John Proctor

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Honorable...Ashamed...Respected...All of these words can be used to describe John Proctor. In Arthur Miller’s The Crucible John Proctor, one of the main characters, is faced with a variety of challenges. The most extreme test that he must face is to admit to a crime that ultimately leads to his death. At one time he was looked up to in the town of Salem, however when a situation arises, John Proctor must fight his conscience. He is motivated and tested to tell the truth even though it ruined his good reputation and contributed largely to the theme of an individuals reputation throughout the play. This man truly created a model for us to follow. In this play based on seventeenth century witch­hunts, John Proctor is motivated by anger to speak out against Reverend Parris even though no one else does. Proctor dislikes and distrusts Reverend Parris. This can be seen when Proctor says, “[there is] no light of god in that man” and “I will not conceal it”(30). He is willing to admit that he does not like Parris and feels that he, “can not speak one minute without speaking of hell”(30), and therefore does not have divine backing. Proctor knows that Parris is more concerned about his own pride rather than looking out for the welfare of Salem. This is ironic because Parris was said to be a man of God and yet, he speaks of hell and his primary concern is not the church. John Proctor feels that he has too much power and therefore is compelled to protect that is power at all costs. He is so frustrated with a church and the mob mentality in the town of Salem, Proctor feels obliged to say, “I say­I say­God is dead”(119). In a community that is known for its spiritual zeal, this shows how much of an impact the hysteria had made in the town of Salem. Proctor felt that all the people that had previously claimed’ “to be members of the church”(93), including Reverend Parris are not living up to their spiritual reputation. This bothers Proctor because he strives to be true to who he...
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