30 September 2012
A Hero in Salem
“Peace demands the most heroic labor and the most difficult sacrifice. It demands greater heroism than war. It demands greater fidelity to the truth and a much more perfect purity of conscience,” by Thomas Merton. Merton did not just mean to put words down on a piece of paper; it has meaning to everyday people and everyday life. A hero is not always a person in a cape, but also a man who saves a kitten from a tree or stands up for someone who is too afraid to do it themselves. In the play The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, the small town of Salem experienced a certain turn of events to their quiet area known as the Salem witch trials. Now, a hero can come in any size, shape, or form, but this hero came in the form of a man named John Proctor.
A hero is not always flawless, I fact most people in general have done something wrong, but it is recognizing the error that makes someone heroic. John Proctor recognizes his error when he encounters his accomplice Abigail Williams when she forces herself on him. “Abby I think softly of you from time to time. But I will cut off my hand before I’ll reach for you again. Wipe it out of mind, we never touched Abby” (Miller 839). Proctor has made it clear that he knows he has made a mistake by having an affair with Abigail. He admits that he still does think about her every so often, but regrets doing it. It shows a sign of weakness in our hero, but also a sign of bravery for admitting he made a mistake. Also, a hero can be marked by knowing that
confronting what they have done could mean death or a form of punishment for them. “Good. Then her saintliness is done with. We will slide together into our pit; you will tell the court what you know,” (862). Their “pit” is a metaphor for fate, and by saying that they will be sliding into their pit, they know that going against Abigail in the court is a sacrifice to their life. John Proctor is...
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