Interesting characters Essay
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Miller also uses many dramatic devices to attain emotional intensity at the beginning of Act Two. The use of short sentences and many pauses allow the audience to speculate about the state of John and Elizabeth’s relationship and wonder why it has turned out this way. Two examples of short lines are ‘I am’ and ‘aye’ an example of the pauses is ‘he eats, she watches’. The pauses and short lines allow the lines to have time to sink in therefore potentially creating more emotion, but also making us sad at their separation.
The use of Elizabeth and John having an argument creates tension and the way Elizabeth ‘hurt and very coldly’ says ‘good then let you think on it’ before ‘she stands and starts to walk out of the room’. It is clear from the beginning of the scene these characters are withholding information about the nature of their separation, this causes the audience to come to some upsetting and hasty conclusions. Miller’s use of dramatic devices in Act Two helps the play achieve its emotional intensity.
The play has a few themes throughout which repeat themselves. Firstly power is a large theme of the play constantly being bought up. In fact the one thing all the characters have in common is there lust for power, Reverend Parris uses the witch trials to gain power and respect. Abigail and her allies work for the court in order to get power, this is shown when Elizabeth says ‘she raises up her chin like the daughter of a prince and says to me I must go to Salem Goody Proctor; I am an official of the court!
‘ This shows she is working for the court in order to gain power. Elizabeth would like to have power over Proctor. Power is often exploited in the western world, The Crucible shows that people made this same mistake in Salem. Power is an extremely sensitive theme able to evoke deep emotions. The second theme is hysteria, the girls are completely hysterical at the end of Act one this is linked to power as some think that the use of hysteria can help gain power. The hysteria moves the audience and keeps them deeply involved in the play.
The final theme is dignity, which has been lost throughout the play up until the last part of the play where proctor gains a great deal of respect, and dignity. In Act one Tituba has her dignity stolen, from her as does Abigail and the other girls. In Act Two John loses his dignity when he refuses to tell the court about Abigail. Themes play a major part in maintaining emotional intensity at the end of Act One and the beginning of Act Two. It is clear that The Crucible is emotionally intense at the end of Act One and beginning of Act Two.
Miller creates this intensity by employing dramatic techniques and drawing upon contextual significance to present two intense, but contrasting scenes. Even though the original audience would have found it emotional on different scales, it is obvious that all audiences would find it emotionally intense to some extent. Miller achieved emotional intensity by his use of dramatic techniques, interesting characters, allegorical significance and emotive themes.