In-class essay on The Crucible
Choose one of the following prompts to respond to in an in-depth, well-constructed essay on The
Crucible. Use this sheet and/or extra paper for brainstorming and any rough draft notes. Type
your final essay and turn it in by the end of this class period. Pay attention to the guidelines on
the rubric. Write your name on the rubric and staple it on top of your essay.
You may use your book if you wish to include quotes, but if you use quotes, you must use
correct MLA format. You may use notes from class and resources I have given you. You may
NOT use the internet or any outside sources, including your classmates. Include a header in the
top right corner of your paper with your name, Mrs. Johnson’s American Lit, your class period,
the date, and the letter of the essay topic you choose. Choose an original title for your essay, and
center it at the top of your paper. Left justify your paper (not center justify) and use 1 inch
margins and 11 or 12 point, times new roman font. Double space your essay, but do not skip
extra lines between paragraphs.
A. Relate the Salem Witch Trials to the McCarthy hearings of the 1950’s. How did the McCarthy
trials inspire Arthur Miller’s writing of The Crucible? What similarities between the two did
Miller use to present his themes? Use specific examples of similarities and how they are
demonstrated in themes in The Crucible.
B. Choose one of the major themes in The Crucible and write an essay in which you examine
and analyze the development of this theme throughout the play. Use specific textual evidence.
C. Discuss the significance of the title The Crucible. What is a crucible, and why is it a good
title? Use specific textual evidence.
D. Write a persuasive essay arguing for or against the following: It is nobler to die with integrity
than to live with compromised principles that harm others. Use specific textual evidence from
E. What role does hysteria play in The Crucible? Cite specific examples of how hysteria impacts
characters, their actions, and the outcome of the play.
F. Analyze the effect of the idea of a person’s good name and reputation in The Crucible.
Compare and contrast how different characters’ (perhaps Parris and Proctor) actions are
influenced by this concern for a good name/ reputation. How does this idea influence different
characters, themes, and the outcome of the play? Use specific textual evidence.