How does Arthur Miller create tension in the "Trial Scene" of "The Crucible"?

Topics: Salem witch trials, The Crucible, McCarthyism Pages: 4 (1253 words) Published: September 2, 2008
The Crucible was written by Arthur Miller who was born on 17th October 1915 in New York City. The Crucible is based on a small group of teen girls in 1692 Salem, Massachusetts caught in an innocent conjuring of love potions to catch young men who are forced to tell lies that Satan had invaded them and forced them to participate in the rites and are then forced to name those involved. Thrown into the mix are greedy preachers and other major landowners trying to steal others' land and one young woman Abigail infatuated with a married man John Proctor and was determined to get rid of his innocent wife Elizabeth. Arthur Miller wrote the events and the consequent trials where those who demanded their innocence were executed, those who would not name names were incarcerated and tortured, and those who admitted their guilt were immediately freed. In Act 3 of The Crucible the Trial scene is set in the Salem meeting house, this scene is so important because it is the most intense scene in the play because everything is revealed, and timing proves to be one of the most important factors. Proctor realizes that it is critical for Mary Warren to testify against Abigail before she loses her courage to do so. In addition, time is critical at this point in the play because individuals are being convicted continuously.

The Crucible is also based on McCarthyism this term describes the intense anti-communist suspicion in the United States in a period that lasted roughly from the late 1940s to the late 1950s. This period is also referred to as the Second Red Scare, and coincided with increased fears about communist influence on American institutions and spying by Soviet agents. Miller was also involved in the McCarthy Trials, he broke with Elia Kazan over his decision to give names of former members of the American Communist Party to the House of un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). Miller was himself blacklisted by Hollywood when he refused to testify in front of the HUAC....
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