Arthur Miller is a great author that uses many forms of syntax, figurative language, and diction to enhance his writing throughout The Crucible. Miller uses figurative language throughout The Crucible, to put emphasis on certain ideas and things. Miller also uses diction in The Crucible to show that the story is taking place in the past and to give the story a more biblical feel to it. One other thing that Arthur Miller does really well is his use of syntax. He uses syntax throughout The Crucible to show the intelligence levels of different characters. Miller uses these three different things in combination throughout The Crucible to enhance the story and to tell the story of the witch craft trials in an insightful way.
Miller uses diction, all through The Crucible, to show that the story being told is taking place in the past and to make the story have a biblical effect to it. In Act three, John Proctor begs for his name to not be blotted out and says, “Tell them I confessed myself; say proctor broke his knees and wept like a woman”. Through, using the word woman instead of baby, which most of people would use in this time period, he uses the word woman, which gives the reader a feeling of being in the past, because in that time woman were looked upon as second class citizens. When Proctor and Abigail speak with each other in Act one, Abigail explains to Proctor that Elizabeth is talking bad about her and that she is ruining her name in the community. She explains this to him by saying, “She is blackening my name in the village”.
From, the diction that Miller uses by using the word blackening, it puts an old feeling to the story and it also puts a biblical feel to the story, which enhances the story by making you feel like you are in the 1690’s. Another great example of Miller using diction to make the story feel old and biblical is in Act two when, Elizabeth explains to Proctor that it is not her that judges him, but he judges himself. She says to him, “The magistrate that sits in your heart that judges you”. By, using these words to simply say “I’m not judging you; you’re judging yourself” Miller makes it feel as if The Crucible was written in the 1690’s when, in actuality it was written in the 1950’s.
Arthur Miller also uses Figurative language in The Crucible very well, to put emphasis on things and make them seem more important. In Act two of The Crucible Proctor explains to Elizabeth that she is being cold hearted and having no mercy by saying: “oh, Elizabeth, your justice would freeze beer”. Beer has a very low freezing point; by using this figurative language Miller puts emphasis on how cold hearted Elizabeth is being. In Act two of The Crucible Francis Nurse defends his wife against her accusation of witchcraft by saying, “My wife is the very brick and mortar of the church.” This use of figurative language by Miller puts great emphasis on how important his wife is to the church.
Not only is she important to the church, but this quote emphasizes her importance, by telling the reader that the church would be nothing without her. Another great use of figurative language used by Miller is in Act two when Proctor says: “I will curse her hotter than the oldest cinder”. This is said when, Proctor, discovers that Abigail is accusing his wife of witch craft. By, Miller using figurative language he puts a great emphasis on something that simply means “go to hell”. By, Miller putting emphasis on his writing he makes it much more entertaining and dramatic, to read The Crucible.
Throughout The Crucible Miller uses syntax to show the education levels of different characters. The character Tituba, a slave from Barbados, says, “He say Mr. Parris must be kill! Mr. Parris no goodly man, Mr. Parris, mean man and no gentle man.” She says this in Act one, when explaining how she was possessed, by the devil. Miller uses the word order of Tituba to show that she is not very well educated. On the other hand, he uses the word order of what Danforth, in Act three says, “I am amazed to find you in such uproar. I have only good report of your character.” to show that Danforth is educated.
Arthur Miller’s, peculiar, use of diction gives the readers the feeling of the story taking place in the 1690’s. He also uses figurative language to exaggerate and put emphasis on things. One other thing that Miller does really well is use syntax to show how some characters are educated more than others. Arthur Miller uses these three things to tell the story of The Crucible in an exciting and eventful way. Because, he does this he makes a story that could be as boring as watching paint dry, and turns it into a very intriguing story.
Courtney from Study Moose
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