Martin Luther King Jr. once stated that “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” This means that if you want to judge a person, look to see how they act in times of trouble and hardship. Anyone can act calm when they’re doing nothing and everything’s all hunky dory. But only a good person can remain just as calm and positive in times of crisis and stress. “The Crucible” by Arthur Miller and After by Francine Prose can support that this quote is indeed true in all aspects.
With this in mind, “The Crucible” by Arthur Miller clearly reflects Martin Luther King Jr.’s ideas. The protagonist in this play, John Proctor, won’t give in to the courts demands because he doesn’t not want to tarnish the one and only name he’ll have by confessing to witchery. He stands up for what he believes in and ultimately who he is as a person. Reverend Hale, a minister brought to Salem to investigate the presence of the devil, had an attack of conscience near the end of the play and left the court. He realized that it had gotten out of hand and the trials and substantiary evidence was ridiculous. The theme of the story was the countless number of lives and reputations ruined because of guilty by association in a society where reputation was very important. Giles Corey, an innocent old man, refused to confess too and in turn, he was pressed to death by heavy stones. He stood up for what was rights and because he died out of the courts proceedings, it allowed him to pass on his land to his son rather than having it go up for auction. The author, Arthur Miller, used “The Crucible” as a symbol to represent McCarthyism and the Salem Witch Trials. The unrest in Salem is like the paranoia in America in the 1950’s with the fear of communism abroad.
Likewise, Francine Prose’s work of After also illustrates the point of Martin Luther King Jr.’s quote. In this novel, a...
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