One can, however, get a good idea of the motivations behind his writing The Crucible from an article he wrote for The New Yorker October 21, The late playwright Arthur Miller never did the public the favor of conveniently listing one or more of the reasons he decided to write his parable of the anti-communist hysteria sweeping the country during the early s. As he wrote in that article:
An Artist's Answer to Politics By Arthur Miller As I watched The Crucible taking shape as a movie over much of the past year, the sheer depth of time that it represents for me kept returning to mind. As those powerful actors blossomed on the screen, and the children and the horses, the crowds and the wagons, I thought again about how I came to cook all this up nearly fifty years ago, in an America almost nobody I know seems to remember clearly.
In a way, there is a biting irony in this film's having been made by a Hollywood studio, something unimaginable in the fifties.
But there they are -- Daniel Day-Lewis John Proctor scything his sea-bordered field, Joan Allen Elizabeth lying pregnant in the frigid jail, Winona Ryder Abigail stealing her minister-uncle's money, majestic Paul Scofield Judge Danforth and his righteous empathy with the Devil-possessed children, and all of them looking as inevitable as rain.
I remember those years -- they formed The Crucible's skeleton -- but I have lost the dead weight of the fear I had then. Fear doesn't travel well; just as it can warp judgment, its absence can diminish memory's truth.
What terrifies one generation is likely to bring only a puzzled smile to the next. I remember how inonly twenty years after the war, Harold Clurman, the director of Incident at Vichy, showed the cast a film of a Hitler speech, hoping to give them a sense of the Nazi period in which my play took place.
They watched as Hitler, facing a vast stadium full of adoring people, went up on his toes in ecstasy, hands clasped under his chin, a sublimely self-gratified grin on his face, his body swivelling rather cutely, and they giggled at his overacting. Likewise, films of Senator Joseph McCarthy are rather unsettling -- if you remember the fear he once spread.
Buzzing his truculent sidewalk brawler's snarl through the hairs in his nose, squinting through his cat's eyes and sneering like a villain, he comes across now as nearly comical, a self-aware performer keeping a straight face as he does his juicy threat-shtick. McCarthy's power to stir fears of creeping Communism was not entirely based on illusion, of course; the paranoid, real or pretended, always secretes its pearl around a grain of fact.
From being our wartime ally, the Soviet Union rapidly became a expanding empire. InMao Zedong took power in China. Western Europe also seemed ready to become Red -- especially Italy, where the Communist Party was the largest outside Russia, and was growing.
Capitalism, in the opinion of many, myself included, had nothing more to say, its final poisoned bloom having been Italian and German Fascism. McCarthy -- brash and ill-mannered but to many authentic and true -- boiled it all down to what anyone could understand: It was as simple as that.
If our losing China seemed the equivalent of a flea's losing an elephant, it was still a phrase -- and a conviction -- that one did not dare to question; to do so was to risk drawing suspicion on oneself.
Indeed, the State Department proceeded to hound and fire the officers who knew China, its language, and its opaque culture -- a move that suggested the practitioners of sympathetic magic who wring the neck of a doll in order to make a distant enemy's head drop off.
There was magic all around; the politics of alien conspiracy soon dominated political discourse and bid fair to wipe out any other issue. How could one deal with such enormities in a play?
The Salem witch-hunt was the largest witch-hunt in colonial New England. people were accused of witchcraft in New England; of those were in Salem. Salem Witch Museum. Click on the town and city names on the map to view pictures (where available) and read about the sites in these locations. The witch-hunt panic in early modern Europe is an example of elites creating panic and elites panicking. More clearly, the panic of the elite created a panic in general. Because those higher up in society were just as at risk from witchcraft as the general public, arguably more so if witches were jealous, then their fear of witches was just as. In the ’s the Witch hunt seemed unnatural and silly, but now-a-days, the Red Scare and hunting down communists seems silly and unnecessary. A parallel to the play is when Miller states in his article, “The more I read into the Salem panic, the more it touched off corresponding images of common experiences in the fifties” (Miller 4).
The Crucible was an act of desperation. Much of my desperation branched out, I suppose, from a typical Depression -- era trauma -- the blow struck on the mind by the rise of European Fascism and the brutal anti-Semitism it had brought to power.McCarthyism was a search, or “witch hunt”, led by Senator Joe McCarthy, for Communists in the United States Government during the nineteen-fifties.
This “witch hunt” indirectly shed light upon “ one of the strangest and most awful chapters in human history”: The Salem Witchcraft Trials of What are some historical events similar to the Salem witch trials?
What are the common factors among all these events? Update Cancel. One modern event that always struck me as a modern witch hunt was the Satanic Ritual Abuse hysteria on the s. Like the Salem Witch trials this happened during a time of public anxiety and social.
Inspired by the McCarthy hearings of the s, Arthur Miller's play, The Crucible, focuses on the inconsistencies of the Salem witch trials and the extreme behavior that can result from dark desires and hidden agendas.
Miller bases the play on the historical account of the Salem witch trials. one of the chief instigators of the witch-hunt. "During the examination of Elizabeth Procter, Abigail Williams and Ann The more I read into the Salem panic, the more it touched off corresponding ages of common experiences in the fifties: Documents Similar To why-i-wrote-the-crucible-with-questions 1.
the witch of the blackbird pond. Oct 31, · Three hundred twenty-five years later, there are still some unresolved questions about the Salem witch trials. The questions aren’t about whether the people killed in — 19 executed by.
The Salem Witch Trials - COMPLETE. STUDY. PLAY. Book of Common Prayer, idolatry and ceremonial rituals. Theocracy. civil and ecclesiastical rule. - Practice became more obsolete during the 17th century, so Salem was rare Salem was on a much smaller scale than the rest of Europe.