16 December 2011
Reputation within Society
Everywhere you go; people are always trying to uphold their reputation. They will make others lives worse or even in jeopardy just to make sure people don’t look at them differently. To make sure their reputation isn’t compromised. In the play The Crucible, Arthur miller expresses how important ones reputation is in a small community. He shows how they will defend their reputations because it is what keeps their social status in place. John Proctor and Reverend Hale are characters who make an attempt to maintain their reputations in their time of crisis.
John Proctor, who is the main character in the play, has the biggest struggle with his reputation. At the beginning of the play, he isn’t even concerned with his reputation, and thinks that it doesn’t bother him how people think of him. He takes pride in his independence, and until this time of crisis, doesn’t realize how much he bases what he does upon what people will think of him. “Proctor is shocked to realize how much he relies on the good opinion of others, for he has always prided himself on his independence.” (Jimerson, 67) Jimerson is saying that it took this crisis to show himself that what he had taken pride in is something he doesn’t even have much of. “Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name?”40 Proctor knows that his name represents his independence and individuality, and that since he has built himself upon lies for better judgment from people, he doesn’t have independence. Without his independence, his name is meaningless. Therefore as an attempt to make things right and hope to save his reputation, he comes clean about his affair.
Not only does Proctor worry about his reputation of independence, but also his reputation as a good, honest husband. This is a...