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The Crucible


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Title: The Crucible

(No Transcript)
New Terms Salem Witch Trials Allegory
  • The Crucible was written in 1953 by the American
    playwright Arthur Miller.
  • It is a dramatisation of the Salem witch trials
    of 1692.
  • Salem is a small town in the American state of
  • Miller wrote the play as an allegory of
  • McCarthyism is a term used to describe the action
    taken by the US Government, lead by Senator
    Joseph McCarthy, against people who were thought
    to be, or sympathised with, communists.

Salem Witch Trials
Salem Witch Trials
Salem Witch Trials
  • The Salem witch trials were a series of hearings
    and prosecutions of people accused of witch craft
    in colonial Massachusetts, between February 1692
    and May 1693.
  • Despite being generally known as the Salem witch
    trials, the preliminary hearings in 1692 were
    conducted in a variety of towns across the
    province Salem Village (now Danvers) Ipswich,
    Andover and Salem Town.

Arthur Miller
New Terms Communism
  • Communism is a revolutionary socialist movement
    to create a classless, moneyless, and stateless
    social order built upon common ownership of the
    means of production.
  • This movement significantly influenced the
    history of the 20th century, which saw intense
    rivalry between the "socialist world" (socialist
    states ruled by Communist parties) and the
    "western world" (countries with market
    economies), culminating in the Cold War between
    the Eastern bloc and the Free World.

Act One Opening Stage Directions
  • Stage directions are particularly important in
    this play. Not only do they help us visualise
    what is happening, but they also tell us things
    about the characters, the themes and historical
  • How does this bedroom compare with your own?
  • What does this house/room tell you about the
    inhabitants? Back these findings up with evidence.

Act One Opening Stage Directions
  • The room give off an air of clean spareness. The
    roof rafters are exposed, and the wood colours
    are raw and unmellowed.
  • What do these stage directions suggest about
    those who live in this house and the life they

These quotations are very telling about both
  • Abigail We did dance, uncle, and when you
    leaped out of the bush so suddenly,
    Betty was frightened and then she fainted.
    And theres the whole of it.
  • Parris It must come out my enemies
    will bring it out.

  • SD for Abigail innocently
  • What do you think? Is she innocent?
  • Parris asks Abigail if theres anything she
    hasnt told him about her leaving the Proctors.
    He is suspicious.
  • (Parris speaking to Abigail about Elizabeth
  • She come so rarely to the church this year
    for she will not sit so close to something so
  • What are the implications here about Abigail?

  • Mrs Ann Putnam a death-ridden woman.
  • What does this mean?
  • Mrs Putnam Mr Collins saw her goin over
    Ingersolls barn, and come down light as bird, he
  • Mrs Putnam Its death yknow, its death drivin
    into them, forked and hoofed.

Mrs Putnam
  • Mrs Putnam is intent on calling this witchcraft
  • She does offer an explanation as to why she
    thinks her Ruth has been affected
  • Why does she accuse Tituba?
  • What do you think of Ann Putnam?

  • SD for Mercy a fat, sly, merciless girl of
  • Mercy Have you tried beatin her? I gave
    Ruth a good one and it waked her for a
  • Parris If she starts for the window, cry for
    me at once.
  • Abigail Not I, sir Tituba and Ruth.
  • Abigail He saw you naked.

  • SD for Mary Warren She is seventeen, a
    sub-servient, naïve, lonely girl.
  • BETTY You drank blood, Abby! You didnt
    tell him that!
  • What does Abigail say happened to her parents?
  • The description of Proctor
  • Which quotations show us what Proctor is like?

  • Abigail what more do we know about her?
  • Find 2 quotations that give an insight into her
  • Analyse these quotations as you would in an

Abigail Williams
Abigail Williams
  • What do we know about her so far? How could we
    describe her?

  • ABIGAIL WILLIAMS, seventeen, enters a
    strikingly beautiful girl, an orphan, with an
    endless capacity for dissembling.
  • BETTY You drank blood, Abby! You didnt tell him
  • ABIGAIL Not I, sir Tituba and Ruth.
  • ABIGAIL I will come to you in the black of some
    terrible night and I will bring a pointy
    reckoning that will shudder you.
  • ABIGAIL Id almost forgotten how strong you are,
    John Proctor.
  • ABIGAIL A wild thing may say wild things.

  • ABIGAIL WILLIAMS, seventeen, enters a
  • strikingly beautiful girl, an orphan, with
  • an endless capacity for dissembling.

  • BETTY You drank blood, Abby! You didnt
  • tell him that!
  • ABIGAIL Not I, sir Tituba and Ruth.

  • ABIGAIL I will come to you in the black
  • of some terrible night and I will bring a
  • pointy reckoning that will shudder you.
  • ABIGAIL Id almost forgotten how strong
  • you are, John Proctor.

  • ABIGAIL A wild thing may say wild things.

  • I look for John Proctor that took me from my
    sleep and put knowledge in my heart! I never knew
    what pretence Salem was, I never knew the lying
    lessons I was taught by all these Christian women
    and their covenanted men! And now you bid me tear
    the light out of my eyes? I will not, I cannot!
    You loved me, John Proctor, and whatever sin it
    is, you love me yet!

