Student Essay on Arthur Miller's Intentions

Arthur Miller's Intentions by Arthur Miller

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Arthur Miller's The Crucible was successful in fulfilling his intentions for the piece of writing. The reason why Miller wanted to write The Crucible was so that he could share his point of view on the world and on Communism. He wanted to show how many people were accusing each other of being a Communist. However, he did not write about Communism because he knew that it would not be published. So, he found a different event that was very popular and also had many elements of accusation, which turned out to be Salem Witch Trials. In Miller's "Why I wrote The Crucible," he says that "Western Europe also seemed ready to become Red- especially Italy, where the Communist Party was the largest outside Russia, and was growing" (1). Communism was growing worldwide and people were afraid of the ideology reaching their homeland. Miller successfully shows the audience that the Salem Witch Trials and the accusations were similar to the accusations of people being Communists. In the article, Miller writes, "Spectral evidence, so aptly named, meant that if I swore that you had sent out your `family spirit' to choke, tickle, poison me or my cattle, or to control thoughts and actions, I could get you hanged unless you confessed to having had contact with the Devil" (2). Accusations were all that were needed for someone to hang. Not much evidence was needed. After one is accused of witchcraft, it is very hard to defend one self. In the play, Rev. Parris tells Mary Warren to pretend to faint because he believes she is a witch if she cannot. "Then see no spirits now, and prove to us that you can faint by your own will, as you claim" (107). This was all that Rev. Parris needed to prove to the court that she is a witch. The fact that Mary couldn't faint doomed her. Arthur Miller does a great job of using his original idea of Communism and the accusations and turning it and relating it to the Salem Witch Trials with The Crucible.