Witchcraft Issue in The Crucible By Arthur Miller
Witchcraft is the practice of magic, especially black magic. In the play, The Crucible, by Brozo, William G. Ph.D, witchcraft is the main issue in the story. Both the Puritan environment and the past experiences of one main character established one victim of the story, even though some consider her an instigator. This character, Abigail Williams, is regarded as a victim because of her love affair, society, and the way she was upraised.
One reason how Abigail is a victim is because of her love affair. Not only did she lose her so-called lover, he ended up hating her. She also lost her childhood “innocence” in the town’s eyes. While this was wrong for both sides of the relationship, however, Mr. Proctor is a married adult. Mr. Proctor can be seen as an instigator in this situation, for example when Abigail and John Proctor were talking about their past affair, it is shown that he gave her false hope. Abigail asks “Do you tell me you’ve never looked up at my window?” and he responds “I may have looked up”. This shows that Abigail is victimized by John Procter, even if she doesn’t interpret it that way. Even though Abigail may have misinterpreted John Proctor’s actions, adultery is a major sin that can lead to death in the Puritan faith. Abigail craved the love that she didn’t get since her parents died, and her uncle didn’t show forth any. For this reason, she went to someone who would give it to her, which would be John Proctor. In addition to her love affair, Abigail is a victim of society. Throughout the play, Abigail was put to blame for all the witchcraft threats that happened. The situation was beyond control and one person should not be blamed for all the incidents. In addition to this, witchcraft threats were already occurring in this area, it just got out of hand. While Abigail wasn’t entirely innocent, she really doesn’t know any other way to act.
Lastly, Abigail is a victim because of the way she was upraised. With her parent’s lives being taken from Indians smashing their heads, this scarred her internally. For example, Abigail says, “I saw Indians smash my dear parents’ heads on the pillow next to mine, and I have seen some reddish work done at night, and I can make you wish you had never seen the sun go down”. Because most children should never think anything like this, it shows that this incident traumatized her at a young age. She was surrounded in this environment her whole life, so she didn’t know any other way. Abigail also lacks attention and care, who was brought up by her uncle, Reverend Parris. Because of this upbringing, she didn’t know any other way to act, even if defending herself would include lying and the death of others.
All in all, Abigail Williams is known as a victim in this play because of her love affair, society, and the way she was upraised. Even though many think that Abigail is an instigator, if the storyline is looked into deeper, it shows that she is a victim.
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