Power Corrupts Essay

Power Corrupts Essay

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People want power because it gives them control and dominance over others. Power gives the person who has it the ability to do whatever they want, say whatever they want and make people do what they want. In the play The Crucible by Arthur Miller the whole plot revolves around the theme of power. There is a never ending conflict of characters to keep, assert and acquire power. The most prominent characters that ultimately hurt the community the most due to their greed and lust for power are Deputy Governor Danforth, Reverend Parris and Abigail Williams. Although their relationship with power is different from one another they all have one thing in common. Parris, Danforth and Abigail all contribute to the demise of Salem because of their greedy, selfish and desperate need and lust for power. Their desire for power leads each character to selfishly increase or attempt to preserve their own dominance and importance at the expense of the Salem community.
Reverend Parris realizes that if he loses respect he will also loose power. Power is the most important thing in Parris’s life. Every action or decion he makes is intended to get more power for himself or for keeping his power. In fact, Parris is so concerned with keeping his reputation and power in the community that he withholds valuable information about the girls and the witchcraft case from Governor Danforth. In the courtroom Proctor challenges the authority of the court and calls into question the good reputation and respect Paris has. Proctor says, “Mary, tell the Governor how you danced in the woods.” Parris replies, “Excellency, since I come to Salem this man has been blackening my name.” Proctor, “Abigail leads the girls into the woods your honor.” Parris “I can only sa...


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...ty tremendously just so she can feel valuable.
Each of these characters had one thing in common, their lust for power made them oblivious to the damage they were causing to the community. They were also all selfish because they each wanted power for themselves. Danforth wanted to assert his power and wanted to be the absolute authority. Parris wanted to preserve his power and led the girls, through their fear for him, to create the hysteria. Abigail totally abused her power and put Salem into a dreadful situation. One thing we can learn form this play is to limit the amount of power each person has, or else conflict will ensue. If one or two people have all the power they are willing do anything they can to stay in power and logically when there power or status is questioned they may resort to drastic, severe and even evil measures to preserve their power.

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