How did sabotage and self-interest lead to the Salem hangings?

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"The Crucible" is a play written by Arthur Miller. It was published and first performed on stage in 1953. The play is a dramatized account of the Salem Witch Trials in the Massachusetts Bay Colony during the 1600s.

The play is critical of the patriarchal and extremely...

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"The Crucible" is a play written by Arthur Miller. It was published and first performed on stage in 1953. The play is a dramatized account of the Salem Witch Trials in the Massachusetts Bay Colony during the 1600s.

The play is critical of the patriarchal and extremely religious societies of colonial America. The story recounts how girls and young adult women were persecuted for witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts. The practice of witchcraft at the time was punishable by death.

The narrative of "The Crucible" is also a commentary on self-interest, vengeance and the dangers of gossip. When one of the supposed witches is called to the stand during the trials, the other accused girls pretend to faint and have convulsions. At the time, the religious authorities believed that such symptoms were caused by demonic spirits summoned from witchcraft practices.

Although young, the girls show a high level of deceptive practices in order to spare themselves from execution. The main plot in "The Crucible" centers on the persecution of Elizabeth Proctor, one of the women accused of witchcraft. Her accuser is a former employee at her household, Abigail, whom Elizabeth had fired because of Abigail's affair with Elizabeth's husband, John.

Abigail's character represents selfishness and vengeance. It is Abigail's lies that lead to Elizabeth's persecution. Although Elizabeth is spared in the end, her husband is hanged by the colonial court.

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