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The Crucible

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The Crucible by Arthur Miller Arthur Miller Generally recognized as one of the greatest playwrights of the 20th century His plays challenge the assumptions of society ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Crucible


1
The Crucible
  • by Arthur Miller

2
Arthur Miller
  • Generally recognized as one of the greatest
    playwrights of the 20th century
  • His plays challenge the assumptions of society
    and ask people to think about their
    responsibilities to each other

3
Early Years
  • Born in 1915
  • Lived in a primarily Jewish area of Harlem
  • Family moved to Brooklyn when his fathers
    business struggled
  • Worked at an auto-parts warehouse, where he was
    the only Jewish employee experienced American
    anti-Semitism

4
Major Works
  • All My Sons became a financial success in 1947
  • Won the Pulitzer Prize for Death of a Salesman in
    1949
  • The Crucible premiered in 1953

5
Marriages
  • Married Mary Slattery in 1940, with whom he had
    two children
  • Divorced Slattery and married Marilyn Monroe in
    1956
  • Divorced Marilyn Monroe in 1961 (she died in
    1962)
  • Marriage to photographer Inge Morath in 1962
    lasted until her death in 2002

6
Miller with Marilyn Monroe
7
Political Troubles
  • 1956 subpoenaed to appear before the House
    Un-American Activities Committee
  • 1957 convicted of contempt for refusing to name
    names to the HUAC
  • 1958 conviction overturned

8
House Committee on Un-American Activities Hearing
1947
9
Protests following the firing of the Hollywood
10
10
Political Activism
  • 1970 Millers works are banned in the Soviet
    Union as a result of his work to free dissident
    writers
  • Continued to work to halt arrests of dissident
    writers in Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia
  • 1986 one of 15 writers and scientists invited
    to meet with Mikhail Gorbachov to discuss Soviet
    policies

11
Millers Death
  • Miller died on February 10, 2005, at the age of
    89.
  • NPR On Point

12
The Crucible
13
Historical Context
  • Based on real events that took place in Salem,
    Massachusetts in 1692
  • Miller traveled to Salem in 1952 to do research
    for The Crucible
  • Said that the play was not history in the sense
    in which the word is used by the academic
    historian

14
(No Transcript)
15
Historical Context
  • Belief in witchcraft was widespread
  • Supernatural powers were supposed to come from
    the Devil
  • Believed that a witch could send out her spirit
    to cause harm

16
Historical Context
  • The Puritans traveled to North America to escape
    religious persecution
  • Life was serious and strict dancing and singing
    were banned
  • The settlers of Massachusetts were some of the
    first Europeans to live in this part of North
    America

17
Historical Context
  • They were fighting a physical battle with the
    wilderness, the climate, and the Native Americans
  • Constant threat of losing everything made them
    paranoid, and even more likely to believe in
    suggestions of witchcraft

18
Larger Context
  • The persecution of accused witches by the courts
    of Salem and resulting mass hysteria parallel
    the persecution of supposed Communists by the
    HUAC and the hysteria created by McCarthyism and
    the Red Scare
  • Miller saw similarities between the attempts of
    governments to control the actions of individuals

19
Motifs
  • injustice
  • mass hysteria
  • guilt
  • integrity
  • vengeance
  • power
  • jealousy
  • honesty
  • greed
  • pride
  • hypocrisy
  • courage

20
The Children
  • Abigail Williams Rev. Parriss niece fired by
    the Proctors
  • Mary Warren Proctors servant
  • Betty Parris Rev. Parris daughter
  • Mercy Lewis
  • Susanna Walcott

21
The Adults
  • Reverend Parris religious leader of community
  • Tituba Parriss servant from Barbados
  • Reverend Hale expert on witchcraft
  • Sarah Good accused of being a witch

22
The Couples
  • John Proctor average farmer, had an affair
  • Elizabeth Proctor knows about the affair
  • Thomas and Ann Putnam lost all children except
    Ruth use trial for personal gain
  • Giles Corey argues a lot funny character
  • Martha Corey a good woman likes to read
  • Francis and Rebecca Nurse good reputations
    very respected

23
The Court
  • Deputy Governor Danforth head of the court
    sent to rule over trials and sentence those found
    guilty
  • Judge Hathorne judge who examines witches
  • Ezekiel Cheever hired to arrest accused witches
  • Marshal Herrick communitys police force
  • Hopkins works in the jail
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