  • Abigail Williams utters these words in an Act I
    conversation with John Proctor, clueing the
    audience in to her past affair with him. For
    Proctor, we quickly realize, their relationship
    belongs to the pastwhile he may still be
    attracted to her, he is desperately trying to put
    the incident behind him. Abigail, on the other
    hand, has no such sense of closure, as this quote
    makes clear. As she begs him to come back to her,
    her anger overflows, and we see the roots of
    bitterness beginning. But second, and perhaps
    more important, we see in this quotation a fierce
    loathing of the entire townI never knew what
    pretense Salem was, I never knew the lying
    lessons. . . . Abigail hates Salem - and its

Act 1 Part 1
  • Summarise the events so far.
  • Which characters have we met? For each character,
    write a paragraph explaining what you know about
  • Do you have any strong feelings about any of the
    characters? Do you really like any or them or

How can you summarise the appearance of these two
  • Rebecca Nurse
  • Giles Corey -

  • MRS PUTNAM You think it Gods work you should
    never lose a child, nor grandchild either, and I
    bury all but one? There are wheels within wheels
    in this village, and fires within fires!
  • She directs this to Rebecca Nurse. What is Mrs
    Putnam suggesting here?
  • Annotating quotations can help!

  • PUTNAM to Proctor I do not think I saw you at
    Sabbath meeting since snow flew.
  • What does this reveal about Putnam and Proctors
    relationship? What further insight does it give
    you on the society?
  • Remember, people were scared of God, the Church
    and the Devil. These settlers in New England left
    Europe because they felt it was falling to the
    Devil and sins such as alcohol, sex outside of
    marriage and atheism were becoming too common

  • Can you show the relationships and various
    tensions between the characters here? Who has a
    problem with whom? And why?

Giles Corey
Friendly Giles will help Proctor with work and
stands up for him
Proctor does not attend Church and disagrees with
the sending for Hale
Tension disagreement over land and dedication
to church
Giles tells Putnam he is wrong
Mercurial agree over church matters, disagree
over witch craft and ministry
  • Proctor argues over the proper ownership of a
    piece of timberland where Proctor harvests his
    lumber. Putnam claims that his grandfather left
    the tract of land to him in his will. Proctor
    says that he purchased the land from Francis
    Nurse, adding that Putnams grandfather had a
    habit of willing land that did not belong to him.
    Putnam, growing irate, threatens to sue Proctor.
  • The land dispute between Proctor and Putnam adds
    the final touch to the implication that the real
    issues in Salem have much more to do with
    intra-societal and interpersonal concerns than
    with supernatural manifestations of the devils

Reverend Hale of Beverly
  • What does Arthur Miller have to say about Hale?
    Look at his notes.
  • What are your first impressions of him? Find 2
    quotations that reveal an aspect of his
  • He praises Rebecca I suppose you look as such
    a good soul should. We have heard of all your
    great charities in Beverly.
  • - What does this suggest about her?

Hale and Proctor
  • HALE We cannot look to superstition in this.
    The Devil is precise the marks of his presence
    are as definite as stone.
  • Explain the irony in this statement.
  • IRONY An intentional contradiction between what
    something appears to mean and what it really
    means. Irony is normally conveyed through
    contradictions between either what is said and
    what is meant or appearance and reality. There
    are many forms of irony verbal irony, the most
    familiar form, involves speaking words which say
    something quite unlike what is meant (e.g., I
    just love to write papers).
  • Proctor leaves before Hale begins his work.
    Why did he go?
  • Could he have changed the outcome of events had
    be stayed?
  • What role do you see Hale playing in the rest of
    the play?

Burn the witch/book!
  • Giles story about his wifes reading a book
    stopping his prayers is an odd one. However, it
    is taken seriously by Hale. He, and others in the
    society, believe that
  • What other historical significance does book
    burning have (for both us and Arthur Miller)?
  • Why would someone burn a book?

Nazi Book Burning in 1933
  • The Act ends with Abigail leading a hysterical
    chorus of accusations of witchcraft. She is by
    far the most vocal.
  • List those who have been accused.
  • Go on to list those who have been accusing can
    you give a reason for each of their actions?

Accused Accuser Why?
Goody Good
Goody Osburn
Bridget Bishop
George Jacobs
Goody Howe
Martha Bellows
Goody Sibber
Alice Barrow
Goody Hawkins
Goody Bibber
Goody Booth
Abby/Mrs Putnam
Prejudice? Hate?


Mass Outcry
  • What made Tituba accuse Goody Good and Goody
    Osburn of witchcraft?
  • Why did Abigail begin accusing? What about
  • Was the reaction by the adults in the room
  • What is your reaction to this scene?

How do you test for a witch?
  • These witches will now all be put on trial for
    witchcraft. The punishment is death.
  • How would you give someone a fair trial for
  • History of Witchcraft

Millers Notes
  • Miller wrote the play with the intention of it
    being performed. He included many notes on
    characters and on the setting to ensure those
    staging or reading the play would be sure of he
  • Look at the extracts from the play you have in
    the table. Fill out the analysis part.
  • Once this is completed, look back over the
    extracts. Pick 3 phrases that accurately describe
    Salem in Act. In a paragraph, explain why you
    have chosen these phases.

  • LI I can discuss the plays theme and find
    evidence to support my ideas
  • At this point, two of Millers major themes are
    Hysteria and Fear.

  • Who is involved in the mass hysteria at the end
    of Act 1?
  • Why do they become involved?
  • Often at Higher, you are asked to write about a
    theme which is important to you/society/young
    people today.
  • Is Hysteria one of these themes?

