How does Miller present the character of John Proctor in The Crucible
“The Crucible” is an extraordinary play in the manner in which it was composed in the 1950s, yet it was based on life in the 1690s. Miller wrote the play in the 1950s, a time when the McCarthy witch trials were occurring in Michigan, and set “The Crucible” in the 1690s, a time when the Salem witch trials were taking place. He utilized the earlier, similar circumstance to talk about modern day life in his time and to pass judgement on the occasions that were occurring when he composed “The crucible”.
Among the essential, most important characters, and the character that Miller uses to get his message across with is John Proctor. He is an effort farmer, and a caring married man. He is down to earth, blunt, sincere and outgoing. He is a guy that is never ever scared to speak his mind. In the 1996 movie variation of “The Crucible”, John Proctor is a rugged, tanned, muscly excellent looking guy, and In Act One we find out how his looks curse him and he succumbs to lustful temptations from Abigail, a regional teenager, and has a secret affair with her.
This story showed him to be rather weak under temptation, but we know that he feels a dreadful sense of regret and embarassment worrying the affair that in the end, holds John back from doing the right thing, and this regret and shame also reveals a delicate, warm hearted, considerate side to John. The contexts of the 2 places, Salem in the 1690s and Michigan in the 1950s are extremely different. Salem then, was a strong theocracy, a really religious town where individuals lived their day to day lives by God, and everybody in Salem was a God fearing person.
This is partly why if anything unusual, like somebody being described as a witch, no one knew what to make of all of it, and therefore believed the stories and spread them whether they were true or not. The truth that Salem was a very self consisted of, close knit neighborhood meant that everybody understood eachother, and the stories spread rapidly. This is due to the fact that the community had actually just been developed for around 40 years, and people didnt know whether they could trust one another, for that reason, the stories spread out like wildfire, getting more and more precariously out of control as they did so.
The first scene in which we see John Proctor is when he has a heated argument with Abigail. They as soon as had an affair, but he highly declines her advances now, and this shows a very wilful side to him. We know that he is desperate and so determined to remain devoted to his wife and kids. In Act 2 we see John and Elizabeth together, and how they engage with oneanother.
They are rather cold, and remote with one another, they are both so desperate to please eachother that they act falsely in eachothers presence, or they aren’t themselves when around eachother. I indicate to please you Elizabeth” “It is difficult to say” This reveals he is so desperate to please her that he would lie behind her back to her so as she wouldnt understand what has been going on behind her back, however when she states” I understand it John” the phase instructions says” it is difficult to say”, and we understand from this that she finds it hard to think him, and doesn’t trust him fully, however we know that she wishes to be able to trust him. He lies to her to attempt and hide his behaviour.
We know this is an act to attempt and make his relationship with Elizabeth right again, as he wants her to think that he hasn’t been entering into Salem which absolutely nothing suspicious has happened.” I have barely stepped off this farm this 7 month” We know this is a lie as we see him in an earlier scene in Salem with Abigail. “He is not rather pleased. He reaches into a cabinet, takes a pinch of salt and drops it into the pot” This is an extremely considerable action to think about when considering the sort of relationship John has with Elizabeth.
It is really stretched, and the lies and suspicion are covering and slowly destroying all the love that exists between them. At the minute he would rather add the salt to her stew that inform her it is not rather best. It shows that John would do anything for Elizabeth and actually enjoys her. He desires her to trust him again, however cant see that she is not going to be able to if he lies to her, and because she feels there is no trust between them, she comes across as cold and unloving, whereas the factor she is acting like this is since she enjoys him a lot.
Nevertheless he is doing what he feels right by lying to her, as he feels it will acquire her trust and love if he informs her what she wants to hear and doesn’t argue with her. We know he is not a harmful phony, and he thinks that this is the only thing he can do to correct the relationship. He feels that if he informs her the fact, she wont comprehend him properly, and this all shows that there is a lot of mis judgement and not a great deal of communication in between them. Likewise, Elizabeth still hasn’t correctly forgiven John for dedicating adultery, and so doesn’t know how she should act around him.
She seems cold towards him, and suspicious of him. “Its winter in here yet” This is a metaphor for how John sees his relationship; he is saying she is cold. He wishes to make amends with her, but does not understand how. “On Sunday, let you include me and well walk the farm together” This shows he tries to make amends with her by making loving gestures towards her like this. Elizabeth likes him, but does not understand how to trust him again. She thinks he still lusts for Abigail, and her suspicions appear to be confirmed when he seems hesitant to state that Abby informed him there was no witchcraft included.
