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The Crucible

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Why did the Salem settlement need a theocracy?

The author's notes say that the Puritans chose a theocracy to maintain unity in their settlement.  

Why had the settlers begun to turn toward individualism?

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How does Miller characterize Parris?

He is a man who symbolizes the particular quality of moral repression & paranoia that drive the trials. Miller immediately establishes Parris as a man whose main concern is his reputation & status in the community, rather than the well-being of his daughter.  

How does Parris feel about his parishioners?

Parris showed an obsession with damnation and hell in order to strike fear into his parishioners.  

Why is Thomas Putnam willing to speak of witchcraft?

Thomas Putnam demonstrates that his motivation involves his longstanding grudges against others; the witchcraft trials give Putnam an opportunity to exact revenge against others, and, as will later be shown, to profit economically from others' executions.  

How does Mrs. Putnam know what Ruth was doing in the woods?

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Why does Abigail "admit" that Tituba and Ruth were conjuring spirits?

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Why is Abigail afraid the others will confess what they were doing in the woods?

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How does Abigail treat the other girls? How does she treat her uncle?

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What are Abigail's feelings towards John Proctor?

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Why is she antagonistic toward Elizabeth Proctor?

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Why has she been asked to leave her home?

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Why does she tell John what happened to Betty?

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Why do Proctor and Rebecca speak out against Hale's coming?

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Why has Proctor set himself against Parris?

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How does Rebecca's departure affect those waiting at the bedside?

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Why does Abigail accuse Tituba?

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Why does Hale believe Abigail rather than Tituba?...