Abigail Williams is far from being a sympathetic character, but there is plenty of evidence in the play to suggest that her position is an unenviable one and that she is a victim of the stifling society in which she lives.
After her parents' violent death, she was accorded the status of a poor relation in the home of the paranoid and tyrannical Reverend Parris, whose obsessive questioning of her at the beginning of act 1 shows how burdensome her position is. He reminds her of his charity in a way that must be very galling:
I have given you a home, child, I have put clothes upon your back - now give me an upright answer.
Finally, she has to ask him, with ill-concealed resentment:
Do you begrudge me my bed, uncle?
It is clear that life in Parris's house is miserable for Abigail, since she is a victim of his character defects as well as of the wider society that oppresses both of them. Moreover, her only escape was to accept the status of a servant in the Proctors' house.
She had no opportunity...
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