The Crucible – Notes from Class

These have been copied and pasted from the board. Hope they’re of use.

  • An important truth is revealed.
  • What is it?
  • How is it significant to character.


         Name of the text                “The Crucible”

         Date of publication            “1952”

         Playwright                            “Arthur Miller”

         Gist                                         “The impact of a group of teenagers accusing                                                  others of witchcraft in a small New England town in the seventeenth century”.
         Intention of your essay    “to show how the revelation of a truth is significant to the character of John Proctor.”

Para 1

– The revelation of a truth – John P revealing his affair with Abigail.

– He confesses to try and prove Abigail is lying about the witches.

– Causes the loss of his reputation because his wife denies it.

– “My wife cannot lie” – Short statement – emphatic – does not allow doubt – he is convinced of his wife’s honesty and integrity.

– “She seeks to dance with me on my wife’s grave” – Tone – bitter – hyperbole – metaphor? – reveals Abigail’s resentment/ jealousy – wants Elizabeth dead

– “Elizabeth, I have confessed it!” – short statement – exclamation (shouted) – despair – means neither Proctor nor his wife will be believed.


Two or three paragraphs about the effect of the revelation on John Proctor

         He is imprisoned as a witch

         The court chooses to believe Abigail “A fire is burning, Danforth”

         Control over the town is handed to the teenage girls “You bring down heaven and raise up a whore”

         Proctor’s name is ruined – “Heaven and Hell grapple on our backs… and God’s icy wind will blow.”

         He is to be hanged but his wife persuades him to confess – “life is God’s most precious gift”

         He is willing to say he spoke to the devil – not willing to sign his name – “I will not sign my name to lies”

         His reputation is in tatters – but he wants to do the right thing

         He wants to be worthy of his wife and children – “How may I teach them to be men in the world and I sold my friends?”

         After being discredited in court, he wants his reputation back – “Because it is my name!”

         He refuses to condemn the others accused of witchcraft – “I am not worth the dust on the feet of those that hang”

         He continues to attack the court as a fraud – “It is mistaken law that leads you to sacrifice”

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