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John Proctor, The Tragic Hero Essay

1051 words - 5 pages

Tragedy is a form of drama based on human suffering that invokes in its audience a pleasure in viewing. One of the greatest philosopher, Aristotle, depicts a tragic hero as a noble man that had an "error in judgment" which led to "a reversal of ending" and "a fate that is greater than deserved". Similarly, Miller, the author of the play, The Crucibles, defines a tragic hero as a common man that is ready to give up his image in society as well as facing the later consequences that may be greater than deserved. In the play, The Crucibles, John Proctor, one of the main protagonist, is known to be a tragic hero. Proctor had committed adultery which lead to Abigail's love for him and ultimately ...view middle of the document...

Therefore she said to him "...I have not moved from there to there without I think to please you...I cannot speak but I am doubted, every moment judged for lies..."(Act 2). He tries to fix the problem he created within his family, but the affair had caused a chain reaction. Abigail sought the affair as true love. Eventually she became a leader of the girls that accuses others for witchcraft. With jealousy and hatred she accused Elizabeth as a witch and caused the Proctors to become associated with the trials. Lastly, this action led to the death of Proctor. He wanted to redeem himself for the sin he has committed and allowed the town to ridicule him and end the accusations. The poor judgment that Proctor made because of his inability to control his desires and temptations led to the beginning of his downfall and ultimately to his end.
John Proctor is seen as a noble character. Although he is not from a wealthy family, he expressed nobility through his actions. His doubt about his own judgement of his morality allows him to make a noble choice. For example, when Abigail Williams was intending to destroy Elizabeth Proctor by accusing her of witchcraft John Proctor tries to protect his wife no matter the cost. “My wife will never die for me! I will bring your guts into your mouth but that goodness will not die for me!”(Act 2). He expects to publicize his sins to free his wife and her good name to be cleared. These good willed actions that he has done to clear his guilt is another reason why he is a tragic hero.
Aristotle states that a tragic hero must be from a noble descendant. But Miller believes that a tragic hero can be anyone. John Proctor is a character that fits in both of their descriptions. He isn’t physically born into a noble family. But he expresses noble characteristics. By the end of the play, people who had not previously respected him started to look up to him. "In...

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