John Proctor: A Dynamic Character
A dynamic character is defined as someone who grows and changes. One of the few dynamic characters in the play, The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, is John Proctor. This play was written in the 1950s however it is based on the Salem Witch Trials which took place in 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts. Proctor has a significant role in the play as he knows the truth behind the girls accusations but his morals and love of God is tested when its time to speak up. Proctor goes through a spiritual awakening in an attempt to find his goodness.
The society in which John Proctor and his wife Elizabeth live in is a Puritan community. All of the citizens strive to be upstanding Christians and follow the Bible literally. The town's government is a theocracy making the Holy Bible law. On the surface Proctor portrays a good Christian man. "Proctor, respected and even feared in Salem has come to regard himself as a kind of fraud." (21). The reader is quickly informed that Proctor has had an affair with a teenage girl named Abigail Williams, while his wife was ill. Although Proctor and his wife knew of the sin they hid it from the rest of the Puritan Community in fear of being judged, criticized and ruining the Proctor name.
In the beginning Proctor feels he has cleared his sin but Elizabeth feels differently. "You forget nothin' and forgive nothin'. Learn charity, woman. I have gone tiptoe in this house all seven month since she is gone. I have not moved from there to there without I think to please you, and still an everlasting funeral marches round in your heart!" (54-55). Not long after Proctor attempts to be cleansed of his sins, Abigail and a group of girls got into trouble. To try to pass the blame off, they begin accusing people of witchcraft. Abigail accuses Goody Proctor of working for the devil simply because with Elizabeth out of the way, she can marry Proctor. When this occurs Proctor knows he must tell the court that the...
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