How do the character traits of Danforth affect his relationship with other characters in The Crucible, including John Proctor, Abigail Williams, Reverend Hale, and Reverend Parris?
Danforth's rigidity and his obvious desire to retain his authority regardless of any injustice or the suffering of others certainly negatively affects his relationships with John Proctor and Reverend Hale. He seems determined to believe the girls in court, regardless of how outlandish their accusations become or the superior reputations of the people they accuse. This leads to John Proctor's total loss of respect for Danforth and Hale's as well. Hale "quits" the court as a result of his apparent feeling that both the court and Danforth are corrupt.
Danforth's credulity means that Abigail can manipulate him more easily. He is inclined to believe the girls because, as he says, it is the opinion of the government of the colony that the "voice of Heaven is speaking through [them]." His concurrence with this estimation increases his own power and authority. When Proctor accuses Abigail, Danforth seems all too willing to believe Proctor is lying after his wife says that he was not unfaithful to her and their marriage despite...
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