The Crucible

The Crucible

Can a person\'s opinion equal their fate?

In Arthur Miller\'s The Crucible, John Proctor\'s stand in a society where
opinion drove fate created ignominy towards him and his beliefs. First
he hid his horrible sin inside, fearing the consequences. When he finally
did, he was placed in a tangled labyrinth of feelings as to what his next
action should have been. Lastly, it was Proctor\'s defiance and integrity
in his own self that proved him stronger than the entire community of Salem.

Proctor\'s tremulous feelings and general
unease of the situation built up to his defining point of confession. Church
and government came together to coercingly control Salem and its actions.

Proctor saw this and feared, for diabolism was a practice unheard of.

"You must understand, sir, a person is
either with this church or against it - there be no road between. We live
no longer in the dusky afternoon and evil mixed itself with good and befuddled
the world. Now by God\'s grace the good folk and evil entirely separate."
-Deputy Danforth

John contemplated his actions and reached
an influential decision towards what his fate would be - after all, he
believed, he could control it. As he stated defiantly, "I want my life...

I will have my life." After John confessed, he believed he had done Elizabeth
and the children good, for they were the wellspring of his life. He would
be free, accepted by Salem still.

The powerful effect of his trial and disagreement
and its conflicting with Salem\'s way of life had already left a silent
yet profound mark on everyone. Knowing that imperfection lurked among the
good folk, the government wished to announce to the world who the sinning
man was. Proctor was paradox to this - he wished nor believed anything
of the sort, as his name was the only thing left of him. The Church and
government robbed him of everything else that could make him man - his
honor, his morals, his shame. Towards the very end of his tribulation,
he states: "I do think I see some shred of goodness in John Proctor. Not
enough to weave a banner with, but white enough to keep it from such dogs..
show honor now, show a stony heart and sink them with it!" Horrified, he
could not accept anymore torture to himself. He thought he was free, nothing
more to give. Yet for Proctor, it was too much. A line had to be drawn
somewhere. That line was the good name of Proctor - and little did he know,
his opinion would drive his fate out of Salem and into the horrors of death.