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The Crucible - John Proctor Charactor Analysis

Essay by   •  September 25, 2011  •  Case Study  •  810 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,622 Views

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In the Crucible, John Proctor plays a dynamic role. Proctor is a good man, he is honest, and he always goes right to the point. As the play progresses, Proctor's personality begins to change as Abigail returns to his life once again bringing trouble, and will make Proctor tell the truth about the things that he wanted kept private to keep his respected reputation within the town. The changes Proctor goes through will turn him from the uncertain, troubled, and guilt struck man to a serene, moral, and spiritual person.

Throughout the play, Proctor is illustrated as the dynamic character since he changes from a guilt struck man to a spiritual man of society. After Proctor's affair with Abigail, the young house maid, he was a man struck with guilt and would not tell his wife, Elizabeth, of what he had done. That was just one of the secrets that Proctor kept in his back pocket until later into the play. The other secret that he has is that he is deeply in love with Abigail, but will not tell anyone because he will lose his respected reputation in the community. When Proctor and Abigail encounter each other in the town, Proctor instructs her that she should "put it out of mind" (22). Proctor is conveying that Abigail should forget about Proctor because he is trying to tell her that time of his life is over. That is actually a lie, because Proctor later says that he does "think of [her] softly from time to time" (23). Proctor changes from this encounter because he partially confesses to still being in love with her, but still doesn't want to express everything that he wants to say.

Further into the play, Proctor faces another change to his personally. When Hale comes to visit the Proctor's home because Elizabeth had been mentioned in court, Hale points out that Proctor had not been to church regularly. That is another secret that Proctor holds inside of him, the fact that he doesn't visit church often or even at all. Proctor then confesses that he does not go to church often because of how Parris had been "[preaching] nothin' but golden candlesticks until he had them" and that hurt Proctor's prayer, so he didn't go (65). That is another example of how guilt of Proctor's is just covered up by a lie to protect him from the truth. Once Elizabeth is taken away to jail and Proctor arrives at the court to testify that Elizabeth is innocent, Proctor is pressured to tell the truth that he had an affair with Abigail and she just wants Elizabeth killed so she can have Proctor for herself. He finally tells the truth to the court and that was the first time he confessed to his guilt which makes him a changed man inside with one less fear to deal with. Sadly, his plan to overthrow the court doesn't work and he is put in jail for lying to the court.

After months of jail time, Proctor is released to talk with Elizabeth about his choice to either

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