Get help from the best in academic writing.

Comparing the Salem Witch Trials, Nazi Germany, and the Red Scare

In the novel The Crucible, Arthur Miller paints an image in the reader’s mind of the brutality that ensued in the Salem, Massachucettes Witch Trials and ventures into the personal stories of both the victims and the people who initiated the entire catastrophe. History is constantly repeating itself, this becomes apparent by comparing the Salem Witch Trials, Nazi Germany, and the Communist scare in America. When Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible, he kept in mind what some thoughtlesslessly assumed to be an ever expanding Communist revolution and utilized some of the corrupt problems throughout those years in his play. Blind faith, ignorance, disloyalty, fighting for power, and human indecency are all contributing factors of the mass hysteria that ensued during the McCarthyist “witch- hunts” as well as the Salem Witch Trials in The Crucible. Millers intention for writing this story was not only to prove a point about the appalling historic tragedies, but to express the dominance that betrayal, thirst for power, and ignorance have over a community through the characters John Proctor, Abigail, and Reverend Hale.

John Proctor grows to be the hero of the story and his decision regarding pleading guilty to witchcraft and living with that lie; in contrast with not confessing, in which case he would be put to death. His ultimate decision assists Millers’ emphasis on the choices pertaining to betrayal. Proctor arrives in a point in his life where he is debating with himself the repercussions of betrayal to himself compared to betrayal of those citizens prior to him who were accused of witchcraft and died repectfully in his mind, as exemplary Christians. He disputes internally with himself and eventually decides that to die confident in …

… middle of paper …

…ter his internal switch flips and he stops believing everything he hears. Miller used Hale and the rest of the court- important religious and political figures- as a symbol of ignorance residing not only in the lower parts of a community but also in those who run it.

Arthur Millers’, The Crucible was written to exemplify the numerous amount of times that a group of people are taken into the grasp of mass hysteria, lead by duplicity, the search for power, and blind faith. The author shows these through specific victimized characters, the decietful citizens, and the towns unreliable government system. The book portays real life events about a time where all of these negative qualities lead to the death of innocent people and the corruption of a small village. Similar to the way additional sorrowful periods in history happens, around the world; over and over again.

Comparing Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club and The Woman Warrior

Comparing The Joy Luck Club and The Woman Warrior

Amy Tan’s immensely popular novel, The Joy Luck Club explores the issues faced by first and second generation Chinese immigrants, particularly mothers and daughters. Although Tan’s book is a work of fiction, many of the struggles it describes are echoed in Maxine Hong Kingston’s autobiographical work, The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. The pairs of mothers and daughters in both of these books find themselves separated along both cultural and generational lines. Among the barriers that must be overcome are those of language, beliefs and customs, and geographic loyalty. The gulf between these women is sadly acknowledged by Ying-ying St. Clair when she says of her daughter, Lena, “‘All her life, I have watched her as though from another shore'” (Tan 242). Ultimately, it falls to the daughters, the second, divided generation, to bridge the gap of understanding and reconnect with their old world mothers.

The Joy Luck Club begins with a fable that immediately highlights the importance of language in the immigrant story. It is the tale of a hopeful young woman traveling from China to America to begin a new life. She carries with her a swan, which she hopes to present to her American daughter someday. The language barrier is exposed when the woman’s good wishes for her future child are defined by the idea that this daughter of an immigrant will never know the hardships endured by her mother because she will be born in America and will “speak only perfect American English” (Tan 18). However, things do not turn out exactly as planned for the young woman. Her lovely swan is confiscated by customs officials, and her treasured daughter, now an adult, does in…

… middle of paper …

…Strategies of Authorship in Asian America. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2000.

Huntley, E. D. Amy Tan : A Critical Companion. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1998.

Kingston, Maxine Hong. The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. New York: Vintage International, 1976.

Soderstrom, Christina. “Maxine Hong Kingston.” Voices From the Gaps: Women Writers of Color. University of Minnesota. 11 Apr. 2001 .

Tan, Amy. The Joy Luck Club. New York: Vintage, 1991.

Tavernise, Peter. “Fasting of the Heart: Mother-Tradition and Sacred Systems in Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club.” The Joy Luck Club Page. 1994 Home page. 11 Apr. 2001 .

Verschuur-Basse, Denyse. Chinese Women Speak. Trans. Elizabeth Rauch-Nolan. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1996

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.