The Crucible Oct. 11

The Crucible Oct. 11 - Williams 1 Ryan Williams 18 October...

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Ryan Williams 18 October 2006 EN 102 Prof. Christine Smith The Gift of Power: Danforth’s Use of His Authoritative Powers Power, is often a catalyst in turning decent leaders into power hungry, stubborn dictators. When rulers are given the power to have the final say on issues, they tend to channel the course of events to go in the direction that they want them to go, not taking what is best for everyone else into consideration. Sometimes, they make decisions that will benefit themselves but actually harm their “subjects”. This happens to be the case in The Crucible. The Crucible , set in a Puritan town in Salem, Massachusetts, was run by a strict Puritan theocracy. Although not directly stated, one can assume that these Puritans came to the United States in hopes of finding tolerance for their religion. As David Gelernter states, “Puritanism reflected the unhappiness of English Protestants in the Elizabethan age…[who] wanted a purified church where each Christian dealt directly with the Bible and the Lord” (25). These unhappy Protestants were told by James I to, “conform themselves or [he would] harry them out of the land. In search of religious freedom, the persecuted Puritans set sail… for the New World” (25). In Salem, however, the government forces Puritan laws and beliefs so rigorously that any variation from the religion would result in extreme measures. Because Danforth and the other leaders of the community believe that their authority overrides the law, they deny the defendants their most basic human rights when the Puritan law is violated. Danforth’s influence in the society allows him to deny these rights without any
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This note was uploaded on 03/31/2008 for the course EN 102 taught by Professor Smith during the Fall '06 term at Butler.

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The Crucible Oct. 11 - Williams 1 Ryan Williams 18 October...

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