By Harold Bloom
Every one name beneficial properties:
- serious essays reflecting a number of faculties of criticism
- Notes at the contributing critics, a chronology of the author's lifestyles, and an index
- An introductory essay via Harold Bloom.
Read or Download Arthur Miller's The Crucible (Bloom's Guides) PDF
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Additional resources for Arthur Miller's The Crucible (Bloom's Guides)
Although it might appear that Miller is rewriting history for his own dramatic purposes by introducing a sexual relationship between Abigail and Proctor, his invention of the affair is psychologically and historically appropriate. As he makes clear in the prefatory note preceding the play, “dramatic purposes have sometimes required many characters to be fused into one; the number of girls . . has been reduced; Abigail’s age has been raised; . ” Although Miller found that Abigail’s refusal to testify against Proctor was the single historical dramatic “fact” he was looking for, there are two additional considerations that make adultery and Abigail’s altered age plausible within the historical context of the events.
But then Mary provides a flimsy explanation of why she turned against the woman and why the judges condemned her as well. We find out also that Sarah Good smokes a pipe and that even though she is almost sixty, she is pregnant and husbandless, additional reasons for the upright Puritans to be against her. Mary repeats that she is an official in court and will have to be gone daily, at which Proctor takes down his whip and Elizabeth tries to talk sense into the girl. ” With this, the whip drops and the couple finds out that Elizabeth’s name had been mentioned in court but that Mary stood up for her and the judges dropped the inquiry.
His uncertainty concerning the reliability of the witnesses and their testimony was considerably heightened when his own wife was also accused of being a witch. Hale appears to have been as tortured spiritually and as dedicated to the “middle way” in his later life as Miller has portrayed him in The Crucible. Five years after Salem, he wrote in his “Enquiry”: The middle way is commonly the way of truth. And if any can show me a better middle way than I have here laid down, I shall be ready to embrace it: But the conviction must not be by vinegar or drollery, but by strength of argument.