  • Can you think of reasons for mass hysteria? BBC
  • Top 10
  • Screaming Girls
  • 1960s

(No Transcript)
Hysteria and Fear
  • Find 2 quotations that show the hysteria
    beginning. Go on to explain what the quotes show.
  • Find 2 quotations that show WHY the hysteria
    happens discuss the roots of it. Go on to
    explain what the quotes show.

Hysteria Begins
  • Tituba No, no, dont hang Tituba! I tell him I
    dont desire to work for him!
  • Putnam Sarah Good? Did you ever see Sarah Good
    with him? Or Osburn?
  • Abigail I want to open myself! I want the light
    of God, I want the sweet love of Jesus! I danced
    for the devil!

The Roots of the Hysteria - Fear
  • Abigail I say shut it Mary Warren! (p.16)
  • Proctor Do you look for whippin? (p.19)
  • Parris You will confess yourself or I will take
    you out and whip you to your death, Tituba!
  • Putnam This woman must be hanged! She must be
    taken and hanged! (p.36)

  • Also consider the idea of oppression. The people
    of Salem lead very restricted lives both the
    Church and society forbade them many liberties.
  • Women in particular especially young,
    unmarried women had little or no power. They
    had no financial independence and their rights
    were connected to their husbands/fathers.
  • Their lives would be controlled by their lack of
    means, childbirth and fear.
  • The young women of Salem lead by Abigail had
    never had a voice before. No-one had ever
    listened to them before.

Act Two
  • The setting is evening, eight days after the
    events of Act 1.
  • The enclosed atmosphere is continued as Act 2
    is set in the main room of Proctors house.

John and Elizabeths Relationship
  • John seasons his food, then complements Elizabeth
    on how well she has seasoned the food.
  • - What does this illustrate about their feelings
    towards one another?
  • Johns relationship with his wife is uneasy and
    constantly changing. Their first appearance
    together is full of subtle hints of an unhappy
    marriage, despite Johns attempts at kindness.
  • - Find examples of this unease.
  • Explain clearly why you think Miller directs
    Elizabeth to receive Johns kiss?

  • Mary Warren is discussed.
  • She was originally described as a mouse. Does
    this description still apply?
  • What does the change in Mary represent?
  • Examine the way Elizabeth describes events in the
    town and how this contrasts with the
    (superficially) peaceful mood in the house.
  • Find two remarks made by Elizabeth that point to
    the rise in Abigails power in the past few days.
  • Johns first test comes when Elizabeth asks him
    to go to Ezekiel Cheever. He refuses to take
    action. Why do you think this is?

  • John admits to having been alone with Abigail.
  • What do you think this revelation does to
    Elizabeths faith in John?
  • What do you think is Johns main concern his
    own good name, Abigail, or the relationship with
    his wife?
  • You forget nothin and forgive nothin
  • Is this resentment justified, or is it the
    result of Johns guilty conscience?
  • Although Johns independence and refusal to
    accept authority can later be regarded as noble,
    here it leads to an expression of guilt through
  • The magistrate sits in your heart shows John
    has to look to the demands of his own conscience
    for decisions, just as he will have to do later

Key Points
  • Pick out 2 or 3 key points in this scene where
    Miller shows the audience how the hysteria has
    overcome Salem.
  • Quotations can be used but often a clear
    explanation of what is happening in the plot is

Key Points
  • Mr Proctor, in open court she near to choked us
    all to death. Mary Warren, p.47.
  • It is clear to the audience as Mary explains
    further that this was not possible. Mary, and the
    other girls, truly believe Sarah Good almost
    killed them with witchcraft. This is punishable
    by death. Miller shows the audience the extent of
    the hysteria in Salem.

Key Points
  • Mary Warren goes on to explain that the more
    Sarah Good denied her guilt, the more that she
    remembered what Sarah Good had done to her over
    the years. (p.47)
  • It is unbelievable to both the Proctors and the
    audience. As we listen to Mary Warrens confident
    assertions from her day in court, the mood
    changes from one of disbelief and disdain to
    apprehension. If Sarah Goods denials make young
    girls remember her trying to kill them, what
    else might they remember?

Key Points
  • I saved her life today! Mary, to Elizabeth,
  • Silence follows this outburst.
  • How has the mood changed?

Proctor has been angry, and about to whip Mary,
but this revelation stops him in his tracks. He
is aware of Abbys hatred for Elizabeth but he
did not see this coming. The mood becomes one of
absolute shock and almost panic as both the
audience and the Proctors think about the
consequences that could occur.
Mary Warren
  • Mary Warren comes across as a naïve, immature
    young girl in this scene.
  • Find 2 quotations that show this and analyse the
    language sufficiently to show this.
  • Find the evidence by which the women are

Elizabeth and John Proctor
  • Find and analyse 1 quotation that shows how
    Elizabeth reacts to her being accused.
  • Find and analyse 1 quotation that shows Johns
    reaction to Elizabeth being accused.

Act 2
  • LI I can take notes to show my understanding of
    the plot and characters.
  • I can find evidence and analyse the literary
    techniques used to show how they create mood and
    atmosphere. (Textual Analysis practise!)
  • I can discuss the themes the playwright explores

Act 2 - The Poppet
  • Who do we know to now be accused?
  • Why is this so shocking? What other details do
    we have about this?
  • Why is the poppet significant?
  • How do you think the needle got in the poppets
  • What do you think is Mary Warrens part in this?

