McCarthyism v. The Crucible

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  • Characters
  • Themes
  • Eleanor is a Communist!
  • Blacklist
  • Andrew is a Communist!
  • Plot
  • 
  • Arthur Miller cheated on his wife but, when questioned, he refused to provide names of Communists to blacklisted, even though this refusal cost him his career. He believed Communism was immoral, and he would not support it ("American Masters" 00:10:25).
  • Miller is parallel to Proctor because...
  • Fear of being blacklisted caused people to name names of other supposed Communists to save themselves. This demonstrates the theme of fear warping judgement and being stronger than morals and honesty (Miller, "Why I Wrote the Crucible" 1).
  • Fear warping judgement also occurs in The Crucible...
  • Countless people were blacklisted, causing them to lose their family, career, and livelihood, even though many were innocent. The only way to save oneself was to name names, which Miller refused to do, to make others appear more guilty than oneself ("About Elia Kazan").
  • Blacklisting is parallel to witchcraft because...
  • 
  • John Proctor also cheated on his wife, and he refused to confess to witchcraft, even if it cost him his life. He refused to support the idea of witchcraft because he knew it was a lie and contradicted his morals. Therefore, he also would not provide names of other witches (Miller, The Crucible 142).
  • Fear of being accused of witchcraft led numerous Salem citizens to accuse others to save their own lives. Their fear caused them to abandon honesty, thoughtfulness, and good judgement (Miller, The Crucible 48).
  • "I saw Sarah Good with the Devil! I saw Goody Osburn with the Devil!" (Miller, The Crucible 48).
  • Countless Salem residents were accused of witchcraft, costing them their lives, even though they were innocent. The only way to save oneself was to confess, accuse others, and follow along with the lies. Proctor refused to do this and lost his life in return (Miller, The Crucible 133).
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