The Crucible- What Does Arthur Miller Suggest Are the Dangers Inherent in a Dualistic Universe
Arthur Miller suggests numerous different risks fundamental in a dualistic view of the universe in his play, The Crucible. He firstly provides those that strongly follow Evangelical Christianity, and can not confess their errors, however just blame others for their problems. In contrast, he then highlights to the reader those that have a more sensible view of Christianity, realizing their sins, and defending what they think is ethical.
By dividing the 2 conflicting elements of the world, Miller demonstrates the many possible threats in the village, which in the final stages come together to develop among the most dangerous clashes for an untainted religion. Set in Salem, Massachusetts, 1692, Miller presents among The Crucible’s complications, the dualistic ideology, as a contrasting issue among the people. The Puritan town, constantly staying in the light of God, are extremely spiritual, going to church every day, checking out only from the bible, and forbidding anything resembling a theatre or ‘vain enjoyment’.
It may appear that there is nothing harmful about a religious neighborhood, though within Salem people are continuously judging one another on how religiously pure they are, which triggers the initial stress. So when some teenage women get up to mischief, and bring the devil’s presence into the circumstance, people start implicating each other of who they think are not as pure as them. They even begin to implicate those they wish to get vengeance upon, of siding with Satan, producing prospective threats in the town.
Before long, Miller has actually divided Salem into 2 dualistic views: those who, as great Christians should, are more realistic about the presence of the devil in their neighborhood, and those who have been misguided into thinking Satan is ‘loose in Salem’, and who implicate their enemies of siding with the devil. Miller suggests that those who have a black and white view of the universe are the accusers in Salem, and are the cause for many of the risks evident in this town.
Thomas Putnam, who concerns himself as an ‘intellectual superior, accuses others in spite of his faults, and puts their lives in danger. When the word of the devil is spoken, Putnam and his partner seize the day to implicate Rebecca Nurse for the intentional deaths of 7 of their babies. Obviously, it can be seen that in 1692 it was quite typical for females to have miscarriages, though they were led to believe the devil should have had something to do with it. This accusation puts Rebecca Nurse’s life in threat, in addition to endangering the regard she holds within the neighborhood.
Miller foreshadows the threat Rebecca Nurse finds herself in through Mrs. Putman, when she says critically to Rebecca Nurse, ‘You believe it’s God’s work you should never ever lose a child, nor grandchild either, and I bury all but one?’ Goody Putnam’s words produce the preliminary accusation against Rebecca Nurse that in the end, take her life. Similarly, Samuel Parris, the reverend in Salem, who is always putting in ‘his best efforts to win the people and God to his side’, is likewise misguided into thinking that the devil is loose in the village.
A fine example of this is when Mr. Parris sides with Abigail, his silly niece, in believing that Betty has actually had a spell conjured on her by Tituba, one of the individualists in the town. He does this as a protection for his child, Betty Parris, and to avoid personal judgement. Due to his black and white view of the universe, he is misinformed into lying to withhold his safety, and in place, puts innocent Tituba’s life at danger.
Both Putnam’s and Parris’s Evangelical view of deep space cause them to incorrectly accuse other individuals, putting innocent villagers’ lives at threat. Miller suggests that those who refuse to uphold a dualistic view of deep space and speak their mind in Salem put themselves in danger. Reverend Hale is the only superior in Salem that combats to defend the people incorrectly accused of witchcraft. Not siding with those that are implicating others, he puts his task and, for that reason, his authority in threat.
Miller shows the danger Hale puts himself in when he begins to not just doubt Danforth’s judgement but likewise neglect his orders when he says, ‘I am a minister of the Lord, and I dare not take a life without there be evidence so immaculate no smallest qualm of conscience might doubt it’. By declining to sign anymore death warrants for Danforth, Hale puts the value of his position at stake, and loses much of his power in the courtroom. Simply as Hale refuses to include speaking his mind, John Proctor, a farmer in his thirties, rejects conjuring witchcraft.
John, being innocent, can not imagine living life with his dignity erased, making the tough decision to be separated from his family. One who, like Proctor, declines to admit to witch craft is the frail nurturer of Salem, Rebecca Nurse, who is faithful to her conscience, even after being accused of intentionally eliminating 7 of the Putnams’ kids. As goody Proctor says to Hale, ‘you will never ever think, I hope, that Rebecca trafficked with the devil’. This shows how the town views her as a kind of a saint, yet due to the corruption of others, she is implicated of siding with the devil, her life in jeopardy.
Both Hale, Proctor, and Rebecca Nurse’s inability to uphold a dualistic ideology puts them in grave risk from those who continue to think the devil is roaming Salem. When living in a dualistic universe many dangers are intrinsic for those fighting for what they believe in. Through characters and occasions Miller communicates these threats, and demonstrates what can happen when you speak your mind. Putnam, Parris, Hale, Proctor, and Rebecca Nurse all stubbornly stuck to their beliefs, and put others lives and their own in threat.