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Is John Proctor A Tragic Hero

According to Terry Otten, “a tragic hero is both weak and strong, innocent and guilty,” indicating that a tragic hero must appeal and remain perceptible to the average, everyday man (3). John Proctor, a man of pride and courage, has a concealed sin that remains hidden from the public eye. Throughout the novel, Proctor connects himself to the main theme of intellectual unjust and hypocrisy by enduring the guilt and sin of adultery that remains inside himself. As he continues to right his wrongs, Proctor begins to face the injustice of his society, and relentlessly stands up to save his wife and the people of Salem from the ignominious reign and consequences of his immoral offense. Some characteristics that allow John Proctor to identify as a…show more content…
As John speaks to Elizabeth once he remains accused of witchcraft, he claims, “ I cannot mount the gibbet like a saint. It is a fraud. I am not that man,” to emphasize the realization of his guilty heart and soul (136). Proctor feels as though he no longer pertains to endure as a good man; therefore, he thinks that the accusation may of witchcraft remain true, but if he dies falsely condemned and people remember him as a martyr, this will also remain false. According to Otten, Proctor displays “strident moralism”, and continues to be “ dependent upon recognizing and accepting” his own fate (3). This illustrates the good-heartedness inside Proctor that reflects the hypocrisy of the town; whereas, the people of Salem have sins of their own, but John accepts his and knows that all people were indeed born evil, yet he dies as a result of this. As Danforth continues to apply the remorseless question of the law, Proctor refuses to name those of the accused claiming, “I speak my own sins. I cannot judge another” to enlighten his ultimate confession (141). This statement represents Johns recognition inside himself and the moment where he realizes that everyone emerges guilty of something, but he will no longer judge others based on what he has
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