Nevertheless John is simply believing that he will look like a liar, and this shows yet more miscommunication between the couple. “I am just questioning how I might prove what she told me” This scenario illustrates the point that Miller is attempting to make well; that regret and pity can often stop an individual from doing the best thing. In this case, the regret and embarassment of John Proctor over his affair with Abigail holds him back from informing everyone about what truly occurred and what Abby informed him.
The comprehensive stage instructions tell us how John looks, how he acts, his intonation and his facial expressions. John Proctor enters, bring his weapon” This shows he is a masculine, strong and diligent farmer. “As carefully as he can. Cider?” This reveals he does not truly wish to do anything to hurt Elizabeth. He is treading on eggshells around her. “With a violent undertone” This shows that John has a bad mood, although he normally conceals it, thus the “undertone”, and shows the better side of his personality as a fair and decent guy. In my second scene, both John and Elizabeth have actually been implicated of witchcraft, and they are both in the jail. It is the last scene of the play.
Miller wishes to show that in the final scene, there is no suspicion or mistrust between them. Elizabeth has realised that John no longer has feelings for Abby, forgiving him, and John is not lying to Elizabeth anymore, and so they are both accepting eachother, and practically forgetting what has actually occurred in the past. They are both very close together, and this assists the reader understand that they have forgiven eachother and there is no coldness between them. When John tells her he may admit, he is self piteous. This reveals simply how embarrassed and guilty he is following his affair with Abigail.
Its almost like he is quiting his reputation for Elizabeth as a penalty to himself. “I am no good male. Absolutely nothings spoiled by giving them this lie that were not rotten before.” Elizabeth tells him she wants him to live, and her viewpoint means a lot to him. This shows his strength of character as he is risking his name by confessing to be a witch, however also his character, as he would rather live and support his wife and household than die a martyr, which shows that he believes that if people believe he is wicked, then it doesn’t matter to him.
It is only the people closest to him that he cares about. We likewise see John to be a very stubborn, obstinate guy in this scene. “Only spite keeps me quiet” His stubbornness probably originates from the fact that he is really strong willed and figured out not to let Danforth or Parris show the kind with his signature on it to anybody. “I have actually signed this. You have actually seen me. There is no requirement for this” This reveals that Miller desires John to have his life, however at an expense, and the cost is expensive for John in the end, and his family pride shows that he will not have the names of his better half and children blackened. I have 3 kids.
How may I teach them to stroll like men worldwide, and I who offered my buddies?” This quote shows that Proctor is a sensitive, considerate male who cares a lot deep down about what individuals think about him, specifically the thoughts of his family and friends, and we gain from this that he is a really happy guy. The stage directions in this scene are also very important. “With a cry of his whole soul” “His eyes loaded with tears” These two quotes describe how upset and upset he is about having his name blackened.
They show him to be an enthusiastic man who wants to combat for his cause, which is his name, however also, and more notably, the name of his boys, and his other half, and for that reason the thoughts of others. In the end, Proctor is revealed to be a male who craved a cause with a pure name, as a happy and dignified guy. I believe that “The Crucible” offers a number of messages. The first is indicated to reveal that sometimes, and ridiculous tale can sometimes get completely out of control, and end with a variety of people being sent to prison, or perhaps losing their lives, all of whom are absolutely innocent.
Another is that in a story like this, the tramps, and all individuals thought about to be lower than everyone else were skapegoated, and this need to not have actually occurred. Miller is trying to say that inside, we are all the same, and whats on the outdoors, and the number of belongings we have cloud whats on the within. Likewise in” the crucible” an individual would have been jailed if they were somewhat eccentric and disobeyed the towns perception of how they ought to act, and by this Miller is attempting to say that individuals shouldnt hesitate, and get angry at things somewhat different from themselves, and individuals shouldnt be afraid of change.
The last message is that you ought to be enabled to repent if you have sinned. In the case of John Proctor, the puritanical society in which he lived didnt permit him to repent for his affair with Abby, so an overwhelming sense of guilt and pity stopped him from doing the right thing. In the Crucible, Arthur Miller uses John as a way of getting his messages throughout. John is the character in the play that we can relate to, and he is the hero of the play.
Miller utilizes numerous significant gadgets like how Proctor acts, looks, speaks, what he says, what people say to him, how he interacts with others and the relationships he has to get his messages throughout. I selected the 2 specific scenes that I looked at because I thought that they showed up all these strategies extremely well. Also, one scene reveals him in a cold, distant relationship with Elizabeth, and the other shows how close and loving his relationship is with her. I also picked these two scenes due to the fact that they provide the audience an incredible insight into how Johns mind works, and what his character resembles.