McCarthyism’s Connection to Crucible Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 9 October 2016

McCarthyism’s Connection to Crucible

During the 1940s to the 1950s, McCarthyism took its way, ruining innocent people lives through false the accusations of being affiliated in Communism. The innocent people that were accused and not found guilty couldn’t return back to their normal lives. One of the people that were trialed was Arthur Miller, author of The Crucible. Miller didn’t take this lightly and felt that something had to be done, so he wrote The Crucible connecting the McCarthy trials with the Salem witch trials. There were numerous relations of the Salem witch trials and McCarthyism, but there were three that stood out the most. During the McCarthy trials and Salem witch trials, innocent people endured the scare factor which brought out strange behavior, the accused couldn’t go back to their regular lives, and the accused had to endure the harsh interrogations.

In The Crucible and during McCarthyism, it was prudent to go by the expectations that society presented or one may run the risk of having their reputation flawed. In The Crucible, Abigail and few other girls were discovered dancing in the woods by Rev. Parris. When Rev. Parris discovered this he couldn’t let it go, because during those times if you had time to dance then you had time to read the Bible. Innocent U.S. Government officials lost their jobs to be suspected of being Communist by McCarthy so he may move up the political ladder. During McCarthyism and Salem witch trials, the smallest evidence was used to make their accusations. In The Crucible and McCarthy trials, both include the faulty accusations and harsh interrogations that were placed on innocent citizens.

During the time of McCarthyism, people lives were monitored by the government to reveal any unusual behaviors that may be considered Communist. Much of the evidence that was used was pulled out of someone’s file that may have been ten years old. In The Crucible, Proctor was thought of being affiliated with witchery for not coming to church in a couple of weeks. Proctor didn’t come because of his wife’s illness, but even this excuse wasn’t enough to get him in the clear completely. The wild accusations of the McCarthy trials and in The Crucible, created a stir within both societies that caused people to alter their lifestyles in hopes of not being noticed.

The Red Scare of McCarthyism was focused in the government system and it stood for such a long time with support from people due to the anxiety of Communists being in the U.S. In The Crucible, nearly one hundred people were trialed and found guilty of witchery in on year. Giles Corey accused his wife because she was reading a book other than the Bible. The anxiety of the fear that his wife may be a witch brought him to the court to plea his belief.

The fear factor, strict expectations of society, and reputations being ruined were factors that made living during McCarthyism and the Salem witch trials nearly impossible to not become involved. Everyone during those times, presented a fear of the witch hunts that caused them to accuse people they have known for years, which kept these trials stable. No one could escape the witch hunts, and those whom did were lucky to not have had their lives ruined and banned from any jobs and spending time with your family. Both periods of time share the regret and unfortunate events that innocent people had to endure.

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  • University/College: University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 9 October 2016

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