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The Crucible by Arthur Miller and the Novel Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

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In the historical drama The Crucible by Arthur Miller and the novel Siddhartha by Herman Hesse, there are two main characters that act as alienated youths who rejected their cultural upbringings. These characters, Abigail and Siddhartha, greatly affected the ones around them and changed many lives: Abigail, by lying and manipulating, caused many people grief and ended many lives. Siddhartha, by being so independent and not committing to anything, brought trouble and hurt to anyone close to him.

In The Crucible, Abigail is a troubled young lady who wants nothing but attention and to be accepted, in the town in which Abigail lives in, the community builds most of their laws and decisions based on the ten commandments of the Christian bible. The story is centered on Abigail going against the beliefs of her community and church by committing lechery, lying and manipulating. John Proctor, a local farmer and Abigail's former employer, and Abigail had an improper relationship; all the while, John was married to Elizabeth Proctor. "You loved me, John Proctor, and whatever sin it is, you love me yet!" said by Abigail (p 177). After the affair with Abigail, Proctor repented of the immoral act, accepting what he did was wrong, and no longer wanted anything to do with Abigail. Proctor's resolve is exposed when he says, "I will cut off my hand before I'll ever reach for you again." (p 177). Abigail, still being attracted to John, went to unthinkable lengths in order to regain what she experienced for a short time with him. Abigail, with the assistance of other girls in the community, accused many members of the town of witchcraft. The laws of the community required the punishment for witchery to be death by hanging unless the accused confessed their sins in which they were to leave the town never to return. Many community members charged made false confessions in order to save their lives; yet others, having too much pride, chose to die rather than lie. Among the accused was Elizabeth Proctor. Abigail set a trap accusing Elizabeth of witchcraft built on accusations and lies in order to have John all to herself. Her plan backfires and ultimately takes John's life in the end. Abigail lost the very thing she was trying to win. Abigail's deception caused much controversy within the community and brought much grief to the friends and family of the ones accused of witchery. Abigail ended many lives and tested many people's faith in the church. "God is dead!" (p 226).



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