The Crucible– The Power of Abigail Williams
“The Crucible,” written by Arthur Miller, happens during the witch trials in Salem, which was an isolated village in Massachusetts. The society of Salem is a really patriarchal society where the men have the power of the females, and where the males run the church. The Puritans in Salem reside in a theocratic society. In a theocratic society, the church has the power because all of the occupants live by the way of God and believe they are His messengers. Rather than God being in power, it’s the fear of the devil that drives the society of Salem to follow the Christian religious beliefs really closely. Abigail Williams controls the homeowners of Salem in order to get authority over John Proctor and God, while the men slowly lose their authority to hysteria and Abigail. While the church consistently holds power in Salem, Abigail gains power over Proctor and Reverend Samuel Parris, who manipulates the authority of the church in hopes of putting himself in a higher position.
Abigail Williams utilizes her abilities of discovering John Proctor’s weaknesses and defects to mercilessly manipulate him to her own advantage to acquire authority. Abigail is skilled in a way that she is able to act flirty towards Proctor, in hopes that he’ll give into her, for that reason making it simpler for her to manipulate him. Abigail’s first step to acquiring power over Proctor was having an affair with him, which eventually caused her goal to take Elizabeth’s location. In Act One, Abigail is weeping as she grasps Proctor and says, “I can not sleep for dreamin’; I can not dream however find you comin’ through some door”? (Miller 22). Abigail meaningfully attempts to draw Proctor closer to him by informing how she wakes in the middle of the night to await his arrival. She does not imagine him but instead, prefers his existence throughout the middle of the night. By this, she is trying to entice Proctor into resuming their illicit affair to reveal to others’ her authority. Proctor continues this conversation by threatening Abigail into being whipped. Proctor’s danger is presumed to be him attempting to gain his own power back, though ultimately fails. Due to Abigail’s strong skills and power, the other ladies’ do comprehend that if they do not obey her, there may be effects. After all, Abigail is capable of causing death upon who she wishes. Later On in Act One, when Abigail is trying to control the other girls into concurring with her that all they did was dance in the woods, she informs them “Let either of you breathe a word, or the edge of a word, about the other things, and I will pertain to you in the black of some dreadful night and I will bring a pointy numeration that will tremble you”? (19 ). Abigail is threatening to eliminate the other women’ if they expose anything about her desire to have Tituba cast a spell to eliminate Elizabeth. By saying “black of some awful night?, indicating the middle of a horrific night, and “a pointy numeration?, indicating a things that is capable of killing somebody, Abigail is referring to the actions of the devil. As soon as Abigail has actually gained power over John Proctor, Reverend Samuel Parris shows his requiring side when he attempts at controling the authority of the church.
Though the church can not defy, it can be manipulated. Reverend Samuel Parris utilizes the authority of the church to put himself greater than others in the community. Parris fears that any charges against witchcraft made upon the court is an individual attack on him, therefore making him really weak and paranoid. He makes his own demands through the church, demanding that he needs to be given golden candlesticks. In the middle of Act II, John Proctor realizes this and attempts to explain to Hale his thoughts, “However Parris came, and for twenty weeks he preached nothin’ but golden candlesticks till he had them”? (62 ). Parris constantly discusses golden candlesticks, revealing his need for overall control and to be the absolute best out of everyone. The fact the silver candlesticks are unsatisfactory and only golden candlesticks are, show Parris’s requirement for being the very best and above everyone else. The golden candlesticks signify Parris’s cause of failure because by the end of the play, he is the bad and weak male. Parris manipulates the authority of the church on a small level, compared to Abigail who uses hysteria to control the church on a much bigger level, to continue to acquire power. Abigail gets the other girls associated with this craze of hysteria and are able to manipulate the homeowners of Salem’s beliefs and the law of the Bible. They claim to have actually seen witchcraft and accuse many others of using it. Abigail is talking with Danforth when she accuses Mary Warren of witchcraft. Abigail pleads that, “a wind, a cold wind”? (101) be taken away. Abigail, as if she’s crying to paradise, asks the “Heavenly Daddy, [to] take away [the] shadow”? (101 ). As normal, Abigail is implicating someone else instead of informing the reality. She describes Mary as a cold wind, implying a negative individual is their society that isn’t needed. When Abigail calls Mary a “shadow,” it’s a very unfavorable tone that roots from lots of lies informed in the past. Shadows are usually dark and resemble something, or in this case, someone inferior. Abigail calling someone inferior isn’t a surprise, considering her consistent want for power over everyone in Salem. The church sustains power throughout the play, strictly because of the Puritans’ disciplined practices. Abigail utilizes manipulation and creates the hysteria of witchcraft in Salem to satisfy her goal of getting power of John Proctor and all of Salem. Abigail acquires the most power, though the church still has the general authority within Salem. Reverend Parris makes a strong effort at revealing his power by referring to golden, instead of silver candlesticks. In arrangement with Arthur Miller, power is sustained by the church, challenged by Abigail Williams, and lost by Reverend Parris.