The Crucible Analysis Essay Research Paper Arthur — страница 2

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willing to cast away her conscience in order to spare her husband humiliation; she lied to save his good name in Salem. However, the court had already recorded John’s confession when Elizabeth was not present. For lying, Elizabeth was arrested. She knows her husband for a lecher; at that point in the play, it was only a matter of his confessing to her. Since he hadn’t confessed to her up to this point, Elizabeth believed that he would have withheld it from the assembly. In the above quoted scene, Elizabeth looks to John many times for reassurance; his back was turned to her by request of Danforth. He was truly turned from her, and during this time of great moral conflict between truth and good name, Elizabeth was on her own. In the pauses in her speech, Elizabeth is probably

considering her situation. She knows that if she accuses her husband of lechery and he has not confessed, he will be persecuted for perjury. If she does not accuse him and he has confessed, she will be persecuted. Rather than have harm or shame be set upon her husband, she chooses to take the chance of having the blame upon herself. Elizabeth, no matter how much she loves her husband and wants to live with him, will not stand in his way when he has made a decision. In the resolution of the play, John Proctor is hung for witchery. Mary Warren, the aide that replaced Abigail, cries out on Proctor in court. Elizabeth talks to Proctor in his cell, and he declares that he wants his life. He signs a confession, but then realizes that the document he just put his name on was a lie.

(Proctor) [speaking of Danforth's wish to post his confession on the church] “What others say and what I sign to is not the same!” (Danforth) “Why? Do you mean to deny this confession when you are free?” (Proctor) “I mean to deny nothing!” (Danforth) “Then explain to me, Mr. Proctor, why you will not let-” (Proctor) Because it is my name!… Because I lie, and sign myself to lies!… I have given you my soul, leave me my name!” (Danforth – pointing to the confession in Proctor’s hand) “…If it is a lie I will not accept it!… You will give me your honest confession in my hand, or I cannot keep you from the rope.” Proctor tears the paper and crumples it. (137-138) Seeing this, Elizabeth realizes that if Proctor cannot convince the court that the girls

are frauds and that the accusing of witches were simply a manifestation of revenge, the only thing that John could do then was to keep his name free of the black sin of witchcraft. He would prove to the town that he would stand by his belief in that there were no witches, and the best way that he could do so was to be martyred; he refused to be broken by authority. Elizabeth recognized this, and although Reverend Hale persuaded her to convince John to step away from the gallows, she refused. (Hale) “Woman, plead with him!… It is pride, it is vanity! Be his helper- what profit him to bleed? Shall the dust praise him? Shall the worms declare his truth? Go to him take his shame away!” (Elizabeth) “He have his goodness now. God forbid I take it from him!” (139) Elizabeth,

in loving her husband, let him stand up- and die- for what he believed in. She would not tell him to let go of a cause that she knew he believed in strongly as he believed in the lack of existence of witches. Although it undoubtedly pained her beyond comprehension to see her husband hung when she easily could have stopped him, she would not think to take her husband’s good name away and have him confess to the witchcraft he declared he did not believe in. She put her own state in disregard in favor of letting John show Salem that he was going to keep his good name, even if it meant dying for it. Elizabeth Proctor was a strong woman who had love and respect for her husband John, no matter what pain he inflicted upon her. She was determined to speak of nothing but the truth, but

when her husband’s well-being came into question, she disregarded her own credibility to spare him. Elizabeth stood up to Salem and, while others went wild and called witchery on whomever they pleased, didn’t waver from her steadfast decision to keep her name white. She succeeded, and although she was unable to save the life of her husband, she kept the goodness the Proctors projected. The Crucible remains a precise portrayal of society as it still stands today; not one willing to stand up against majority, although they believe in what is right, and those who do are subjected to the final judgment of the crucible. BIBLIOGRAPHY Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. New York: Penguin Books, 1982.