How Do You Respind to Millers Presentation of Abigail in the Crucible?

Topics: The Crucible, Salem witch trials, Elizabeth Proctor Pages: 3 (1277 words) Published: May 17, 2012
Abigail is the main catalyst of Millers play The Crucible. She is presented by Milller in a powerful, "strikingly beautiful girl" yet malicious with an "endless capacity for dissembling" which is stated in Act 1 when she is first introduced to the play. This portrays and gives the reader an indication immediately, that Abigail has an everchanging personality and can manipulate people in such a way that they "fall apart". As the play progresses this is brought to light, especially with characters such as John Proctor and Danforth. Through Act 1, Abigail changes her character a number of times. We, as readers, never get to know her true character. In the beginning of the act she is almost portrayed as innocent, presented with "worry", "apprehension" and "propriety", shown in her stage directions such as "quavering as she sits". From this moment in time, the audience are unsure whether she is genuinely caring for her niece Betty or if she is diguising her true self with a selfless cover up. We learn from her dispute with Parris that she had been found dancing in the woods with Tituba, and the other girls practicing "witchcraft" which at the time would have been considered an absurd, yet serious matter as Salem was a strict puritan society, under a theocratic system, where the laws of the town were built around religion and God. This meant that many believed in the supernatural "witches" and especially "the devil". If anyone was to break the laws of the theocratic system, they were considered to not only be going against the laws of society but also against God and therefore would be condemned. Abigail confesses that she "did dance-and I'll be whipped if I must be" this indicates to the audience that she is a strong character as for a girl to take this type of punishment in society at the time, would have been a great deal especially taking into consideration her age. She also deomstrates guilt as she hangs her head in shame to Parris about "dancing". This is an...
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