I. Background and Procedure II. Colonial Literature III. The Crucible

The Crucible Overview The Overture pages 3-8

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The Crucible

  • Overview

The Overture pages 3-8

  • Group # Paragraphs
  • #1 Setting 1 – 3
  • #2 Theocracy 4 – 5
  • #3 The wilderness 6 – 7
  • #4 "City on a hill" 8 – 10
  • #5 Next generation Puritans 11 – 13
  • #6 Withcraft 14 – 15

Describe how the narrator/author sees Rev. Parris.

  • Describe how the narrator/author sees Rev. Parris.
  • Explain, in detail, the "town" and describe how the Puritan’s viewed their "town."
  • According to these paragraphs, what was the economic situation in Salem during this time?
  • How did the Europeans view the Puritans?
  • What does the narrator/author mean when he says that "There was a good supply of ne’er-do-wells?" Describe what you think a ne’er-do-well is and what their life might be like in Salem 1692.
  • What reason "more than the creed" does the author give for the people of Salem remaining so strongly united? Will that reason remain valid (consider when the author says, "the time of the armed camp had almost passed" in your response)?
  • Explain the duty of the two-man patrols appointed by the Church-Govt. as police officers. What exactly were they policing?
  • List the main tension of this section: ____________ vs. ______________

How did the Puritans view the forest and why?

  • How did the Puritans view the forest and why?
  • Explain why the Puritans viewed the Indians as heathens.
  • What is the main conflict/tension in this section?
  • How did the Puritans view other sects of Christianity? According to the author why did they feel this way?
  • What does it mean to believe one holds the candle that lights the world?
  • Explain the concept of the New Jerusalem.
  • List three character traits your peers should understand about the Puritans
  • Look up the word JUNTA in the dictionary, and write the definition here that makes the best sense with how it is used in this section.
  • What governmental change occurred that may have seemed frightening to the Puritan people?
  • How does Miller explain a THEOCRACY? (And what might "material or ideological enemies" mean?)
  • Other than possible witches, what does Miller say made these Puritans feel panic?
  • Even though Miller’s play is about historical figures in Salem in the 1690s, the play is also known to be an expression of his feelings about his own period in the 1950s. What does he say about repressions that could apply to the 1950s and even to our own time?
  • Why does Miller feel pity for the people of his play (the people of 17th century Salem)?
  • What does Miller say are two or three reasons that people felt good about crying witch against their neighbors?
  • Based on the previous question: In this section, what is Miller’s attitude about the strictness of the Puritans?

Day 13

Journal #3

  • Re-read pages 3-8
  • Describe Salem Village as given in Miller’s Commentary. Comment on the people, their beliefs, and their possible biases.

Act I

  • Study Guide
  • Character Map
  • Conflicts
  • Setting

So, What’s the Truth?

  • Tituba led six girls into a nearby forest to cast charms and spells, followed by a wild dancing ritual.
  • Ruth Putnam was the first girl to become afflicted.
  • The only symptom of bewitchment was that the victim could not be woken from a deep slumber.
  • John Proctor, Rebecca Nurse, and Martha Corey were all hung on the same day.
  • Tituba was asked to bake a “witchcake” in order to figure out who was afflicting Betty Parris. She was later accused of witchcraft by Betty and Abigail.
  • Betty Parris and Abigail Williams were the first to become afflicted.
  • Actual symptoms consisted of violent, physical tantrums.
  • Rebecca Nurse was hung on July 19th, John Proctor on August 19th, and finally, Martha Corey on September 22nd.
  • *** Tituba brought stories of voodoo and other supernatural events from Barbados. This alone compelled the girls to take part in harmless fortune-telling.

The Parris Family

  • Mrs. Parris had been dead for years and the family consisted of Betty (daughter), Mr. Parris, Abigail (niece), and Tituba (slave).
  • Betty was present for the trials.
  • Mr. Parris claimed to be a graduate of Harvard.
  • Tituba was single and didn’t have family as a slave. Tituba confessed quickly.
  • Mrs. Paris was alive during the incident and died in 1969, four years after the incident. The Parris family consisted of Mr. and Mrs. Parris, Betty, Thomas, and Susannah; Abigail was only “kinfolk.”
  • After the trials began Betty was sent away.
  • Mr. Parris actually went to Harvard, but dropped out.
  • Tituba was actually an Indian woman who had a husband named John and a daughter named Violet. She was also tortured for a long time before she confessed.

The Proctor Family

  • John Proctor is young and is a farmer.
  • Elizabeth is his only wife.
  • John Proctor only has two young sons.
  • Mary Warren was 17 in the story
  • John and Abigail committed adultery. Abigail worked for the Proctors before Mary
  • John is actually 60 and a tavern keeper.
  • Elizabeth is his third wife.
  • John has a daughter that is 15, a son that is 17, and another son that is 33 from a previous marriage.
  • Mary Warren is 20.
  • The adultery between Abigail and John is unlikely to occur as they lived far from each other and Abigail never worked for them.

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