  • On pages 60-61, it is clear that Proctor is
    becoming increasingly frustrated by these
  • Find evidence to show his increasing frustration.

Proctor asks, What signifies a poppet? and
continues to ask questions as Cheever discovers
the needle. The stage directions say he is angry
and bewildered (p.61). The audience is also
confused and concerned that the court are
believing Abigail and taking the needle in
the poppet as evidence of Elizabeths guilt.
Key Quotations - Proctor
  • If she is innocent!... (Pg 63 )
  • I will fall like an ocean on that court! (Pg 64
  • with a deep hatred of himself Good. Then her
    saintliness is done with. We will slide together
    into our pit. (pg66)
  • My wife will never die for me! I will bring your
    guts into your mouth but that goodness will not
    die for me! (pg66)

  • The atmosphere in this scene is very tense. This
    is created by the fear of the unknown and the
    shock of the revelations. It slowly builds up
    from Marys arrival to the end.
  • Re-read this section. Find evidence to that
    conveys how tense the atmosphere is and how it
    builds up.
  • Write 4-5 paragraphs that explores how
    tension is created in this scene.

  • When Hale arrives and questions that Proctor on
    their faith and reputation, John is angry. He
    states, My wife was sick this winter, and I
    surely did come when I could and when I could not
    I prayed in this house. He is defensive, making
    all the characters, as well as the audience,
    tense. Tension is also created by the lie that
    Proctor has told the audience knows Elizabeth
    was not sick. They both stayed away because of
    Abigail Williams. John could not face his guilt
    and Elizabeth was humiliated and did not want to
    have to converse with her former employee.

  • The tension rises further when Ezekiel Cheever
    arrives. Proctor has mentioned him previously,
    telling Elizabeth he would go to Cheever to
    relieve her of her charges. He arrives to arrest
    Elizabeth. He questions her about the poppet.
    Abigail has had a needle stuck in her belly by
    Elizabeths spirit. When a needle is found in
    the poppet, Cheever is convinced of Elizabeths
    guilt. Proctors angry repetition of What
    signifies a poppet? creates tension as he cannot
    contain his anger and frustration. Elizabeth
    cries The girl is murder! She must be ripped out
    of the world! We have never seen her this
    emotional now and the audience wonder how she may
    react next. Cheever takes this outburst as
    further proof of guilt, provoking Proctor to
    snatch his warrant from his grasp.

Fear and Faith
  • The theme of Fear is explored in Act 2. It is a
    different fear from before.
  • What are the characters scared of now?
  • Miller uses the characters faith in God as a
    motif throughout this Act.
  • Find at least 3 examples of this. Give a brief
    explanation of what they show.

Elizabeth Proctor
  • Elizabeth is arrested and this shows a different
    side to her character. She is a realist- she
    recognises the inevitability of her arrest and
    makes preparations for the family. She
    demonstrates great control and puts her own
    safety last.
  • Do you believe that she is coldsnivelling, as
    Abigail says? Discuss in light of the present
  • In your own words, explain why Elizabeth Proctor
    has been arrested. What has lead to this? What
    crime has she committed?
  • As an audience member, what is your reaction to
  • What would you like to see happen now?
  • What do you think will happen now?

Act 3
  • We are introduced in this scene to the workings
    of the court and to the chief magistrate,
  • He is the Deputy Governer. He believes in what he
    is doing and can see no wrong in the courts
  • He seems to have a limited understanding of human
    nature and cannot conceive that the girls are
    anything other than what they say they are.

Act 3
  • This Act is interesting as the power shifts. Note
    down who has the power and when.
  • Miller is known for his use of stage directions.
    What is the significance of the stage directions
    in this Act?

Act 3
  • Look at page 73-74. Why has Elizabeth said
  • she is pregnant?
  • Danforth We have thought it too
  • convenient to be credited.
  • Explain the hypocrisy in this statement.
  • Page 82 - Put Danforths large speech into your
    own words to show what his point is.
  • How does Miller want the audience to feel about

Act 3
  • Danforth makes it clear to the girls that Mary
    Warren is calling them all liars. He tells them
    that God damns all liars, children or not. He
    suggests that Mary Warren may be possessed by the
    devil and if this is the case she will be
    executed. He urges them to tell the truth.

Act 3
  • In this act the tragedy of John and Elizabeth is
    acted out. John is forced to admit his adultery,
    Elizabeth lies to save him, and Abigail triumphs,
    although she loses what she so desperately
    sought- the love and possession of John.
  • How does Miller create tension when
    Elizabeth is questioned?

Act 3
  • How does the court react to Giles claim that
    Putnam is reaching out for land?
  • What does his comment Youre hearing lies do to
    the credulity of his own evidence?
  • What is the reaction to Francis Nurses claim
    that the girls are frauds?
  • Find a quote that shows the hopelessness of
    arguing against convoluted (complicated/intricate)

Act 3
  • Reverend Hale now seems disturbed, whereas John
    Proctor is calm.
  • Find evidence to back this up.
  • Comment on the quote We burn a hot fire it
    melts down all concealment.

Act 3
  • The argument about the poppet adds a touch of the
    ridiculous to the proceedings.
  • Find a quote by John that links in with this.
  • Why can Mary Warren not faint now?
  • How do a) Danforth, and
  • b) Abigail respond to this?
  • Do you notice any similarities between Abigails
    behaviour now and in Act 1?
  • Comment on the dramatic change in John Proctor
    form a controlled man to one who physically
    attacks Abigail.

