In American history, times cannot get much darker than either of these. Those accused(either of witchcraft or communism) had nowhere to run. Trapped in an endless torrent of accusations and unjust punishment, they lived their lives in fear of what the next day would drop their doorstep. Literary critic Philip G. Hill states an important point in his essay on The Crucible: “From the short view inescapably adopted by critics themselves caught up in the hysteria of McCarthyism, the play may well have seemed to push too hard the obvious parallels between the witch-hunting in Salem of 1692 and ‘witch-hunting’ in the Washington and New York of 1952.” Senator Joseph McCarthy and Abigail Williams(from the play) shared the same mindset. They made life miserable for those accused and did not stop, even when they had had their “fun”.
The Puritans wanted to alter practices promoted by the Anglican Church as well as decrease the power of the discriminatory and corrupt bishops. After the death of the last Tudor, Elizabeth, King James I began to overtax the Puritans. The Puritans, persecuted by the King and angered by his favor towards the Catholics, had a falling out with England and therefore were voluntary candidates for colonists in the New World. Upon arrival in the New World; however, they preceded to practice intolerance towards others outside of their group. Puritan Massachusetts or the “city upon a hill” for example, instilled a theocratic government in which it was treason to oppose any Puritan practice.
In October 1947, the Committee began to subpoena screenwriters, directors, and other professionals about their known or suspected membership in the Communist Party. This was called the “Black List”, also known as the “Hollywood Ten”, they cited the First Amendment, but this tactic failed and they were sentenced to prison for contempt of Congress (Wales and Sanger). The military was also at risk and 83 alleged Communist were discharged, also nearly 3,000 seamen and longshoremen lost their jobs due to this cause (Drummey). Suspected homosexuality was also common cause for being a target for McCarthyism. In many cases simply being subpoenaed was sufficient cause to be fired and blamed for this horrific
Overall, “McCarthyism” did nothing but hurt the United States. It made the government act like a paranoid schizophrenic for years to come, and ended up wasting time, energy, and effort by the American people that could have been used in some other area of war. McCarthy wasted time with “—the social reforms that were never adopted, the diplomatic initiatives that were not pursued, the workers who were not organized into unions, the books that were not written, and the movies that were never filmed (Schrecker,
The poor were treated with contempt and marginalized. The religion was distorted to amass wealth endangering the society as a whole. Jesus saw it and was determined to redeem men from the clutches of this unfair system. Viewed against this background, it is fair enough to assert that He advocated a change of the existing order of things. Within the meaning of this interpretation, Jesus was a rebel, yet He did not campaign for the achievement of the aim through violence.
Trying to find a communist spy was extremely difficult in the Hollywood career; anyone who identified as communist sympathizers lost their jobs and reputations were ruined. Several had their passports taken, while others were thrown jail for not giving names of other communists. All trials were publicized, and often careers were destroyed based on untrue accusations. All artists brought to trial were blacklisted and for most, this meant the end of promising careers. However, after many years the intensity simmered down and many were able to return to work.
The failure to convert the Native Americans to Christianity perhaps is another reason that changed the puritans’ attitude toward the Indians. The puritans saw Indians less as people that needed to be converted but irredeemable heathens that needed to be exterminated in order to fulfillment God’s divine plan, like Canaanites or Amalekites in the Bible. “Now He hath many ways to destroy them”, said Mary at the end of her
McCarthyism in the 1950’s was the practice of broadcasting allegations of political treachery or rebellion with inadequate regard to evidence. The events that took place in the 1950’s concerning McCarthyism are what inspired Miller to write his play on the Salem witch trials of 1692. The fear of repeating the horrors of the past pushed him to try and open the eyes of those who seemed to be following a dangerous path. The Crucible and McCarthyism both contain instances of false accusation, wrongly gained power, and mass hysteria. Similarly to the Salem witch trials, McCarthyism started in a time of great fear, but instead of fearing witches that made pacts with the Devil, the people of the 1950’s feared communism.
He had many more points that just charity and consistency, and they were all very important, but I thought these two were the most interesting and most controversial within today’s society. Emerson’s view on anti-religion is also a strong subject that is viewed down upon by most people. Emerson felt the Christian religion dampened the spirit rather than bringing it up. Although Emerson was against religion in some ways, he still mentions God and a “higher power” throughout his essay, so it shows that he does believe in some form of higher power. Hitchens is very anti-religious and is a well-known atheist.
The Crucible The theme jealousy can destroy lives is shown through the actions of Abigail Williams affects Elizabeth Proctor, John Proctor and herself. “This can’t work anymore, I love someone else.” Hearing these words can affect many people’s lives, causing them to hurt others around them.” “The Crucible” was written in 1953 by Arthur Miller. The play is about the witch trials that took place in Salem Massachusetts; where many innocent people were accused of witchcraft. Abigail’s actions sent Elizabeth to jail, but also cause John his freedom and life. At the end of act four Proctor refuses to give his name to the court, he clearly stated that he had already gave himself in and told them that he was a man of the devil and that they couldn’t take his name, because that’s the only thing he had left.