Analysis Of The Title Of The Crucible

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The Crucible by Arthur Miller is a play written in response to the “communist scares” in America in the 1950’s. Miller chose “The Crucible” as the title because the definitions of the words match the play perfectly. A crucible is a container that can withstand high temperatures, often used to melt, and change the shape of metals. The town of Salem can be compared to the container that melts metals. The witchcraft trials can be compared to the severe tests or trials. Also, the severe tests or trials can be compared to how people are fighting themselves, and making moral decisions. (Dictionary).
One of Miller’s reasons for titling his play “The Crucible” was that the container for melting metals was a good representation of the town of Salem. A crucible is used in metal craft because you can change the properties, shapes and atomic structure, of the metal. They become easier to work with when heated or melted together. The town of Salem is the crucible, and the people are the crucible substances. The idea of witchcraft is the heat or flames. A lot of people throughout the play change dramatically, such as John Proctor. At the beginning of the play, Proctor was stubborn and selfish. This can be seen when he is yelling at his assistant Mary Warren, “Be you foolish, Mary Warren? Be you deaf? I forbid you to leave the house, did I not? Why shall I pay you? I am looking for you more often than my cows.” (Miller 176). At the end of the play, he didn’t show these qualities. He was willing to die with the others that were accused, over confessing to something he never did. He tells Danforth that he won’t confess, “Danforth: Do you sport with me? You will sign you name or it is no confession, Mister! Proctor: Praise be to the Lord! Danforth: If you please, sir. Proctor: No.” (239). Reverend Parris was another person who changed throughout the play. In the beginning, Parris was portrayed as very cruel person. He yells at Tituba, “Out of here! Out of my sight!” (169). By the end of the play, he becomes more humble and modest. This can be seen especially when Abigail takes his money, “Hathorn: She have robbed you? Parris: Thirty-one pound is gone. I am penniless.” (231). Reverend Hale is also another person who drastically changed. When he arrives at Salem, he claims to be very smart and is able to save everyone from the devil and witchcraft. He starts to preach as soon as he gets there, “No, no. Now let me instruct you. We cannot look to superstition in this. The Devil is precise, the marks of his presence are definite as stone, and I must tell you all the I shall not proceed unless you are prepared to believe me if I should find no bruise of hell upon her.” (185). He becomes very different by the end of the play. He not has feelings of guilt for the people he accused. He also was starting to think that he was wrong about the devil and witchcraft. Hale tells his feelings to Elizabeth, “Let you not mistake you duty as I mistook my own…...

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