Is John Proctor's death a fair result for his actions before and throughout the play?I need evidence from the book to support my answers.

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lsumner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I believe John Proctor was a good man who gave in to a moment of weakness:

The central figure in the play, Proctor is an ordinary man, a blunt farmer who speaks his mind and is often ruled by his passions. It is revealed early in the play that he has had an adulterous affair with Abigail, who worked as his servant. Yet he clearly shows remorse for his act and is attempting to right his error; he is conciliatory with his wife, Elizabeth, and disdainful of Abigail's sexual advances.

John Proctor's wife Elizabeth had been sick. Men have needs, and John Proctor is an ordinary man with strengths and weaknesses. I do not believe that committing adultery should be punished by death. 

The hanging scenes are preposterous. Hysterical girls are believed over good people like John and Elizabeth Proctor. Sure John made a mistake with Abigail, but he should not be condemned to death for his mistake. He is being punished as it is every time he looks into his wife's hurt face. John Proctor is truly sorry for his mistake he made with Abigail. He suffers every time he thinks about how he hurt his wife. He should not die because he made a mistake with Abigail. 

All that John Proctor has is his good name. He confesses his adultery to try and stop the hangings. Condemned to death himself, he stands up for his name and cries out:

 "Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul, leave me my name!"

Clearly, John Proctor is in agony. He dies because he will not sign his name admitting to dealings in witchcraft. His death was unnecessary. He committed no crime of witchcraft. He is innocent of witchcraft. The court condemns him to death. John Proctor hangs.