Act 3 - Hale
  • Hale states at this time that he cannot shut
    his conscience indicating his anguish. He is
    now prepared to defend John and Elizabeth.
  • How accurate do you consider Hale to be in his
    claim that private vengeance lies beneath the
    courts charges?
  • How does Abigail react at this point?
  • Her manipulation of this event shows the power
    and the far-reaching nature of hysteria.
  • A fire, a fire is burning! I hear the boot of
    Lucifer, I see his filthy face! And it is my
    face, and yours, Danforth!God damns our kind
    especially, and we will burn, we will burn
  • John gives a different interpretation of fire. He
    implies that Danforths fires are Lucifers and
    help to conceal falseness. This is a powerful
    condemnation but ironically it reflects the fraud
    in Johns own heart.
  • The fact that Hale quits the court and the
    proceedings helps to add weight to Johns words.

Act 4
  • Act 3 ends with a climax. Proctor is arrested.
    His words echo in the ears of the other
    characters and the audience.
  • God is dead!
  • The audience has seen the justice that this
    court doles out and we are left feeling anxious
    and tense about the future of John Proctor.

Act 4
  • The scene opens at daybreak, some three months
    later, in a cell.
  • This cell is very oppressive. In contrast to the
    previous acts, no sun pours or streams through
    the windows, no open door gives a glimpse of
    green fields. The place is in darkness and the
    moonlight merely seeps through the bars. This
    idea is strengthened by the high barred window
    and the heavy door.

  • The devil bird seen by Sarah and Tituba could
    serve as a reminder of the bird that Abigail and
    the others saw in Act 3. In what ways, however,
    does this seem different?
  • How is Hale now regarded by the authorities? What
    does he feel towards his ministry now?
  • Hale and Parris pray together here. Why does this
    seem strange? Provide a brief character analysis
    of Parris at this stage.
  • List some of the devastations affecting the
    community as described by Cheever.

  • Revd. Hale was previously concerned with saving
    souls and driving out the Devil now he seems
    more interested in saving lives. His change in
    attitude should reflect the views of the audience
    at this point, identifying and appreciating the
    difference between saving souls and saving lives.
  • Why has Parris waited two days before telling the
    court of Abigails disappearance? Examine Parris
    language here. What is he most concerned with?
    Has he really changed?
  • Why does her flight have serious implications for
  • What is Danforths reaction to events in Andover?
  • What do the answers of the previous questions
    tell you about the character of Danforth?

  • Danforth does not seem unduly moved by Abigails
    disappearance and the girls are not mentioned
    again. Despite the fact that the court owes its
    existence to their accusation, they seem
    irrelevant now the witch-hunt has taken on a
    momentum of its own.
  • What can you determine about Parris mental state
    from his reaction to the dagger?
  • Comment on the stage directions regarding Hale
    being steeped in sorrow.
  • Consider Danforths argument that to pardon the
    condemned would only cast doubt upon the guilt
    of them that died until now. Do you have any
    sympathy for his argument or do you think the
    judgement is rooted in pride?
  • Examine Hales speeches on pages 104/105. How is
    his guilt evident?
  • Why does he feel doubly damned for counselling
    the people to lie, to confess sins of which they
    are innocent?
  • Why do you think Elizabeth called this advice of
    Hales the Devils argument?
  • Do you think Elizabeths reaction to him is fair?
    Do you share her sense of what is right and what
    is wrong?

  • What does Proctors refusal of cider show of his
    character, even after months in prison?
  • What effect does Giles death have on Proctor? In
    what way does it show a build up pressure on him?
  • a) John is about to confess but stops when
    Rebecca enters - why? (p.112)
  • b) What does her standpoint illustrate to him and
    to the audience?
  • c) However, feels he is in a different position
    to Rebecca. Why?

  • Proctor knows he has his wifes support in
    whatever he decides but she declines to advise
    him. Is she right to do this? From what you think
    of her character, what do you think she really
    feels about Johns initial decision to confess?
  • Elizabeths response that John should forgive
    himself is strange yet shows her understanding
    of the situation is deeper than her husbands.
    What has she recognised?
  • Examine Elizabeths moment of truth, shown
    through her remark, It needs a cold wife to
    prompt lechery. (pg109)
  • In light of these revelations, was Abigail right
    in her judgement of Elizabeths coldness?

  • Then who will judge me?
  • There are two answers to John Proctors question
    God, and John Proctor. Proctor recognises that a
    false confession would be a lie, and therefore a
    sin. Coming to terms with this helps him find the
    strength to act according to the dictates of his
    own conscience later on.
  • Find words from this dialogue (pg109-110) which
    show Johns conscience.
  • Explain Danforths error of judgement in bringing
    Rebecca before John.
  • What was his intention?
  • What was the outcome?

