Explore the roles of Tituba, the Putnams, Reverend Parris and Abigail in terms of how they trigger and fuel conflict in "Crucible".Support the commenting answering the question with...

Explore the roles of Tituba, the Putnams, Reverend Parris and Abigail in terms of how they trigger and fuel conflict in "Crucible".

Support the commenting answering the question with quotations.

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Reverend Parris is a weak man more concerned with his reputation than truth.  He has taken in the orphaned Abigail but shows little concern for her, contributing to her need to seek negative attention.  He shows his self-centeredness, telling her, "If you trafficked with spirits I must know it...my enemies...will ruin me with it".

Goody Putnam is "a twisted soul...haunted by dreams".  She gleefully gossips that the girls were engaged in witchcraft, and tells the Reverend, "it is surely a stroke of hell upon you!"  Thomas Putnam, "a man with many grievances...his vindictive nature... demonstrated long before the witchcraft began", is driven by greed.  He knows that if the accused are convicted, they will have to sell their land for next to nothing, and he plans to gain from the opportunity.

Tituba is a slave from Barbados whose superstitious ways are foreign to Boston Puritan society and misconstrued as being evil.  The Reverend has seen her dancing and says, "I saw Tituba waving her arms over the fire...screeching and gibberish coming from her mouth...swaying like a dumb beast over that fire".

Abigail is manipulative, starved for attention and love.  She "resentfully" asks Parris, "Do you begrudge my bed, uncle?", and entreats John Proctor to "pity" her, insisting, "you loved me...you love me yet!".  Her accusations bring her the power and influence she seeks (Act 1).