The Crucible

internal conflicts

hi i need to do a paper proving the quote "one must have courage to be true to one's self" using at least four literary devices.

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Reverend Hale's battle is initiated by his personal commitment to God. In Act I, the

Reverend is described as an eager-eyed intellectual pondering the invisible world. Hale seeks

witches and gets them to confess, so god can bless them and rid them of the devil. An example of

this is when he said to Betty, "In nomine Domini Sabaoth sui filiique ite ad infernos," which

means: In the name of the lord of hosts and his son get thee to the lower world. This shows

Reverend Hale's views on witchery. He is a deeply religious man who was unrelenting in his

quest for the devil. Originally, Hale believed that there was witchcraft in the town and wanted to

drive it out. However as the play develops, Hale witnesses sincere and respectable townspeople

being sentenced and hanged. Hale tries to gain a perspective on those accused, by going to their

houses and putting questions to them, about their nature and religious behavior. He soon learns

that the court proceedings, lead by Judge Danforth were sending innocent people to their death,

in the name of Christianity. Here begins the Reverend's inner turmoil. With scrutiny, he looks at

himself and tries to figure out which way to go. Should he continue with what he is doing and

listen to Judge Danforth or should he listen to his conscience? He does try a feeble attempt to

talk to Danforth and explain how the unjust the court actions are, but again, his inner struggle

pulls him back to a more moderate stand. Hale then decides to persuade the wrongly accused to

confess witchcraft. At least this will save them from death by hanging. He preaches perjury to

the people, even though this is also against their religion. Hale's principles were ridden with guilt

and sadness because of his struggle with himself. Not only does Hale question himself, and

Danforth, but he questions his religion. Near the end of Act IV, Hale tells Elizabeth that

following religion is not worth it if religion can justify the death of so many innocent people

without credible evidence. This is the ultimate reproach, and Hale ends up leaving after the

hangings, with the weight of 19 innocent people (including the good names of Rebecca Nurse,

Martha Corey and John Proctor,) dead, which rests somewhat on his shoulders.

John Proctor a farmer and village commoner is similarly faced with an inner turmoil. He,

as well as Giles Corey and Rebecca Nurse became very prominent people and were respected in

Salem. Because of his role in the court cases, John gained respect. John also earns the respect of

the older members of the community, with his involvement of building the Salem church "I

nailed the roof upon the church, I hung the door." John Proctor is considered an honest man, but

few know that he is guilty of adultery with his former teenage servant, Abigail Williams. This

compromises his honesty in the eyes of his wife, Elizabeth. This also causes John to view

himself as a sinner and as someone unworthy of the respect he is given, especially when John

searches himself at the end of the play, crying "What is John Proctor?" Even though he gives

great importance to his public appearance, John Proctor has a very low view of himself and his

worth as a human being, which affects many of his decisions in the outcome of the play. "I

cannot mount the gibbet like a saint. It is a fraud. I am not that man. My honesty is broke

Elizabeth; I am no good man." He was fully aware of his immoral actions and the enormity of

the problem. Once he though this problem has vanished, it came back to slap him in the face.

Abigail decided to call John's wife Elizabeth, a witch, which in turn spurs conflict and anger

among the townspeople. Proctor then gets involved in these witch trials and claims to be with the

devil. His inner struggle is whether or not to tell the truth or fake a confession to save his own

life. He is confused as to which way to go and his main obstacles are firstly his pride and

secondly not being a party to implicating his innocent friends for similar crimes.


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