July 17, 2024


Arts Fanatics

The Crucible – Hysteria and Panic

Dark witches chant their evil chant and dance around the fire cauldron help us o god hectate send your dogs of wrath to avenge us. This is the image of modern paganism or neopaganism. Unfortunately it is very incorrect as the do worship Hectate the Wiccans are bound not to hurt anyone at least in their modern form. Thus the creation of white magic (Wicca) and black magic (Witchcraft). For many years witches and other practitioners of religions other than Christianity were persecuted such and the Mormon movement and the prophet Joseph Smith. The fact is that “9 million people” we not persecuted in fact many Christian leaders protected them from the mobs.

In fact these numbers are propaganda and persecution against the Christian faith itself. The fact is that the hysteria and a more enhanced word for it “drama”. Even in High school people want drama, the National Inquirer is still one of the US best selling magazines despite its known cases slander that has reached the heights of the US legal system. This slander or controversy contributes to the bandwagon effect which everyone wants to be a part of. People throw out all logic with any type of controversy or drama. Even best selling author Dan brown author of the Da Vinci Code attributes to this fact, he regards it as one reason for the success of his books he states “Everyone loves a conspiracy”. There is something bound in human hearts that replaces logic with lies and changes fear into hysteria.

“It is difficult, however, to feel that the political complexities inherent in The Crucible have been approached by Mr. Miller with any comparable sensitivity. He has, admittedly, disclaimed intent of contemporary reference in the play, choosing to see in it only the tragedy of another society. But it would be fatuous of Mr. Miller to pretend that our present cultural climate had not always a place in the foreground of his mind. Surely then, he can see that the Salem witch-hunts and our own virulent varieties are parallel only in their effects, not in their causes.” (Richard Hayes “Hysteria and Ideology in The Crucible (1953)”) Author Miller searched for bits and pieces that support his view and his metaphor to McCarthyism. He admittedly changed Abigail age one of the key players in his novel as well as the antagonist. He combined many judges into one so he could control what the view court was, and their reactions and punishments. He ends his play as a tragedy when in fact many did survive in the actual Salem witch trails. In addition the families of the victims were compensated by monetary means or by land.

The fear of communism has led to what is known as ” McCarthyism, named after Joseph McCarthy, was a period of intense anticommunism, also known as the (second) Red Scare, which occurred in the United States from 1948 to about 1956 (or later), when the government of the United States actively persecuted the Communist Party USA, its leadership, and others suspected of being communists” (The Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia) When McCarthyism was first televised and Joesph McCarthy controversial tactics were exposed. This was the inspiration for the book “The Crucible by Arthur Miller” he used the Salem which trails as a metaphor for the McCarthyism that took place in the 1950’s.The novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953) addresses the general theme of McCarthyism also. Arthur miller uses drama as his canvas to paint a picture of propaganda and distortion. Arthur Miller is the Michel Moore of the 1950’s he doesn’t realize the efforts done to protect the civil liberties in our county. He looks at national security as buffoonery,as an attempt to undermine the communists and their party and freedom of speech. Arthur Miller oversimplifies things in his metaphor between the 1950’s and the Salem trials. One instance of this is that there were communists in the 1950’s but in Salem as far as we know their were know witches. One current event that relates to this is the US Patriot Act which many criticize President Bush by saying it violates civil rights but in fact it has saved us from multiple terrorist acts. Just as in the 1950’s the trials of communists helped us win the cold war and prevent a third world war. The fact of the matter is that hysteria is sometimes helpful because it focuses our attention on a real threat and helps us to prevent it.

Arthur Miller is a revolutionist in his own haughty eyes. He sees the world through a narrow tunnel and is interpreted to be open minded. His ideas,thoughts, and actions are why the US government was thought him to be conspiring against them. Now any person reading this article says what about free speech. Free speech is a wonder and a beauty of this great country we live in. But censorship does need to come into play when you can make bombs on the internet. You could read a book and now believe that you have to suicide such as the Heaven Gate Cult that used screen plays,sacred texts,and professional websites to convinced 39 people to take their own lives. Or the Oklahoma city bombing where the mad man found instructions for making homemade bombs on the internet or from research in public libraries. Arthur Miller is propagandist, he brings up great points but presents ideology and drama with little or no substance, evidence or constructive criticism. The world is safer without the propaganda of Arthur Miller. Without the “drama” controversy and lies. Terry Pratchett also known as diggers once said “The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.” We live in a world full of delusion it is hard to separate fact from fiction truth from lies. We must strive to define our ideas as that of our own creation not influenced by any outside intervention.