The Crucibles Verbal Irony
Arthur Miller, one of America’s greatest playwrights, living or dead, is a master of verbal paradox. An examination of 3 strong examples of spoken irony in Millers play, The Crucible, will prove this out. While Miller began the genre of the tragedy of the common man, and is likewise know for his thoughtful and definitive plot lines, much of his fame, perhaps can be attributed to his brilliant usage of language typically, and his use of spoken irony in specific. Amidst the drama of the court scene in Act III, Proctor and Mary Warren are being questioned in relation to Elizabeth’s belongings of poppets.
Parris is trying to prove the fact that possibly they were uninformed of her possession of these, that she could have concealed her poppets. In a response to Proctor, Parris websites that “We are here, Your Honor, precisely to find what no one has actually ever seen.” Parris’ significance is really easy; he is merely commenting that the court is trying to find the poppets that apparently Elizabeth had actually hidden at her home, that nobody has actually seen. But to check out Miller, one must be more perceptive, and in analyzing this quote by Parris, there is another implying behind it.
As most know of the Salem witch trials, they specifically understand the unjustified and misinformed court system that was used to implicate the witches. The words said from Parris’ mouth at that circumstances are so contradictory of the court and ironic that from a reader’s standpoint, one is combined between the feeling of laughter and tears. For the knowledge of the witch trials would permit one to know that they were absolutely nothing however a scam. The court is out to find what no one has actually seen. Knowing that there are no witches, then Parris is precisely right when he states this.
It’s just the irony of Parris’ lack of knowledge that makes this quote affective. The relationship between John and Elizabeth is given check throughout this play. The fact that John cheated on his partner and the truth that Elizabeth can not forgive him for this is the basis of the conflict. In Act II, Reverend Hale comes to visit the Hosek– 2 Proctors on his own account to signal them that Elizabeth’s name was pointed out in court. Deep in the discussion, Hale asks John to recite the Rules with the intent to show he is a covenanted Christian man. John can remember just nine of the ten.
It states in the stage instructions that Proctor is lost, and is flailing for the last rule. Then delicately, Elizabeth says, “Infidelity, John.” Of the Ten Rules he was reciting, the single one he forgot was the single one he had actually broken. Add to this, to have the main individual it affected besides him advise him of it is fantastic irony. The Guilt that the irony causes here is incredible deal with the part of Miller. To harness the already blackened ties in between John and Elizabeth to produce such an effective line is genius. Miller, in Act III shows another wonderful example of irony.
The verbal irony portrayed earlier by the Proctors is as soon as again affective here and in many cases much more powerful. John admits to lechery, and the court brings out Elizabeth to vouch for this criminal activity. Elizabeth is a Christian woman who has never ever committed a crime, or broken a rule. Loyal to her hubby, when asked if John has ever dedicated the crime of lechery, she faintly replies, “No, sir.” To go through life never informing a lie, and to need to very first and just lie you inform be the one that condemns your hubby is horrible, but written wonderfully.
The thoughts that must have been going through Elizabeth’s head at the time of the concern should have been unimaginable. Picking whether to shame her husband’s name or to wait is a tough choice. Miller takes advantage of every little information he can and exploits it to produce as much shock as possible. Miller and his modern outlook on playwrighting has actually allowed him much popularity in his life time. In retrospection, his use of spoken irony in his writing has actually greatly contributed to this fame and has made a substantial contribution to his reputation as a writer.