she has to do in order to get what she wants, as long as she benefits from it.
Thomas Putnam is another man that teaches us that people are only out for them selves. Thomas Putnam, a wealthy man in Salem, has a personal grudge against Francis Nurse. When Thomas's brother was running for the minister opening in Salem, Francis was on the opposing side. As it happened, Thomas's brother lost the election. Ever since then, Thomas has felt negatively towards Francis. He feels that he will do anything to get back at Francis for making him look like a fool. When more people are getting charged for witchery, Francis's wife is charged. Francis lets everyone know what she is charged for. He explains, "For murder, she's charged. "ÃÂFor the marvelous and supernatural murder of Goody Putnam's babies"ÃÂ(71). Goody Putnam has had seven of her eight babies die at birth and she has always thought that someone else was to blame. Since their daughter, Ruth, was an official of the court, Thomas thought he could use this to his advantage. He would have Ruth charge Goody Nurse for murdering their babies. This way he could get back at Francis for the humiliation he had caused Putnam in the past. Thomas was manipulating the court for personal gain and that showed us that he only wishes to gain personal vengeance from the trials.
Even the authority figures in the book teach us that they only care about them selves. Danforth is a very respectable and well-known judge. He has been the judge for many cases and was called to Salem because of his reputation. Danforth also comes to Salem not only by the cry of the town, but by the idea that he might make himself more noticed. He has signed away four hundred people to jail, and is proud of it. He is looking for another way to make himself look good as a judge. He tells Hale, "I will not receive a single plea"ÃÂ¦guilt of them that died till now"ÃÂ(129). He is telling Hale that he will not stop the hangings, because if he did, the town will doubt him. They will doubt that he really believes that there are witches and they would begin to think he is a fake. He came to the town because of its hysteria, and thought it would better his reputation. He was hanging people because the town wanted it, and he himself bought into the hysteria. By hanging the "witches,"ÃÂ he was making himself look better as a judge. If he stops the hanging, Salem will think him as a soft and weak judge. Danforth is showing us that he doesn't care about other people, as long as he looks his best.
In The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, the characters teach us that people are always looking to gain from situations. In the town, Salem, where their government is combined with religion, it is a very strict and unusual way of living. When there is word of witches, the whole town becomes frantic. This, is some peoples minds, is a good way to get something. A good way to benefit themselves. Abby, Thomas, and Danforth only look at the witch-hunt as a means to personal gain. The terrorist acts that happened in September also brought the opportunity for people to gain for themselves. People thought that by killing people it would bring self-satisfaction to them selves. Both the current event and the events in the book taught us a lesson about life. People don't care about what they do to others, as long as they get something out of it.