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COMMON MODULE QUOTES (THE CRUCIBLE - ARTHUR MILLER)
Quotes with analysis for the common module "Texts and Human Experiences" (sorted by theme)
Terms in this set (10)
Analysis: This line, spoken by John Proctor, highlights the extent of the manipulation which has driven residents of Salem to question themselves. He believes that the trustworthiness of the accusations depend on the trustworthiness of the accuser. The power and authority has now been subverted, as children are now in control and adults are now powerless.
Why do you never wonder if Parris be innocent, or Abigail? Is the accuser always holy now? Were they born this morning as clean as God's fingers? I'll tell you what's walking Salem - vengeance is walking Salem. We are what we always were in Salem, but now the crazy little children are jangling the keys to the kingdom and common vengeance writes the law" [FEAR/HYSTERIA, POWER/AUTHORITY - JOHN PROCTOR]
Analysis: This phrase discusses Proctor's epiphany; he realises that he will lose his good name once his affair of Abigail comes to light, however he knows he will finally be able to forgive himself for his crimes
" Now Heaven and Hell grapple our backs, and all our old pretence is ripped away - make your peace!... Peace. It is a providence, and no great change; we are only what we always were, but naked now. Aye, naked! And the wind, God's icy wind, will blow" [REPUTATION/PRIDE - JOHN PROCTOR]
Analysis: This displays that John Proctor would prefer to die with dignity rather than live with a poor reputation. He would prefer to die than to succumb to the madness and hysteria of Salem
"has a shred of goodness within himself. Not enough to wave a banner with, but white enough to keep it from such dogs". [REPUTATION/PRIDE - JOHN PROCTOR]
Analysis: Hale demonstrates perfectly the mindset of the characters affected by the hysteria and fear. In his case, it's more hysteria than fear - he doesn't particularly fear that he may be accused as a witch, but he has been persuaded by the "frightful proofs" he's seen and this has blinded him to any other possible reasons that the witchcraft accusations might be being made.
"There is a misty plot afoot so subtle we should be criminal to cling to old respects and ancient friendships. I have seen too many frightful proofs in court - the Devil is alive in Salem, and we dare not quail to follow wherever the accusing finger points!" [FEAR/HYSTERIA - REVEREND HALE]
Analysis: This phrase demonstrates Abigail's concern about her reputation and "name" - as Salem is a theocratic society (where women are already given no power), she would face severe consequences if information emerged that she slept with a married man (John Proctor).
"My name is good in the village! I will not have it said my name is soiled! Goody Proctor is a gossiping liar!" [REPUTATION/PRIDE - ABIGAIL]
Analysis: Proctor utters these lines at the end of the play, in Act IV, when he is wrestling with his conscience over whether to confess to witchcraft and thereby save himself from the gallows. More important, it illustrates his obsession with his good name. Reputation is tremendously important in Salem, where public and private morality are one and the same. Now, however, he has come to a true understanding of what a good reputation means and what course of action it necessitates—namely, that he tell the truth, not lie to save himself. "I have given you my soul; leave me my name!" he rages; this defense of his name enables him to muster the courage to die, heroically, with his goodness intact.
"I have given you my soul; leave me my name"
[REPUTATION/PRIDE - JOHN PROCTOR]
Analysis: This quote suggests that the hysteria is to such an extent that the more level-headed citizens and previous non-believers are starting to become affected. Giles Corey (one of the calmer Salem residents) has begun to believe the lies, after his wife was accused of witchcraft after he explained her strange behaviour to Reverend Hale
"I never had no wife that be so taken with books, and I thought to find the cause of it, d'y'see, but it were no witch I blamed her for. He is openly weeping. I have broke charity with the woman, I have broke charity with her." [FEAR/HYSTERIA - GILES COREY]
Analysis: This quote, spoken by Ann Putnam, is used to demonstrate that all it not what it seems in Salem. There are complex plots which are hidden beneath the surface.
"There are wheels within wheels in the village, and fires within fires" [TRUTH AND DECEPTION - ANN PUTNAM]
Analysis: In this quote, a reference is made to a crucible, an object used to separate different metals at high temperatures. A parallel can be made that, in the text, the trials not only separate the good from the bad but also the inner nature of people from their outer personas. This can be linked to the above quote, as the inner nature of humanity is revealed, and motivations such as greed become prominent reasons for accusation.
"We burn a hot fire here. It melts down all concealment" [TRUTH AND DECEPTION - UNKNOWN]
Analysis: In this quote, Abigail attempts to deceive the people in the court room as she says that she was doing God's work, when in reality she was doing the devil's work. She attempts to justify her actions, and deflect the suspicion onto others who have already been accused. Through this statement, she also gives herself slightly more power, by saying that she has no other motivation than to work for the goodness of God, in a society that is completely theocratic.
10 → "Oh Mary, this is a black art to change your shape. No I cannot, I cannot stop my mouth; this is God's work I do" [TRUTH AND DECEPTION - ABIGAIL]
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