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The Crucible

The Crucible

by Arthur Miller

The Crucible Analysis

Literary Devices in The Crucible

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

Though there isn’t a lot of symbolism in the story, the events in the play itself are an allegory for the intolerance of McCarthyism. For a decade spanning the late 1940s to the late 1950s, t...

Setting

In 1692, Salem was populated by Puritans who believed in black-and-white lines between good and evil. The powers of darkness were real forces to them, which could wreak havoc and destruction on soc...

Narrator Point of View

The narrator actually inserts himself into the play several times to describe characters and tell us what we should think about them, such as when he tells us that Judge Hathorne is a bitter man. I...

Genre

The Crucible is a four-act dramatic play, produced on Broadway and later made into a film. It uses pure dialogue to convey the tension, resolution, and themes, with a few directions for action. It...

Tone

The tone Miller adopts towards the subject of witch trials and witch-hunts, and towards the characters that perpetuate them, is unequivocally critical. He is sympathetic towards individual characte...

Writing Style

The dialogue is the simple language of country folks, while at the same time employing old-fashioned vocabulary and grammar. The narrative asides are slightly more complex and use regular, standard...

What’s Up with the Title?

Nowhere in this play is there of a mention of the word "crucible." So where exactly did that come from. And what in the world is a crucible anyway? It turns out the word has two definitions.&#...

What’s Up with the Ending?

The Crucible ends with John Proctor marching off to a martyr's death. By refusing to lie and confess to witchcraft, he sacrifices his life in the name of truth. At the end of the play, Proctor has...

Plot Analysis

Betty Parris is sick with an illness that seems to be “unnatural”. People are suggesting that it might be witchcraft.The play opens in Betty Parris’s bedroom. Her father, the Reve...

Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis

John Proctor discusses Abigail’s mischief with her.Because John Proctor has committed adultery with Abigail Williams, he is still under her sway. When Proctor visits to find out why Betty is...

Three Act Plot Analysis

John Proctor learns that Abigail Williams is lying and fabricating stories of witchcraft throughout Salem.After John Proctor tries to save his wife from the witchcraft charges in court, Proctor is...

Trivia

Although the tale of Abigail Williams’s jealous desire to possess John Proctor is interesting, and the stuff of soap operas, it has no basis in historical fact. The truth is that historians a...

Steaminess Rating

We don’t actually see any nakedness or sex in The Crucible, but we do learn that Abigail Williams and the rest of the girls liked to dance naked in the woods while they contacted departed spi...

Allusions

The Crucible is peopled with historical figures – Deputy Governor Danforth, John and Elizabeth Proctor, the Reverends Parris and Hale, Abigail Williams, Rebecca Nurse, etc. – but Arthur...

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