Arthur Miller’s The Crucible Vs The Red Scare

1072 words - 4 pages

In life, there are a lot of historical events people learn about, but not many people can relate to them. The Crucible, by Arthur Miller is based on The Salem Witch Trials, many people can relate to it, it has drama. Drama is a key element in helping people understand things, because we all have drama in our lives. The Salem Witch Trials and The Red Scare both had a lot of drama in them. Miller’s story of The Salem Witch Trials closely parallels the Red Scare and communist “witch hunt” of the 1950s.
The Red Scare was a time when people were so afraid of communists. Some even suspected friends and neighbors of being communists. This fear is mostly Senator John McCarthy’s fault. McCarthy started this fear by stating, “I have in my hand the names of 205 cases of individuals who appear to be either card carrying member or certainly loyal to the communist party,” (Shmoop). McCarthy was falsely accusing a lot of innocent people of being communists, because of this there was a word named after him: McCarthyism. “The term McCarthyism refers to an accusatory campaign based on unfair allegations, fear tactics, innuendo, and sensationalized threats of guilt by association,” (McCarthyism). Arthur Miller’s The Crucible took place in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692 (Summary). It was a time when people were paranoid that there was evil in the village. People accused others of witchcraft because of old grudges, they wanted their land, or they were jealous. The accusations started when a group of girls got into trouble for dancing in the woods (Miller). A few of the main characters are Abigail, John Proctor, and Mary Warren (Summary). Abigail is accused of witchcraft, she starts the accusations by blaming Tituba (Miller). Abigail also had an affair with John Proctor, and she still wants him (Miller). John Proctor is a married man who wants to stop the affair, and the accusations (Miller). Mary Warren is a servant girl who serves the Proctor family, John Proctor convinces her to confess that the accusations were lies (Miller).
The first similarity between The Salem Witch Trials and The Red Scare is in both there is a main person in charge leading the attacks. “In Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, the main character Abigail is depicted as Senator McCarthy,” (Bridie). “She was put in a situation where she was accused of being a witch, and tried to benefit from the problem by lying to the town,” (Bridie). Senator McCarthy was scared his power would be taken away, so he accused innocent people of being communists so he could gain more power (Bridie). They both lied to get some sort of Benefit. Abigail’s benefit of lying was to save herself from hanging, and also to gain power and recognition. McCarthy’s benefit was he gained more and more power.
Another similarity between The Salem Witch Trials and The...

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