The Crucible The Salem witch-trials, are an historic event that occurred duringthe Puritan era. It was the witch-trials that decided the fate of so many of theaccused. Arthur Miller, the author of The Crucible uses the Salem episode as aparallel to an event in the 1950s known as the “Red Scare”. Heassociates many incidents of the “Red Scare” with that of the Salemwitch-trials.
Such incidents as: witch-hunts, hysteria, and cupidity which allentwines with both the ” Red Scare” and The Crucible. One may ask,”What’s a witch hunt?” It could be described as “the searchingout and deliberate harassment of those with unpopular views”. In TheCrucible a group of girls start a witch-hunt as a cover up for their ownmisdoing. It results with the idea that naming names will pardon one fromexecution. The author tries to build up the reader and audience’s feelings on”shifting blame”, and points out that even though the accused waspardoned, the community will always have suspicions of them.
An outbreak ofpeculiar insanity called mass hysteria also infected Salem. The Crucibledemonstrates how fear can be spread through a community with such ease. It’s afear that someone may possess them or accuse them of being a possessor. Thisfear caused the hysteria throughout Salem.
Community grudges and cupidity alsotook a role in The Crucible. For instance Abigail is jealous of ElizabethProctor, so Abigail accuses her of witchcraft in order to get rid of her. Otherinstances occur when neighbors accuse each other of witchcraft over theopportunity to gain more land. This causes the community to slowly disintegrate.
Arthur Miller tells the story through John Proctor’s point of view. This makesthe audience sympathetic to the incidences that happen to him throughout theplay. He is a victim of the witch-hunt, hysteria and cupidity that meandersthroughout Salem. The reader or audience may not know that Arthur Miller was avictim of the “Red Scare” but his underlying point is that witch-huntoccurrences, hysteria, and cupidity are very possible and are still possible tothis day and it can be very disintegrating to a community.English Essays