Arthur Miller's "The Crucible"

Essay by fenixfiremedicUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, May 2004

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"Once again we were looking almost completely outside ourselves for salvation from ourselves; in the absolutely right and necessary rebellion was only a speck of room for worrying about personal ethics and our own egotism." In this quote, Miller is describing a state in which society looks beyond what is present in order to attain salvation, or deliverance. The people no longer worry about themselves because they are too fixated upon the rebellion, or uprising, which is taking place in their own society. In Arthur Miller's The Crucible, the town of Salem goes into hysterics with the outbreak of witchery. Each member of the society is so worried about who is a witch, who is with the devil, who signed a pact with Lucifer. They are not able to see beyond their accusations. They are not able to see their entire society crumbling into bits of clay. The people of Salem lose the trust and respect for one another that is necessary to maintain order in the society.

Men turn on their neighbors; men turn on their wives; men turn on their children. Arthur Miller prepared himself and approached this open-mindedly; he portrayed famous historic events through the conflicting tension between friends and influence with the power of voice in the town of Salem in 1692.

When The Crucible was written in 1953, Arthur Miller used many tactics in the process. The Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union was well underway. It placed fear in the American people, fear for their safety and fear for the future of their nation. Miller reflected upon this paranoia and hysteria of the period in writing The Crucible. He approached this bare; he left himself vulnerable to the ideas and beliefs of others. Miller when with an open mind and...