In Depth Analysis Of Why John Proctor Is A Hero In The Crucible

1895 words - 8 pages

In our lives, we are faced with many life altering choices, many of which are based on one main subject; right versus wrong, or good versus bad. In The Crucible by Arthur Miller, a character named John Proctor is faced with a great moral dilemma. Should he put his reputation on the line to save his life, or tell the truth and die an honest man? John Proctor is definitely a good representation of what many others had to face while being prosecuted for having ties with the devil. The issues during this time period are expressed clearly behind John Proctor's eyes and the way he specifically handled this situation is nothing less than heroic. One way John Proctor provides a good lens on the issues apparent in this time period is that his role in the play allows us a little more insight as to how some of these girls were thinking. What I mean is that he is first introduced in the play as a man who was having an affair with Abigail Williams and did not want this relationship to go on anymore. It is very apparent how much John Proctor meant to Abigail. Later on in the play, consistent displays show just how far Abigail will go to get what she wants even if it means accusing John's wife of witchcraft and should hang. Having had this relationshipand affair with John provides something that others of the town can not see, and that is her motive. Because she loves John, she tells him what really happened in the woods and why she and the other girls were messing around when they shouldn't have been. As this relationship between these two main characters escalates from John dismissing the relationship and then to John yelling at the top of his lungs demanding Abigail forget about him, the situation is raised to a higher level. Being able to see just how Abigail's mind thinks and her power to influence others, John is able to see that she is using this "contact with the devil" as an instrument of power. Along the way, her friends become quick learners as she spreads the idea of power to them who are also "touched by the devil." This idea leads into a moral dilemma that many were faced with during this time. Whether you were the one being accused of witchcraft or the one accusing someone of witchcraft, this problem affected everyone. John could see what was happening and by the end of the play, the whole mood had changed. Abigail and the rest of her followers had figured out just how powerful they had become and began using this to their advantage. They accused person after person of crimes that they did not commit yet they felt no remorse. This, I believe, was because they had felt that by doing this, they could possibly express their burdens and errors that they had once committed. By accusing these people, it shows that they have moved on and learned from their earlier mistakes and somehow that makes them feel satisfied. I quote from Act One, "The witch-hunt was not, however, a mere repression. It was also, and as importantly, a long overdue...

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