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Contrast Between Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor

Contrast Between Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor

Create an outright contrast between the two protagonists – Abigail

Williams and Elizabeth Proctor. Examine how he has established this

dichotomy of character, and what does it add to the dramatic quality

and audience involvement in the play.

The “Crucible” By Arthur Miller

Miller attempts to create an outright contrast between the two

protagonists – Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor.

Examine how he has established this dichotomy of character, and what

does it add to the dramatic quality and audience involvement in the

play.

On the face of the play (“The Crucible”) it seems to be simply about the mass hysteria which led to the 1692 Salem Witchcraft trials, which talks about a handful of issues which are somewhat remote to a modern audience, who in turn find it relatively intricate to relate to such happenings. But as you study the play in more detail you realise that Miller not only stresses issues which were easy to relate to in the time in which it was set, but has also given the play a modern touch by stressing the rivalry between Abigail Williams and Elizabeth Proctor. Consequently Miller adds to the dramatic feel of the play by adding a series of modern touches and historic statements which makes the play not only relate to the happenings of witchcraft but also explore the crime of adultery, which makes the play more about the personal guilt of John Proctor. The play furthermore creates the “Crucible” in such a way as to illustrate how people react to mass hysteria, created by a person or group of people desiring fame (in this case Abigail because she is the main leader of all the happenings that go on in the performance), as people di...

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...adds to

the drama of the play by keeping the reader hooked to see which female

John will choose in the end. The play deliberately uses differences

to show us as the audience that there are clear contrasts between

Abigail and Elizabeth. Miller also composes the idea about religion

verses witchcraft by introducing once more a contrast between Abigail

and Elizabeth-Abigail is in an earthly court causing people’s deaths

and Elizabeth is in her own heavenly court which only she controls-.

The issues which are brought up in the play makes the dramatic piece

more relevant to today by making the play not only about the

happenings of witchcraft but about the crime of adultery, which makes

the play more about a love triangle between Abigail, Elizabeth and

John. This allows us to be captivated throughout the whole play as to

which woman John will finally choose!
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