Where would the conversation between Abigail and John be placed in a timeline of The Crucible?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that much of the answer is going to depend on what other elements in the timeline have been established.  On one hand, I think that an event that has to precede this would be the initial discussion between the girls as to how their stories must be aligned and how all of them must not show weaken in their resolve of spreading the deception that Abigail hatches.  This precedes Proctor entering and speaking with Abigail for the first time.  It is through this discussion that we see there was a relationship between both of them at one point and how she still holds feelings for him.  I think that an event that succeeds it would be the entrance of Giles Corey and Rebecca Nurse as well as the commotion downstairs, indicating the acceptance of witchcraft as the causes of the girls' supposed afflictions.  The conversation between Abigail and John must be placed in a context where it is pitted between the rather loud and intense dialogues between the girls and other members of the community.  Miller deliberately places this in between both to bring out the idea that some of the most important discourses are the ones that don't take place in public, but rather in hushed tones and in private settings.


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