Character Analysis Of John Proctor In The Crucible By Arthur Miller

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As Thomas Jefferson once said, “Nobody can acquire honor by doing what is wrong.” In Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible, John Proctor struggles to act honorably and maintain his good name in the Puritan society of 1692 Salem. John Proctor is said to be, “…a sinner not only against the moral fashion of time, but against his own vision of decent conduct”(Miller 19). After his wife Elizabeth discovers his affair with Abigail, she loses trust in her husband. John blames her for having a cold heart and does not fully accept his own responsibility in destroying her trust by cheating on her. In this case, John acts as a dishonorable man, claiming, “I have not moved from there to there without I think to please you, and still an everlasting funeral…show more content…
However, he begins his journey to becoming honorable by telling the court, “G-d help me, I lusted, and there is a promise in such sweat. But it is a whore’s vengeance…” (Miller 102). Right before Proctor’s execution, Elizabeth goes to visit him. Judges Danforth and Hathorne ask Elizabeth to try to get Proctor to confess, but she declines to influence him. Proctor signs the confession and when the Judge tells him it will be hung publically on the church door, Proctor grabs it and tears it in half. Proctor is inspired by the noble behavior of Rebecca Nurse and others who refuse to falsely confess to witchcraft nor will they falsely implicate others. Proctor refuses to lie and takes a step backwards, he says, “I have given you my soul; leave me my name”(Miller 133). Elizabeth understands that Proctor has to do what he thinks is right. By refusing to confess and implicate others, John Proctor acts with personal integrity. These actions redeem him, and he goes to his death with a good and honorable name. Even his wife can see that goodness, and she honors his decision when she says, “He have his goodness now. G-d forbid I take it from him!” (Miller 134). Acting with honor is doing the right thing, even if the cost is very

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