  • Consider the dramatic pacing of the climax of
    this Act and indeed the play as a whole. In one
    sense, we want Proctor to survive, he seems safe,
    then suddenly he changes his mind in a dramatic
    twist, has one short speech of justification,
    then is swept to his death at the final curtain.
  • Miller explores the theme of reputation. Explain
    how the crux of Proctors problem is highlighted
    by his speech, I want my name. (pg115)
  • In what way is the tearing of the confession
    different to the tearing of the warrant in Act 2?
    How is John different?
  • Parris is in deadly fear Hale condemns Johns
    decision as stemming from pride and vanity.
    Is Hale more interested in the confession for
    personal reasons? How does he compare with

  • Create a flow chart detailing the events that
    lead to Proctors hanging include quotes

I mean to please you, Elizabeth. John loves his
wife and wants to do the right thing.
That goodness will not die for me! Proctor will
do anything to save Elizabeth. He recognises that
she is good and he is not.
No Abby, thats done with. Proctor refuses Abby
creates anger and resentment in her.
She wont sit so close so something so spoiled.
Proctors mistake was having an affair with Abby.
He has his goodness now. God forbid I take it
from him. Elizabeth understands Proctors
point. He needs to die for himself and for Salem.
It is a whores vengeance. Proctor tells the
court of his affair. He admits his sin to save
Elizabeth purge himself.
God is dead! Proctor denounces the church and
the court for their convoluted and flawed logic.
I can, and theres your first marvel that I
can. Proctor shows he is happy to die to show
the court how wrong they have been.
Theme Characters involved Points in play Quotations Audience Reaction
Reputation/ Self-Respect
Abigail Girls Putnams Danforth
Act 1 Betty wakes Act 2 Cheever discovers the
poppet Act 3 Girls attacked
I want to open myself! Mr Proctor, in open
court she near to choked us all to death.
Astounded, confused, shocked
Tituba Mary Warren Abigail Proctor
Act 1 Titubas confession Act 2- Proctor fears
for Elizabeth Act 3 Mary
I tell him I do not desire to work for him! I
will go your way no more!
Scared for Elizabeth/Proctor Admire them for
overcoming it Shocked at A MWs actions
Hale Proctor Rebecca Danforth
Act 1 Hales entrance Act 2 Hales
questions Act 4 The trial
They are weighted with authority. Do you know
your commandments? God is dead
Concerned at the confidence put in the
church Dismayed by the outcome of the holy trial
Act 2 Johns self-hatred Act 4 Proctors
refusal to sign, Rebecca the Coreys refuse to
We admire those who refuse to confess. We pity
Proctor for his death but respect his decision
Proctor Rebecca Giles/ Martha
Then who will judge me? Because it is my
name! More weight. It is a lie. How may I
damn myself?
  • LI I can analyse Millers language and

  • Because it is my name! Because I cannot have
    another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself
    to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the
    feet of them that hang! How may I live without my
    name? I have given you my soul leave me my name!

This speech highlights the theme of
reputation/self-respect. Proctor cannot sign his
name because it is a lie and he could not live as
an honest man if he signs it.
Proctor, Act 4, pg 115
This reveals that Proctor is a very moral man. He
is honest and cannot live with himself if he
lies. He could not tell his children to be honest
if he is not. He refuses to compromise.
The repetition of the word lie shows how
strongly Proctor feels about it. He wants them to
understand the power of the word. The exclamation
marks show his strong emotions he is shouting,
he is frantic. He needs them (and us) to
understand. I am not worth the dust on the feet
of them that hang conveys how humble he feels.
He feels those who have refused to confessed and
died for it. If he confesses he will not be
dishonouring their memory.
Proctor does not want his name to be written in
the history books as either a man who has worked
with the devil or as a liar. He wants to live but
he does not want the name of John Proctor to be
synonymous with liar.
In the last sentence, Proctor tells them that he
has already given away his soul by lying. He has
shamed himself (to Elizabeth, the community) and
damned himself (to God). He has given away the
thing that is most precious to a person. Proctor
wants to be left with something to help him carry
on his life his reputation.
  • If she be innocent! Who do you never wonder if
    Parris be innocent or Abigail? Is the accuser
    always holy now? Were they born this morning as
    clean as Gods fingers? Ill tell you whats
    walking in Salem vengeance is walking Salem. We
    are what we always were in Salem, but now the
    little crazy children are jangling the keys of
    the kingdom, and common vengeance writes the law!

Proctor is right in so far as he knows Abigail is
wrecking vengeance on him. He is appalled at the
weight the court and community is putting on the
testimonies of the young girls.
Proctor, Act 2, Pg 63
The purpose of this speech is to stop them
arresting his wife. He knows she is only in
danger because of his actions. He is angry and
wants them to understand she is not guilty but
the girls are.
  • The image of jangling the keys of the kingdom
    refers to the gates of the Kingdom of Heaven. The
    children seem like jailers they hold the power
    to condemn people to Heaven or Hell. The audience
    feels shocked as they realised how much power
    these hysterical children have.
  • Common vengeance writes the law! again suggests
    the law has been usurped in its power to control
    society by the emotions and agendas of the girls

Proctor shows his emotions again in this speech.
We see how frustrated he is by the actions of the
court and of Salem as a whole. We can also see
how much he loves Elizabeth as he tries to plead
with Cheever and Hale to save her. When he talks
of vengeance, it reveals the self-knowledge that
has as he realised it is his actions that have
created Abigails vengeance.
The idea of vengeance as opposed to revenge
is biblical as is the kingdom of Heaven being
discussed. The audience is reminded of how much
this society relies on the bible and how much
weight Christianity has in Salem.
  • But you must understand, sir, that a person is
    either with this court or he must be counted
    against it, there be no road between. This is a
    sharp time, now, a precise time we live no
    longer in the dusky afternoon when evil mixed
    itself with good and befuddled the world. Now, by
    Gods grace, the shining sun is up, and them that
    fear not light will surely praise it.

