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The Crucible

The Crucible

  

by Arthur Miller

The Crucible Analysis

Literary Devices in The Crucible

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

This play doesn't mess around much with itty-bitty bits of symbolism... because it doesn't need to. The whole play itself is one big angry, righteous allegory for the intolerance of McCarthyism.Wai...

Setting

In 1692, Salem was populated by Puritans who saw the world in terms of good vs. evil. The powers of darkness, which could wreak havoc and destruction on society if unleashed, were real forces to th...

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)....

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

Lit-crit pro-tip (say that five times fast): when an author calls the majority of his characters "snobs" in one of the very first paragraphs of his text, he's not asking you to like 'em.Check it ou...

Writing Style

"Dolls" are "poppets" and contractions (like "don't) are non-existent... but dropped g's are everywhere. What's going on? Well, Miller is trying to write in the simple language of Puritan country f...

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 Reverend Parris,...

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 si...

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 super-juicy, it has no basis in historical fact. And there are a handful of other inaccuracies in The Crucible,...

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 in their birthday suits in the woods while they contacte...

Allusions

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

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