A Critical Lens of the Crucible

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Will Behan
Critical lens for The Crucible
Edmund Burke once stated “No passion so effectively robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear”. In other words fear of anything especially what a person does not know or understand can cripple one’s mind very effectively and with a large magnitude. A person would only need to recall the last time they were afraid of something they didn’t understand or when they didn’t know what to do to stop something from happening and reflect upon how their brain reacted to know that this is true. This can be proven true in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible and The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling.

In The Crucible by Arthur Miller the author uses conflict and characterization to show that fear cripples the mind. Fear crippling the mind can be shown through conflict. The conflict of the girls versus society is a clear representation of fear because the girls create fear throughout town and people just blindly followed their judgments without thinking rationally about what was going on. Another conflict is that reveals how fear effects the brain is Abigail versus John Proctor because Abigail is afraid of losing the love of John so she stops thinking rationally and claims that people in town are witches. The crippling of the mind because of fear can also be represented by characterization. The characters Abigail and Tituba shows how fear cripples the mind when they are first confronted about the dancing they did in the woods they were afraid of what was going to happen to them so they blamed other innocent people. The townspeople are crippled by fear because anyone who openly speaks out against the accusations is suspected of being a witch themselves.

In The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling the author uses setting and characterization to show how fear affects the human mind. Setting is used to show how fear affects the human mind when the setting changes. In The Prisoner of Azkaban from that series, when Harry...
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