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John Proctor, The Tragic Hero Essay

1268 words - 6 pages

In the play the Crucible, by Arthur Miller, John Proctor is seen as a tragic hero because of his tragic fate and his sacrifice to his family. The play takes place in the town of Salem Massachusetts in 1692 during the times of the Salem witch trials. Many of the townspeople were being accused but one family inpeticular named the Proctors were at the epicenter of the accusations. The proctors were being accused by Abigail Williams, which eventually led to the death and hanging of John Proctor. John Proctor is seen as a tragic hero because he had a tragic flaw, which was a lust for sex, which lead to an affair with Abigail, he had free choice of whether or not he was going to be hanged but admitted he was a witch, because he does not want to hurt his family, and John Proctor had increased awareness in the story because he realizes what is wrong in town and makes a statement of trying to stop it by accepting the punishments.
John Proctor had a tragic flaw which was a lust for sex, which eventually leads to an affair with Abigail and him being indirectly accused. Before the book took place John Proctor and Abigail had an affair with each other. This eventually led to Abigail being fired by the Proctors. John Proctor loses all interests in her and Mrs. Proctor forgives him, but at different parts of the play John still shows feeling for lust. “Proctor: gently pressing her from him, with great sympathy but firmly” (Miller 22). This action by Proctor describes that he is still physically attracted to her because he is still showing sympathy for Abigail and they were pressing up against each other sexually. At the end of the scene he starts to fight with Abigail and she gets upset. “Abigail: saw your face when she put me out, and you loved me then and you do now!” (Miller 21). Abigail is saying that John is still showing feelings for her because she claims he still loved her when the Proctors fired her. At the end of the argument they are having Abigail yells at John and says “Abigail: You loved me, John Proctor, and whatever sin it is, you love me yet!” (Miller 22). Abigail still thinks that John still loves her but he says he does not and this causes Abigail to become very upset. Abigail knows that John is breaking a sin but still interrogates him to love her back. Because of Abigail’s angriness and John Proctors past history with Abigail, the whole books conflict and significant rising action happens in this scene. It causes a plot to be set up and for Elizabeth Proctor to be accused by Abigail so she can have John Proctor and get rid of Elizabeth. This is a tragic flaw for John because of Abigail’s accusations; John Proctor has a tragic death. A tragic flaw is that “the tragic hero must ‘fall’ due to some flaw in his own personality.” (Characteristics). John Proctor greatly represents a lust for sex which is his tragic flaw and leads to him being hanged.
John Proctor had a choice of whether or not he was going to be hanged but ultimately chooses to...

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