In Act 4 of Arthur Miller's The Crucible, what evidence does Parris use to argue that people are tired of the witchcraft trials?

Expert Answers
noahvox2 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Arthur Miller's The Crucible was composed in the post-World War II America in which our country was gripped by the so-called "Red Scare." In the fourth act of the play, which is set in the Salem jail, Reverend Samuel Parris, who has recently had all his money stolen from him, indicates to Danforth and Hathorne that the town of Andover had also been faced with the problem of witchcraft, but that the people of Andover "have thrown out the court" and that they "will have no part of witchcraft." This seems to indicate that the people of Andover refused to succumb to the same superstitions that captivated the minds of those in Salem.

Furthermore, Parris argues that the sins of Rebecca Nurse and John Proctor were not particularly serious in comparison with the sins of others in Salem. Parris claims that when John Proctor was excommunicated from the church "there were hardly thirty people come to hear it. That speak a discontent, I think".

Given this evidence, Parris urges Danforth to postpone the executions. Danforth, however, remains as committed as ever to his course of action.

Read the study guide:
The Crucible

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question