The crucible?

The Crucible was first produced in 1953, during Senator Joseph McCarthy’s congressional investigations to root out suspected Communists in the State Department, the entertainment industry, and the U.S. Army. In his pursuit of Communists, McCarthy sometimes accused individuals on the basis of flimsy evidence and innuendo. In what ways do you think the crucible is a criticism of McCarthy and his ways?

1 Answer

  • 1 decade ago
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    Many times it has been said that if people learn form their mistakes they are doomed to repeat them. Such is the case throughout history. There are many different examples of this, but one example is the blatant similarities between the witch hunts in Salem Massachusetts and the era of McCarthyism. When looking at either one of theses events separately it is hard to believe that they could have actually happened, not only once but, twice. If one takes the time to look at both events simultaneously they are able to make many comparisons and enable numerous similarities be seen. In The Crucible Miller creates an analogy of the witch hunts in Salem to the investigation of communists by Joseph McCarthy.

    The Red Scare was a period of general fear of the communists dating back to the Cold War. Abigail Williams and Joseph McCarthy are similar in that they are all trying to draw a crowd of people astray. Both individuals accused innocent people of wrongdoings for their own selfish intentions; Abigail to gain the “love” of John Proctor and Joseph to be re-elected for senator. In both cases, if they were not the accusers, then they would have been the accused themselves.

    One of the many resemblance's that can be clearly seen is the way in which each of event, McCarthyism and the Salem witch hunts, had the ability to ruin a persons life through a simple accusation. An example of this is very evident in The Crucible. The character of John Proctor is accused of partaking in the crime of witchcraft. When it comes time to confess, he knows that confessing will save his physical life, but at the same time it will ruin his reputation. He said "Why must it be written?… Why must I say it?"

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