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The Crucible

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The Crucible Powered By Docstoc
					The Crucible
  By Arthur Miller
                   crucible
1.   A container made of a substance that can
     resist great heat, for melting, fusing, or
     calcining ores, metals, etc.
2.   The hollow at the bottom of an ore furnace,
     where the molten metal collects.
3.   A severe test or trial.
        The setting and context
   Salem, Massachusetts
   Spring 1692
       Actual setting and context
   Washington, D.C.
   1950s
   The “Red Hunt” or “Red Scare”
An obvious parallel
             Salem, Mass. good
              Puritans look for others
              in town who may be
              communing with the
              devil. The hunt is on.
             Washington, D.C.
              McCarthy looks for
              communists amongst us.
              The hunt is on.
An obvious parallel
             Puritans accuse other
              Puritans of
              witchcraft.

             Americans accuse
              other Americans of
              communism.
An obvious parallel
              The accused are
              shunned in town,
              interrogated,
              blacklisted, and hanged.

             The accused are
              shunned in town,
              interrogated,
              blacklisted, and put into
              jails.
     Reminders about Puritanism
   Religion is a personal, inner experience.
   Humans are wicked by nature, and most are marked for
    damnation.
   A chosen few can be saved through the grace of God.
   Hard work and worldly success are signs of God’s
    grace.
   Education is essential in order to read the Word of God.
                  Remember
   Puritanism was about “purifying” the church.
   This “purification” spread into many aspects of
    life.
   Puritans became unpopular in England and
    they left for religious freedom.
                A Puritan life
   Simple clothes
   Men run the house and make all decisions
   Children are dutiful and obedient
   Go to Church weekly, records are kept
   No work on Sundays
   Bible is law
   No entertainment: dancing, theater, reading for
    pleasure, or Christmas
                  Remember
   Puritanism is part of the Age of Faith.
   Puritanism may not seem logical to modern
    people.
   The Witch Trials really happened, but Arthur
    Miller has dramatized the events to entertain
    us, and teach us.
The basic plot
          Young girls are dancing
           in the forest and are
           seen.
          When the girls try to
           explain their actions
           they begin lying.
          To save themselves they
           accuse others of
           witchcraft.
        Witchcraft: fact + fiction
   In Europe in the 15th-17th C. many were
    accused of witchcraft and executed.
   This fear spread to the colonies.
   The Church believed that the devil contracted
    with people and they signed their names in his
    book.
   These people were then vessels for evil and
    would do the devil’s work.
           Proof of Witchcraft
   The testimony of another witch “I saw her with
    the devil!”
   A common belief or accusation of people who
    lived with the suspected witch.
   Cursing or fighting followed by mischief.
   A devil’s mark, birthmark, etc.
   The person contradicts himself/herself when
    questioned.
The penalty of witchcraft
                Admit you are communing
                 with the devil and you are
                 hanged.
                Don’t admit you are
                 communing with the devil
                 and you are hanged.
                Say others are communing
                 with the devil and you save
                 yourself.
                    Payback
   Since accusations of witchcraft are severe,
    many characters act on grudges.
   Keep in mind that the purifiers aren’t always
    pure.
   There are numerous issues involved in the
    accusations.
                Salem Politics
   Church and State are combined.
   Judicial judgments are based on religious
    judgments.
John Proctor- the antihero
                good farmer
                decent Puritan
                adulterer
Abigail Williams- the antagonist
                   Liar
                   Manipulator
                   Bully
                   Stays with the Reverend
                   Controls the girls

				
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posted:3/29/2012
language:English
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