Is John Proctor a Good Guy (‘the Crucible’, Arthur Miller)
Upon his very first appearance, John Proctor is presented as a rational, truthful guy; nevertheless, it soon becomes apparent that terrific guilt lies beneath his virtuous front. The repercussions of his past mistakes lead him (and his wife) to be implicated of witchcraft. Confronted with the choice to either confess or hang for his “criminal activities”, Proctor describes to his Spouse that he feels that craving ethical principle would be absolutely nothing however pretence for him, that a sinner has no right to pass away as would a saint: “I am no good male”. Is John Proctor a good man? What is a great man if not one that is prepared to die for a simply cause?
Or do his sins eliminate this final act of virtue? The love affair in between John Proctor and Abigail Williams lies at the heart of the witch-hunt hysteria, which, when all is stated and done, totals up to a heartbroken girl’s revenge. Proctors behavior concerning Miss Williams is certainly indisputably wrong. He engages in a relationship with his seventeen. Year-old home housemaid and by doing so not only breaks every ethical and religious law of the time, however also betrays his wife and children. Upon his wife © s discovery of the affair, he promptly abandons Abigail, putting her out onto the highroad.
According to the quote (mentioned by Abigail): “John Proctor that took me from my sleep and put understanding in my heart! I never knew what pretence Salem was, never knew the lying lessons was taught! “, one can presume that the affair was not just a lustful spree, but that Proctor put in the time to teach Abigail about the world, to reveal her pretence of the cold and lifeless society in which they live In a Puritan community, knowledge was a blessing to any child, et once the affair had actually ended, Proctor bid Abigail forget what he had actually informed her, “tear the light out of [her] eyes” and return to living as she once had.
This lack of compassion for Abigail not just shows a defective understanding of humanity, however motivates his ex-mistress to take fate into her own hands. What’s more, it is maybe this new understanding of society that allows Abigail to manipulate the Witch-hunt, eventually (and involuntarily) causing Proctors death. So one can see how his ruthless sincerity and publicly popular intolerance Of hypocrisy have actually been his failure. In fact, it is his passion and in advance way that lead him to the noose. Conquer by fury and frustration at being accused of witchcraft, he weeps hugely to the deputy governor: “God is dead!, a phrase pronounced as a criticism of the court’s approaches, but taken as proof of his agreement with the Devil. Here, as upon many occasions, his vehemence has actually been misinterpreted for evil, his effort to ease his other half as an effort to hinder God’s work. He is a male ruled by emotion, who lets his passion stand in the way Of his rationality. Proctor’s arrest features as the significant climax Of the play. Miller actively centre the climax around John’s failure, which marks the beginning Of completion; the hero has actually fallen, all is lost.
Yet, aside from his illegal relationship, John Proctor is all that a great natured Puritan villager must be. He is kind, truthful and devoted. It is these basic assets that will see him through to a respectable end. He shows real generosity and respect towards the great people of Salem, such as Rebecca Nurse. Judging himself a sinful male, he feels humbled next to she who has never ever swayed from the path of righteousness. In truth it is her example of self-confidence and royalty that encourages him not to sign the confession and let his good friends pass away in vain.
Which leads us to Proctors sense of loyalty. His fidelity to his buddies will show to be his strength and yet his weak point. Unlike the Putnam, he positions his loyalties prior to his own well being He seeks not self-advancement (Mr. Putnam, on the other hand, intends to get land from the accused) and wants only to safeguard what is right. Even in court, being offered the postponement of his other half’s sentence if he will drop the charge versus the women, he rejects the proposition, refusing to abandon his buddies.
Because of his relatively incorruptible fidelity, it appears weird that he needs to have been unfaithful to his own partner; it is perhaps since of his past disloyalty that he now feels the requirement to prove- to himself- that he is a dutiful guy. Finally, it is John’s love for his spouse and kids that offers him the strength to strive for What is best and withstand the temptation to give in to corruption. His affair was not the outcome of a loveless marriage, as Abigail thinks, but of a Puritanical inability to express emotion: “I never ever understood how need to say my love. It were a cold home kept! As Elisabeth forgives John for his cheating, she takes upon herself part Of the blame, declaring that she understood not how to express her feelings and drove him into the arms of a more loving woman: “It needs a cold better half to prompt lechery”. Elisabeth requesting his forgiveness just pains John more; he can not forgive himself for his sins and will not enable his spouse to blame herself for his errors in any way. Confession and absolution of sins did not exist in the Puritan church; in John’s eyes, just his death will want to give him God’s forgiveness and passage to Heaven.
Proctor installs the gibbet for his partner © s forgiveness, for God’s pardon, for his children’s honor, but also for his own clemency. As Elisabeth states at the very end of the play: “He have his goodness now. God forbid take it from him! “. The question to ask oneself is not whether John Proctor is a “excellent male”, however whether he selects to do what is right, rather than what is easy. Although having at first tried to prevent destroying his reputation to save his compatriots, he ultimately pertains to sacrifice not only his reputation, but also his life for the good of Salem.
In this respect he is a classic awful hero. He discovers the source of his downfall simply as it is far too late to conserve himself, however faces death with his head held high. Proctors character is certainly flawed, however it is these defects that permit him to select the ideal path; simply as to be brave is not to be fearless, to be a good male is not to be without fault. So, I conclude that if to be “excellent” is to love irrevocably, to put others’ believing above ones own, to stay devoted to one’s buddies through their darkest hours and to make the supreme sacrifice for an exemplary cause, then John Proctor is a good guy.