How does what Arthur Miller says about the Puritans' outlook toward the "virgin forest" impact the first act of The Crucible?

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Arthur Miller writes that the Puritans viewed the wilderness as the "Devil's last preserve" and believed that the "virgin forest" was the last place on earth that was not "paying homage to God." To the Puritans, the forest was a very threatening place, where Indians marauded and carried out savage acts, such as murdering innocent, God-fearing white men. The threatening nature of the forest and the overwhelming fear of brutal Indians influence Reverend Parris's overreaction to catching the girls dancing in the forest. He immediately assumes that the girls are engaged in supernatural activities and fears that evil spirits have harmed his daughter. A severe punishment awaits the girls for dancing in the dangerous, evil forest, and they are aware of the repercussions. Young girls like Betty Parris and Ruth Putnam fear the consequences of their actions and feign illness while Abigail and the others girls begin to accuse innocent citizens of witchcraft to distract from their own actions. Overall, the Puritan's negative views of the "virgin forest" influence Reverend Parris to overreact and motivate the girls to feign illness and accuse innocent citizens of being involved in witchcraft to avoid being punished for dancing in the forest.

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Miller says that

the virgin forest was the Devil's last preserve, his home base and the citadel of his final stand.

This is perhaps one of the most significant narrative details that puts this story in motion. The Puritans believed that the forest contained the Indians who had every intention of harming them. In fact, Abigail later claims that her own parents were scalped right in front of her. These Indians did indeed hurt many Puritans, but the Puritans were a rare breed whose religious snobbery probably caused many of their own problems.

This impacts the first act because the event that sets the story in motion occurs before the first act, but is regularly referred to AND it occurs in this terrible forest. The girls' act of naked dancing and trying to conjure spirits occurs and is reported about during this first act and it is what apparently paralyzes Betty Parris. If it weren't for the Devil at work in the forest, these pure Puritan young ladies wouldn't have sinned. (That's at least how Puritans would view it.)

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