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The Crucible: Act 1

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The Crucible: Act 1
"No Works Cited"

1. Mrs. Putnam

a. What she says:

“What have you done?” (Act 1, page 22)

“This is no silly reason Rebecca. My Ruth is bewildered... She cannot
eat.” (Act 1, page 23)

“Rebecca! The Doctor’s baffled!” (Act 1, page 23)

“You think it God’s works you should never lose a child… and I bury
all but one.” (Act 1, page 23)

b. What she means:

§ She means to blame someone for the death of her children.

§ She wants to get revenge for her babies.

§ She envy Rebecca for having many offspring

§ She is accusing Rebecca for conjuring the spirit of her daughter,
Ruth.

c. Evidence for what I think she means:

“Rev. Parris, I have laid seven babies unbaptised in the earth… They
were murdered Mr. Parris!” (Spoken by Mrs. Putnam, Act 1, page 12)

“Don’t you understand it sir? There is a murdering witch among us,
bound to keep herself from the dark” (Spoken by Thomas Putnam, Act 1,
page 12)

“I have eleven children, and I am twenty-six times a grandma…” (Spoken
by Rebecca Nurse, Act 1, page 21)

[To top it all, Mrs Putnam-who is now staring at the bewitched child
on the bed-soon accused Rebecca’s spirit of tempting her to iniquity…]
(Stage directions, Act 1, page 21)

d. Her objectives

-She wants to get revenged for all of her children and wants to prove
that a witch had murdered all of them.

e. Links between them

-The Nurses are the neighbours of The Putnams and they had a land war
with each other. The battle between them lasted for about two days.

f. My Understanding

- In my own view, Mrs Putnam is behaving like this because as you have
known, she had lost all of her babies right through their birth and
Ruth is her last one, and now, she’s afraid to lose her. She is also
bewildered of who will murder all of her children.

2. Reverend Parris

a. What he says:

“(Wondrous and relieved) what do you make of it, Rebecca?” (Act 1,
page 21)

“A wide opinion’s running in the parish that the Devil may be among
us, and I would satisfy them that they are wrong” (Act 1, page 22)

“…You people seem not to comprehend that a minister is the Lord’s man
in the parish; a minister is not to be crossed or contradicted.” (Act
1, page 24)

“He is not coming to look for devils!” (Act 1, page 22)

b. What he means:

§ He’s really confused about whether to talk about witchcraft or not
because he wants to save himself.

§ He doesn’t want anyone to know that his niece, Abigail and her
daughter, Betty as well as Tituba had danced in the woods.

§ He has loads of enemies and he wants to save himself.

§ He doesn’t want his house to be the centre of witchcraft.

c. Evidences:

“In my house? In my house Thomas? They will topple me with this!”
(Spoken by Rev. Parris, Act 1, page 13)

“(To Abigail) if she starts for the window, cry for me at once.”
(Spoken by Rev. Parris, Act 1, page 13)

“Now, Goody Ann, they only thought that were a witch, and I am certain
there be no element of witchcraft in here.” (Spoken by Rev. Parris,
Act 1, page 10)

“…It must come out or my enemies will bring it out… Abigail do you
understand that I have many enemies?” (Spoken by Rev. Parris, Act 1,
page 8)

“…my own household is discovered to be the centre of some obscene
practise!” (Spoken by Rev. Parris, Act 1, page 8)

d. His Objectives:

- He wants his name in the whole village to be clean and doesn’t want
anyone to know that he found the centre of witchcraft done in his
house. In addition, he does not want his enemies to put him down.

e. Links between them:

-Parris is the reverend of the village and he always does the mass in
the village and Proctor is a sinner who does not go to hear mass.
Their relationship is a bit bitter and this can be seen when Proctor
is going to join a party against Parris and his authority. Thomas
Putnam is one of the sons of the richest man in the village and he
always does false accusations.

Putnam: “No witchcraft! Now, look you , Mr.Parris-

Parris: “Thomas, Thomas, I pray you, leap not to witchcraft. I know
that you… would ever wish so disastrous a charge laid on me”

(Act 1, page 10)

f. My Understanding

- Parris is behaving like this because, he knows that his niece is
practising witchcraft, as he discovered them dancing in the woods and
how his daughter and Ruth are sick, and witch in that time are whipped
to death. He also doesn’t want his enemies to turn him down and since
he’s a reverend, he must keep his name safe.

3. Mr. Putnam

a. What he says:

“There be children dying in this village!” (Act 1, page 22)

“How may we blame ourselves...? I have one child left of eight and now
she shrivels!” (Act 1, page 22)

“When Rev. Hale comes, you will proceed to look for signs of
witchcraft here.” (Act 1, page 23)

“A moment Mr. Proctor, What Lumber is that you’re dragging, if I may
ask?” (Act 1, page 25)

“Why we are surely gone wild this year… That tract is in my bounds…”
(Act 1, pages 25-26)

b. What he means:

§ He wants to prove that he is the son of the richest man in the
village.

§ He wants to show that there is a witch murderer in the village.

