Can you help me create a title for my essay about events that occur before Elizabeth Proctor's arrest in The Crucible?
The outcome of the play is still hanging in the balance, so to speak, before Elizabeth is arrested. The story could still go any number of ways and so the play remains somewhat undefined up to this point.
The themes that have arisen so far include adultery, dishonesty, individuality, and personal responsibility. Maybe personal responsibility would be the best route to take in writing about the first half of the play seeing that every character has taken a defined stance (except Elizabeth) as to which side he or she will stand on - the side of true moral integrity and conscience or the side of accusation and lack of accountability.
What about something along the lines of "Greed and Power: A Simmering Brew"? I'm not sure what you're focusing on in the first two acts, but Miller certainly uses those acts to show his audience that the "pure" town of Salem was rife with greed (on Parris and Putnam's part) and a quest for power (Abigail does not appreciate Elizabeth's being able to get rid of her; Parris doesn't like the disrespect that he feels from John; and the girls who participate in the accusations discover early on that they enjoy the attention and power they've acquired from accusing others of witchcraft). The "simmering" part of the title could apply to the suspense that Miller builds up in the first two acts.
Can you tell us what you're saying about these events? Do you mean just the events that happen at the Proctors' house right before the arrest, or are you talking about the events of the whole play to that point? The more we know about what your essay says, the better advice we can give.
Elizabeth realizes that John and Abigail are involved in an adulterous affair. Though Elizabeth is described by John as being cold, she is a warmly caring mother and a devoted wife. When Hale questions John and Elizabeth Proctor as to whether they are true Christians or not, and John forgets the Commandment of "Thou shall not commit adultery," Elizabeth steps up to assist him and, ironically, provides the missing Commandment. Abigail and Betty have been warned by Mary to tell the truth and just be punished for dancing instead of killed for being witches. Mary goes daily to the hearings. Abigail has told John that her testimonies accusing witches is all a fabrication. Elizabeth tries to persuade John to testify in court to what Abigail confided about the fabrications, but he resists doing so because, as Elizabeth senses, he has adulterous feelings for Abigail. The sequence ends when John declares that Elizabeth cannot be sentenced because she is pregnant. A possible title might be Deceptions and Lies Precede Elizabeth's Arrest; or possibly John Proctor's and Abigail's Infidelities Precede Elizabeth's Arrest.
I like interesting title or ones that have a play on words. What if you used something like Arrested Development, or the Crux of the Crucible, or the Lid-Covered Crucible? Something that says you are unique, interesting, and a great student to understand complicated titles.