Influential Women In The Crucible Essay, Research Paper
The Crucible by Arthur Miller, is a play involving issues such as envy, hatred, deception and faith. There are many different types of female characters, with differing qualities and strengths of will, yet they are all very important in the plot. Dealing with historical events and characters living historical existence, the characters are very lifelike in the way they interact. The novel includes many strong, and influential women characters. Set in the town of Salem, Massachusetts, The Crucible deals with the scare of witchery among the townsfolk. The story then revolves around the many trials of witches because of accusations by Abigail and her many followers. Among the many convicted, Elizabeth Proctor and Rebecca Nurse play important parts in the play, as well as Mary Warren who eventually caves in to Abigail s threats. Abigail, the cause of the entire witch hunt , is a very deceitful character. In some senses, she is an example of all that is bad in the society, being hypocritical and continually making false accusations very consciously. Abigail only has the girls following her because of their fear, and when Mary Warren finally tells the truth about her, Abigail condemns her, making her a very vocal character in the plot. Oh Mary, this is a black art to change your shape. No, I cannot, I cannot stop My mouth; it is God s work I do. This is lie, because Abigail is definitely not doing God s work by accusing people, leading to their hanging and eventual death. When those people finally speak out against her, she punishes them, and ironically, flees the town when she herself is scared she may be punished. This is an example of how strong she is, and how influential her false truths are to the majority of the townsfolk. Rebecca Nurse is probably the strongest character in The Crucible. Despite accusations and questions, Rebecca keeps her faith and takes no sides in the ongoing debate of witchcraft. This makes her a strong character in the play s development. Her character stands up for morals, and all that is right in society. Why, it is a lie, it is a lie; how may I damn myself? I cannot. I cannot.
Despite the fact she could save herself by simply lying and saying she did the devil s work, Rebecca is willing to hang because she will not lie. Her influence also helps John Proctor to eventually do the right thing by standing in solidarity with others who had died by hanging also, despite the fact none of them had done the devil s work. Mary Warren is a very timid and easily influenced character. From the beginning she does not want to go along with the accusations like Abigail and the other girls, however, she is easily persuaded. This however, does not change the fact she is an influential and strong character in her own way. My name, he want my name. I ll murder you, he says, if my wife hangs! We must overthrow the court. he says.Eventually, her lies and actions lead to Proctor s demise, because of her false accusation. This is also due to another influential character Abigail, and shows how important she is in the plot, because this leads to the eventual hanging of more people. Elizabeth, like Rebecca Nurse, is a very good woman, who stands by her beliefs and morals. Being a focal point throughout the story, Elizabeth shows her true morals in conclusion of the play, where she has a chance to save her husband from being hung, however respects his opinion not to lie, led by the example of Rebecca. This shows her strength, and courage. He have goodness now. God forbid I take it from him. Despite Hale and the others pleading for her to make him lie and confess to save himself, she says by being hung, he keeps his goodness despite being put to death for something he did not do. These four main female characters portray on the whole, the importance of the women not only in the plot but society. Despite all being quite different characters, they all interacted with one another, complimenting each other s roles. Miller in his play shows corruption and evil in the world, through the portrayal of such characters. He also cleverly shows that women, too can be heroes or villains, in times when they were not considered equal to men.