§ He wants to put Parris down by letting Mr. Hale check his house
first for signs of witchcraft

c. Evidences:

[Thomas Putnam is the eldest son of the richest man in the village…]
(Stage direction, Act 1, page 11)

“Don’t you understand it sir? There is a murdering witch among us,
bound to keep herself from the dark” (Spoken by Thomas Putnam, Act 1,
page 12)

[It is not surprising to find that so many accusations against people
are in the handwriting of Thomas Putnam…] (Stage direction, Act 1,
page 11)

d. His Objectives:

- He wants to do revenge for the death of his 7 children and to his
daughter, Ruth. He also wants to put Proctor down.

e. Links between them:

-He claimed to own the lumber which is Proctor’s property now, which
he claims that he bought that lumber to Rebecca Nurse’s husband. They
have a bitter relationship with each other.

f. My Understanding

- Putnam is behaving like this because he wants to avenge the death of
his seven children and he does not want to lose his only daughter,
Ruth. He also wants to put some of his enemies down, and that for
example, is Proctor.

4. John Proctor

a. What he says:

“He may turn his head, but not to hell! “ (Act 1, page 22)

“You cannot command Mr. Parris. We vote by name in the society, not by
acreage.” (Act 1, page 23)

“…There are many others who stay away from church these days because
you hardly ever mention God any more.” (Act 1, page 23)

“Against you…? Why then I must find it and join it.” (Act 1, page 25)

“Your grandfather had a habit of willing land that never belonged to
him…” (Act 1, page 26)

b. What he means:

§ He means to tell that even though he does not go to church, he has
not turn to devil works.

§ He’s putting Thomas Putnam down by saying that ruling the village is
not by the number of acreage he got.

§ He’s showing a bitter relationship with Parris.

§ He wants to say to Putnam that he does not like his grandfather.

c. Evidences:

“…There are many others who stay away from church these days because
you hardly ever mention God any more.” (Act 1, page 23)

[…There is evidence to suggest that he had a sharp and biting way with
hypocrites…] (Stage directions, Act 1, page 16)

d. Objectives

- He wants to put Thomas Putnam down and wants to join a group against
Parris and his authorithy.

e. My Understanding:

- He’s basically one of Parris’ enemies as he wants to go and join a
group against him and his authority. I think he also does not care, at
the moment, about the witchcraft; the people in the village are
talking about.

“I have a crop to sow and lumber to drag home…” (Act 1, page 25)

5. Rebecca Nurse

a. What she says:

“I have eleven children, and I am twenty-six times a grandma…” (Act 1,
page 21)

“…I think we ought to rely on the doctor now and good prayer…” (Act 1,
page 22)

“There is prodigious danger in the seeking of loose spirits. I fear
it… Let us rather blame ourselves.” (Act 1, page 22)

“…I hope you are not decided to go in search of loose spirits, Mr.
Parris.”(Act 1, page 22)

b. What she means:

§ She wants everyone to know that there is no witchcraft happening in
the village.

§ She means that Betty and Ruth are just playing silly games and their
spirits are not conjured.

c. Evidences:

“A child’s spirit is like a child, you can never catch it by running
after it…” (Spoken by Rebecca Nurse, Act 1, page 22)

d. Objective:

- She does not want anyone to know that witchcraft is going on in the
village and that she conjured Ruth’s spirit. Evidence is seen in the
stage direction.

[To top it all, Mrs Putnam-who is now staring at the bewitched child
on the bed-soon accused Rebecca’s spirit of tempting her to iniquity,
a charge that had more truth in it than Mrs. Putnam could know] (Stage
directions, Act 1, page 21)

e. Links between them:

f. My Understanding:

- From my view, Rebecca is practicing witchcraft and had conjured
Ruth’s spirit, daughter of Mrs. Putnam. So to not accuse her of being
a witch, she always changes the subject by saying that it’s the
children’s problem and not witchcraft.

“A child’s spirit is like a child, you can never catch it by running
after it…” (Spoken by Rebecca Nurse, Act 1, page 22)

6. Giles Corey

a. What he says:

“Aye, and well instructed in arithmetic” (Act 1, page 24)

“I’ve changed my opinion of this man, John. Mr. Parris, I beg your
pardon. I never thought you had so much iron in you.” (Act 1, page 25)

“…Let’s get your lumber home, John. I feel a sudden will to work
coming on.” (Act 1, page 26)

b. What he means:

§ He doesn’t know whether to side with Parris or Proctor, but in the
end of their conversation, he finally comes with Proctor.

c. Evidences:

“Aye, and well instructed in arithmetic” (Act 1, page 24)

“I’ve changed my opinion of this man, John. Mr. Parris, I beg your
pardon. I never thought you had so much iron in you.” (Act 1, page 25)

“…Let’s get your lumber home, John. I feel a sudden will to work
coming on.” (Act 1, page 26)

d. Objectives:

- He wants everyone to know that he is not siding with any of them

e. Links between them:

- He and Proctor are both farmers whilst him and Putnam’s grandfather
has a bitter relationship (feud over land)

f. My Understanding:

-He basically doesn’t know whether to side with Parris or to John
Proctor. He is still confused about the happenings around him.



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"The Crucible: Act 1." 123HelpMe.com. 18 Apr 2014
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