Danforth, Act 3, pg 76
The theme of Faith is explored by Danforths
speech. He focuses on using biblical language,
suggesting that the Devil has been cast aside and
God is once again present in Salem. Danforth has
an unshakable faith and is conducting proceedings
in the name of God.
This speech is a warning to Proctor. Danforth
wants him to understand that if he does not obey
the courts orders or findings then it will be
assumed he is trying to go against them and
against God. The next step of this assumption is
that he is involved in the witchcraft.
  • Millers language seems appropriate to 1692
    because of the religious references such as
    evil and Gods grace. His sentence structure
    and word order, such as them that fear not
    light will surely praise it is out-dated. This
    sounds like a biblical quotation.

The symbolism of dusky afternoon and the
shining sun is up conveys Danforths belief that
times are changing in Salem. He feels that it
used to be murky and shadowy before when the
Devil ruled, but now the court and God is in
session it is bright, sunny and clear.
Danforths character is further revealed to us
here as we see his unwavering belief in God and
his piety. He is focused on pursuing what he sees
as Gods will and is determined to punish all who
stand in the way. He is not vindictive or
menacing but he sees the world in black and
white, as many in Salem do. If someone does not
fully comply with the court, or if they in some
way question the proceedings, they must be with
the Devil. This is Gods court if you go
against it, you are against God.
  • Let you not mistake your duty as I mistook my
    own. I came into this village like a bridegroom
    to his beloved, bearing gifts of high religion
    the very crowns of holy law I brought, and what I
    touched with my bright confidence, it died and
    where I turned the eye of my bright faith, blood
    flowed up. Beware, Goody Proctor cleave to no
    faith when faith brings blood. It is a mistaken
    law that leads you to sacrifice.

Through this the theme of Faith is explored. Hale
believed firmly that he was to do Gods work in
Salem when he saw the outcome of this he had to
change his mind. In Salem, this strict adherence
to what is perceived as Gods will has resulted
in deaths. To Hale, these are murders in the name
of religion.
Hale, Act 4, pg 105-106
Hale is trying to persuade Elizabeth Proctor to
convince John to lie. Hale wants her to realise
that in this case the court and religion are
wrong. To save Johns life, he needs to turn his
back on this holy court and Gods will.
This speech reveals that Hale has had to change
his opinion and review his faith in God. Hales
turn around is admirable to the audience he has
not cleaved to his religion despite the
destruction. He has used his judgement to
denounce the proceedings in Salem, even though
this means he is effectively denouncing the God
and the church he has lived his life worshipping.
Hale is seen as brave and intelligent through his
actions and dialogue in Act 4.
Miller deliberately uses biblical word choice for
Hales speech. This shows his knowledge of
Christianity and life-long faith. His references
to gifts suggests his belief that Christianity
should be given freely (and accepted readily).
His speaks of sacrifice Jesus was executed to
save others. Perhaps this is what he is
suggesting is happening here
The image of I came into this village like a
bridegroom to his beloved, bearing gifts of high
religion conveys how Hale felt at the start of
the play. He was proud and pleased to come to
Salem to help them in their time of need. His
references to bright confidence and faith shows
that he saw himself as a kind of saviour but no
  • McCarthy Comparison
  • In your own words, explain how what McCarthyism
    is and how it links to The Crucible.

LI I understand how Hales character changes and
how important his character is for the audience
  • Hale Video
  • Hale Video 2
  • In your own words, explain
  • How Hales character changes
  • Why Hales character changes

  • LI I can understand more about the Higher
    critical essay exam and know what I will be asked
    to do

Higher Drama Questions
  • There are 4 types of drama questions
  • Character/Relationship
  • Key Scene/Turning Point
  • Beginning/Ending
  • Theme

Characters Relationships

Key Scene Why?

Turning Point?
  • You could argue that in Act 2 when Elizabeth
    Proctor is arrested and Proctor becomes angry and
    determined to overthrow the court that this is
    when his fate is sealed.

When Proctor sees that his attempts to get Mary
Warren to tell the truth and he screams God is
dead! that this is Millers turning point. There
is no way back for Proctor after this.
In Act4, when Rebecca Nurse is brought in front
of Proctor just before he signs his written
confession, the plot turns again. Proctor is
about to save his own life but the appearance of
the good, honest, condemned Rebecca Nurse makes
him sees his own lie for what it is
disrespectful and unjust.
A play with an effective opening
What makes an effective opening to a play?
Is this applicable to The Crucible?
Specifically, what makes this an effective opening?
A play with an effective edning
What makes an effective ending to a play?
Is this applicable to The Crucible?
Specifically, what makes this an effective ending?
Theme Characters involved Points in play Quotations Audience Reaction
Reputation/ Self-Respect
Abigail Girls Putnams Danforth
Act 1 Betty wakes Act 2 Cheever discovers the
poppet Act 3 Girls attacked
I want to open myself! Mr Proctor, in open
court she near to choked us all to death.
Astounded, confused, shocked
Tituba Mary Warren Abigail Proctor
Act 1 Titubas confession Act 2- Proctor fears
for Elizabeth Act 3 Mary
I tell him I do not desire to work for him! I
will go your way no more!
Scared for Elizabeth/Proctor Admire them for
overcoming it Shocked at A MWs actions
Hale Proctor Rebecca Danforth
Act 1 Hales entrance Act 2 Hales
questions Act 4 The trial
They are weighted with authority. Do you know
your commandments? God is dead
Concerned at the confidence put in the
church Dismayed by the outcome of the holy trial
Act 2 Johns self-hatred Act 4 Proctors
refusal to sign, Rebecca the Coreys refuse to
We admire those who refuse to confess. We pity
Proctor for his death but respect his decision
Proctor Rebecca Giles/ Martha
Then who will judge me? Because it is my
name! More weight. It is a lie. How may I
damn myself?
  • Choose a play in which there is a scene involving
    intense emotion.
  • Show how the dramatist makes you aware of the
    intensity of the emotion in the scene and discuss
    the importance of the scene to the drama as a
  • In your answer you must refer closely to dramatic
    techniques such as conflict, characterisation,
    key scene(s), dialogue, climax, exposition,
    denouement, structure, plot, setting, aspects of
    staging (lighting, music, stage directions)
    monologue, soliloquy

