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Power: The Fuel Of A Crucible

1417 words - 6 pages

The human lust and want for power has been and is the base of each and every witch-hunt. In the Crucible by Arthur Miller is a play that is based of 1962 Salem Massachusetts, the site of one of the worst witch-hunts in history. Abigail Williams was the main accuser of withes in Salem, and in her accusations she gained power in the town. In total 20 accused witches were hanged, and a total of about 200 people were accused. In a more modern witch-hunt, the Holocaust, Hitler also experimented with the limits of power and using power to control mass amount of people. Both Abigail and Hitler experimented and tested to true extent of power a single individual can use to control others. In the Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, the societal value of power was explored through the actions and repercussions of Abigail Williams, in the Holocaust the actions of Hitler illustrated the limits of power and to what extent power can be used to manipulate mass amounts of people. Both Hitler and Abigail used their power for control and to benefit themselves, but also they caused fear in the people and retaliation to some level.
Once an individual recognizes the power that they have they use it to control people, this could be control in a positive or a negative way. In the Crucible Abgail uses her power to control her fellow girls in the court, “Danforth: What is it, child? Abigail: I- I know not. A wind, a cold wind, has come. Marry Warren: Abby! Mercy Lewis: Your Honor, I freeze”, this all occurred during the court session that involved Marry admitting that all of the girls had been faking it (Act 3, pg 1088). This is a example of how Abigail uses her gained power from the court to manipulate the court. Abigail can use her power and cause the girls to follow her in her actions. When Mary Lewis threatens to expose Abigail as a fake, Abigail just uses her power to make the court think that Mary Lewis was sending her spirit out and into Abigail. This passage gives insight into how power functions in controlling individuals, some individuals are forced to act under the power without a mind, and other are forced into believing things that they normally would not believe in because of a manipulated mob mentality. In Salem the community trusted and respected the girls, so when the girls acted as thought a witch was affecting them the community then took on the same idea. Abigail’s power allowed her to control the community’s beliefs and the way that they accused witches. Abigail’s use of power had many similarities with how Hitler used his power to control the German people. Hitler used his power to create a huge sence of how Germany and the Aryan race was the greatest and how they could control the world. Once Hitler had used his power to unite the country he could then control their actions and use them to carry out his plans. Hitler’s power allowed him to exert control over the citizens of Germany, he could control what they believed and he used rhetoric to...

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