El Merengue

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The Crucible
Reputation vs Name

In order to take away their names, prisoners are given numbers that represent them. By doing this, the authorities remove the power in one’s name. Nelson Mandela’s situation was no different, as he was given the number “46664” during his time in prison. He would spend nearly twenty seven years in prison fighting for his name, in order to recover its power. His actions would, later on, represent what his name, “Nelson Mandela”, means. Fighting for a name is different than fighting for a reputation. 1A reputation is the opinion of a society or group towards a person, and fighting for it means that a person strives to be looked upon in a specific way, while not necessarily being that. A name is more personal and private as it is ones own, and fighting for it is like fighting for ones rights. In “The Crucible”, Arthur Miller sets one of the most important conflicts, not only in the book, but in real life too: Reputation vs Name. Some characters in this novel strive for their reputation, while others fight for their name. Reverend Parris’s and John Proctor’s aspirations highlight this conflict. To have a good reputation would satisfy both characters, but the difference between them is that one obsesses on having a good reputation, while the other makes sure this is not his main priority, as his name is more important. Fighting to “have a name”, and not a reputation, should be ones main aspiration, as it usually leads to a satisfying reputation.

Reverend Parris never found out how to get himself a good reputation. His main goal was to find himself in a position where no harm can be said about him, and for people to only know him for the good person he thinks himself to be. But his selfishness to become powerful, which leads to his carelessness of others and especially his daughter, is the reason behind his failures to reach his goals. In the beginning of the novel, Parris’s daughter, Betty, lay still in her bed, due to a coma. A...
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