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The Crucible Themes
Little Words, Big Ideas
Lies and Deceit
Most of the characters in The Crucible are lying – if not to other people, then to themselves. Abigail lies about her ability to see spirits, as do the other girls; Proctor is deceitful first...
Respect and Reputation
Reputation is extremely important in a town where social standing is tied to one’s ability to follow religious rules. Your good name is the only way you can get other people to do business wi...
Compassion and Forgiveness
John Proctor, our main character, is in desperate need of forgiveness at the start of the play, but his wife seems torn about whether to grant it. He had committed adultery earlier that year while...
Good vs. Evil
The entire village bases its belief system on the conflict between good vs. evil, or Satan vs. God. Over and over, as people are accused of witchcraft, this paradigm gets dragged out. When Tituba c...
The supernatural is real to the Salem townsfolk. They see evidence of God and evidence of the Devil everywhere. Yet nobody actually sees spirits -- though the girls claim they do. The play makes it...
The Salem of the play is a theocracy, which means that God is supposed to be the ultimate leader, arbiter, and judge. In practice, however, the town’s religious authorities do the governing....
Religion is woven into the everyday life of the Salem of the play. Its exclusive form of Christianity centered on a set of clearly defined rules: you went to church every Sunday, you didn’t w...
Many of the characters are motivated by jealousy and greed in The Crucible. Abigail is motivated by jealousy of Elizabeth Proctor; she wants Elizabeth to die so that she can marry John, Elizabeth...
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