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Arthur Miller's The Crucible Literary Essay+

sevans 1 / -  
Feb 11, 2010   #1
The Crucible Compare Rebecca Nurse to John Proctor from Arthur Miller's The Crucible

In life, people are often put in a difficult situation where their character is tested. They are forced to go against their morals and only the strong-willed are able to stick to what they believe is right and wrong. John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse in Arthur Miller's The Crucible are two of these strong characters that stick to their morals even when their lives are on the line. Despite having similar morals, these two key characters are different in their flaws, and their reasons for sacrificing themselves.

John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse have many similarities. Their most similar characteristics are their values, morals, and beliefs. They are both honest, good people that rarely ever lie. They are Christian, and care very much for their family. They are both sympathetic, good natured individuals. When these two vital characters became victims of the witchcraft trials, Proctor and Nurse were forced to confess in court. However, because they are such strong characters they were able to stick to their values regardless of the consequence. When put in the difficult situation they both chose to tell the truth and die rather than lie and save their life.

Although John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse have some similarities, they are different in their flaws. Proctor has many flaws which eventually lead to his downfall. The greatest flaw, of course, is his affair with Abigail Williams. He originally does not expose Abigail in fear of being exposed himself. When he does eventually tell the court of Abigail's intentions it is too late. Many people have already been killed and the court has convicted too many people to turn back. Another flaw of Proctor's is his temper. When things don't go his way and friendly discussion does not work, Proctor will get angry. The injustice within the town is Proctor's main source of anger and throughout the play he threatens to "whip the devil out of"(59) Elizabeth, Mary Warren, and Abigail. Rebecca Nurse, on the other hand, appears flawless throughout the entire play. She seems to have made no mistakes in the entirety of her life and continues to never lie until she no longer breathes. When put in the situation to confess she never once thinks twice and consistently tells the truth. Even after all off the hysteria, Rebecca Nurse does not become bitter at all. Nevertheless, Rebecca Nurse's perfection is very different to the many flaws of John Proctor.

In addition to their difference in flaws, John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse are also different in the reasons to why they refused to confess. After getting his wife's consent Proctor decides to admit to witchcraft. It is only after he learns that they will nail to the church the confession he recently signed does he decide to deny everything. He realizes that confessing would label him a liar and dishonour his name. Proctor believes that "God does not need [his] name nailed upon the church"(142) and that he has "given [them] his soul,"(143) they should at least "leave [him his] name"(143). Proctor's self pride, honour, and dignity are more important than his life which is why he refuses to confess. On the contrary, Rebecca Nurse denies witchcraft because it is not in her to lie. She says to Proctor earlier in the play "Let you fear nothing! Another judgement awaits us all"(89) as she knows that if she continues to tell the truth God will be waiting for her above.

John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse are two vital characters of The Crucible. Although they both share some similarities in their morals and beliefs they are more different in their flaws and reasons for denying withcraft.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Feb 12, 2010   #2
use a comma for the compound sentence:
They are forced to go against their morals and only the strong-willed are able to stick to what they believe is right and wrong .

They are Christian, and they care very much for their family.

You have excellent topic sentences! This esay has good structure, but a way to improve the structure would be to add one more sentence to the end of that intro paragraph. It ends with a sentence that says they have sims and differences, but one more sentence should be added: a thesis statement that expresses the main idea, the main observation you make after comparing and contrasting the two.


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