  • Conflict essay are character/relationship essays!

  • 1. Create a plan for an essay on this question in
    your group.
  • - For each paragraph of your essay, write
  • a) the part of the play you will be referring to
    (perhaps a page number or a quotation)
  • b) its relevance to the question (what it shows)
  • Para 1 Proctor starts to become frustrated by
    the courts convoluted logic (pg 83 dragons).
  • We see how difficult this is for Proctor the
    court can produce almost anything as evidence and
    he finds it hard to contain his anger and fear
    for Elizabeth.
  • 2. Once your plan is complete, we will
    carousel it round the class. The other groups
    can make comments, add suggestions and will give
    your plan a mark out of 10.

  • LI I can understand how to write a critical
    essay at Higher

T A S Q!
Title of your Text
Author of your text
Assume your marker hasnt read it!
Summary of your text (and perhaps of the scene)
Essay Question use your own words or the words
from the question
Do NOT use the phrase My essay question is
Exemplar Higher Introduction
  • Arthur Millers play The Crucible is set in
    1692 in Salem, Massachusetts, at the time of the
    infamous witch trials. It centres around the
    small, religious community of New World settlers.
    A black slave, Tituba, is found dancing in the
    woods with the local girls. The girls accuse her
    of witch craft to save themselves from
    accusations. They are lead by Abigail Williams. A
    number of other people are then accused of
    witchcraft, including the protagonist John
    Proctor and his wife Elizabeth. We find out
    Proctor has had an affair with Abigail and that
    she is motivated by vengeance. The other girls
    follow her lead hysterically. In Act 3 of the
    play, Proctor tries to save his wife from the
    gallows but is thwarted at every turn in what
    becomes a highly emotional scene. The scene is
    important to the play as a whole as we see
    Proctors true character and Millers portrayal
    of Proctors emotions has a huge effect of the

Introduction Top Tips
  • Do not use I
  • Firm up the essay question be definite about
    the play, the scene, the emotion, the importance
    to the play as a whole.
  • Assume the marker hasnt read the play

  • Each paragraph needs to contain certain
    information in a certain order. It doesnt matter
    what you are discussing, your paragraphs should
    all look like this
  • Statement Make your point about the play. Give
    the context of what is happening at this point in
    the play
  • Textual Evidence Primarily a quotation but can
    also be a detailed description of a plot point.
  • Analysis This may be a close analysis of word
    choice, imagery etc but also an analysis of
    characterisation, what it reveals about the theme
  • Respond to the question Give a direct answer to
    your essay question. Use words from that question
    to help you.

  • Proctor has come to the court with his house
    maid, Mary Warren. She has admitted to him that
    all of the allegations of witch craft, including
    against his wife Elizabeth, are false. However,
    the court can argue against with all of Proctor
    and Marys claims. They suggest that even though
    she says she did not keep poppets, she may have
    some hidden. Miller uses the stage direction
    furious to describe how Proctor says There
    might also be a dragon with five legs in my
    house, but no one has ever seen it. Proctor
    cannot contain his rage his impertinent comment
    to the court, that could potentially have him
    held in contempt, conveys how ridiculous this
    process is. He likens this talk of witches and
    poppets to fictional, mythical creatures.
    Proctor knows this is nonsense and is finding it
    difficult to make others understand. He cares for
    his wife and wants her to be freed. Millers
    characterisation reveals a man struggling to come
    to terms with what his society, and God, are
    doing to his family.

Essay Top Tips
  • Do not use I refer to the audience
  • Use complex sentences and sophisticated word
  • Emotive words struggling, frustration, rage -
    shows you have engaged with the play and
    understood it
  • Double check for technical errors
  • Critical terminology (as outlined above/below the
    essay questions) should be used but not forced

  • In your answer you must refer closely to
    dramatic techniques such as conflict,
    characterisation, key scene(s), dialogue, climax,
    exposition, denouement, structure, plot, setting,
    aspects of staging (lighting, music, stage
    directions) monologue, soliloquy

Choose a play whose main theme is made clear
early in the action. Show how the dramatist
introduces the theme and discuss how successfully
he or she goes on to develop it.
  • In your answer you must refer closely to
    dramatic techniques such as conflict,
    characterisation, key scene(s), dialogue, climax,
    exposition, denouement, structure, plot, setting,
    aspects of staging (lighting, music, stage
    directions) monologue, soliloquy

Choose a play which features the theme of good
versus evil. Show how the dramatist develops one
of theme and discuss how the exploration of this
theme enhances your appreciation of the play.
This will be your timed essay questions for 27th
The End
  • The Crucible - Trailer