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Mass Hysteria in The Crucible

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by

Greg Goetz

on 3 February 2014

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Transcript of Mass Hysteria in The Crucible

Evidence #2
By the
end of Act I
, Salem is in the
early stages of the blaze
that spreads because of
the uncontrollable, irrational behavior
of the girls.
Evidence #3
Final Analysis
Overall Claim
pg. 48:

Abigail:
“I saw Goody Hawkins with the Devil!”
Betty:
“I saw Goody Bibber with the Devil!”
Abigail:
“I saw Goody Booth with the Devil!”

on pg. 44

Hale:

“You have sent your spirit out upon this child, have you not?
Abigail:

“She sends her spirit on me in church; she makes me laugh at prayer.”

Evidence #1
pg. 27:

Rebecca:

To Parris
: I hope you are not decided to go in search of loose spirits, Mr. Parris. I’ve heard promise of that outside.”
The emotional
mass hysteria
that drives the plot of Arthur Miller’s play,
The Crucible
, is a
wild fire
ignited by
several sparks
in Act I.
The village of Salem had an
underlying fear of witchcraft
, and there are
rumors
about the
influence of witchcraft
on the
behavior of the girls
.
Mass Hysteria
in
The Crucible

Analysis #1
Analysis #2
In her

attempt to escape punishment
,

Abigail reacts to Hale’s questions for Tituba by

using Tituba as a scapegoat

for her own situation. This is one of the first examples of how

the hysteria spreads

as

Abigail claims her first public victim
.
Analysis #3
After the
girls have seen Tituba “free herself” from the Devil

by
falsely accusing others
, they begin to follow Abigail’s lead by naming women who they saw with the Devil. This act will

pull innocent women into the hysteria

and

the pattern will continue
.
Full transcript