Mccarthyism and the Crucible

Topics: Salem witch trials, The Crucible, McCarthyism Pages: 6 (2392 words) Published: October 17, 2010
Throughout Joseph McCarthy’s accusations of communism there was talk of some of his victims possibly being innocent. One of these victims that was allegedly innocent was Arthur Miller. Miller, because he was wronged by the law, decided to write a similar story to the events of the McCarthy trials in order to make McCarthy’s ideals seem flawed. Miller believed that if he could write a story to prove the accusations incorrect he would be able to re-establish his respectable reputation. This story is known as “The Crucible”, a story about the Salem Witch Trials and how the townspeople were falsely accused of witchcraft, but couldn’t do anything to plead there innocence. Miller managed to show through “The Crucible”, how ridiculous McCarthy’s accusations were and how it was very unfair that many people’s lives were ruined because of this man. Throughout the play “The Crucible”, Arthur Miller tried to show many similarities between both of the trials and they way they were conducted. Miller showed similarities such as inconsistent reasons for accusing people and portrayed himself as the main character known as John Proctor who was a good citizen and only got involved in the whole fiasco to try and fight for justice.

Arthur Miller, born in 1915, grew up in New York to a Jewish family. His mother was a woman’s clothing manufacturer who lost everything due to the poor economy of the 1930’s. Miller knew that with his family’s lack of money it would not be possible for them to afford for him to go to college. After high school, Miller worked in a warehouse to earn enough money to attend the University of Michigan where he began to write plays. “The Man Who Had All the Luck”, was his first play to make it to broadway in 1944 and was a complete failure closing only after four showings leaving Miller horribly depressed. This setback caused Miller to consider giving up on writing all together, however he knew he would eventually regret this decision and decided to give himself on more chance at success. He knew that he could write better and immediately went back to work. (summary)

After three years of practicing and improving on his writing techniques, Arthur Miller returned to Broadway with high hopes. In 1947, “All My Sons” was declared the best play of the year and sent Miller and theatrical stardom. Although his new play was a huge success, many critics still questioned his writing talent by saying that he was simply a one hit wonder. That same year Miller secured his reputation as one of the nation’s foremost playwrights after releasing “Death of a Salesman”, which managed to win a Tony Award, a Pulitzer Prize and is still being revived today in film and on television. After “Death of a Salesman”, Miller continued to produce many successful plays, however none of his plays are as memorable as “The Crucible”, and not just because of the well-written story. He had no idea that he would eventually be targeted for communism by a power hungry senator. (gradesaver)

Joseph McCarthy was born in 1908 on a farm in Wisconsin to a devout Christian family. At the age of fourteen, McCarthy left school in order to work as a chicken farmer before eventually managing a grocery store in a nearby town. In 1928, he returned to high school and graduated in only one year. He eventually went to college at Marquette University in Milwaukee where he studied to be a lawyer and graduated in 1935. after college, he became a rather unsuccessful lawyer and had to balance out his income by playing games of poker. After failing to join the Democratic Party, he switched over to the Republicans and won an election over Edgar Werner to be elected judge of the tenth judicial circuit of Wisconsin in 1939. while running against Werner, he shocked many by running a mudslinging campaign to make his opponent look unfit for the job. By the way he campaigned against Werner in this election showed the entire country that he would go to any lengths to prove his point...
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