How does Miller use characterization in the development of Proctor in The Crucible?

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

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I think that Miller makes the drama about Proctor.  It is evident that he wishes to use the play as a type of morality drama that is explored through the eyes and actions of Proctor.  Miller develops this characterization throughout the play, almost as if it provides a cadence for the growth and emergence of the character of Proctor.  Miller is able to develop Proctor's character as one who wishes to not become involved with what is happening to one that has little choice to not only involve themselves, but stand up for the very same element that others abandon.  Miller develops Proctor's character as one who must move away from isolationism and silent.  As the play progresses, Miller's characterization of Proctor in this light is developed through Proctor becoming involved to save Elizabeth, and then to speak out against the nature of injustice that had enveloped the town.  It is this development that Miller enhances which helps to drive the play.  The merging of Proctor's characterization and the development of the play's themes enable the morality element of the drama to be fully seen by all.

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