Superstition Is A Senseless Fear Of God
To begin, the protagonist character in each story is forced to follow and engage in rituals in which their authorities enforce upon them. In “The Lottery”, the town has a tradition of holding an annual lottery to determine who will be sacrificed. It is a ritual in which everyone must participate. It is visible that the citizens don’t want to give up this tradition, indicating how important the ritual has been made out to be. Particularly, this is proven when Old Man Warner says, ‘ Seventy-seventh year I been in the lottery(Jackson 4). No one is willing to try to stop the tradition, as a way of convincing themselves that there’s going to be a good corn crop the following June without a sacrifice. Moreover, every family must take part in this ritual, as enforced by the authority of the town. Similarly, in The Crucible, the authority imposes the idea of Christianity on all citizens in the town, because religion is woven into the everyday life of Salem. Furthermore, the townsfolk practice a form of Christianity that is focused on a set of clearly defined rules: you go to church every Sunday, you don’t work on the Sabbath, you believe the Gospel, you respect the minister’s word like it is God’s, and so on. Therefore, people who are accused of witchcraft, are allowing any deviation from these rules to be used as evidence for much greater sins against them. For instance, Reverend Hale suspects that John Proctor is associated with witchcraft, because he and his family do not attend church frequently, he forgets one of the commandments when asked to name them all, and by choosing not to baptize his last child. This is evident when Hale says Hale says, ‘In the book of record that Mr. Parris keeps, I note that you are rarely in the church on Sabbath day’ (Miller 32). Significantly, John Proctor and Tessie Hutchinson suffer unjust treatment because laws and practices are imposed upon them.
In addition, John Proctor and Tessie Hutchinson are publicly shamed and humiliated. In The Crucible, John Proctor conveys himself as a very dignified man through his honesty. He mainly remains honest to himself, leading him to express his true feelings towards the issues that afflict the town of Salem and its citizens. Furthermore, when he is given the chance to confess, he does not sign the false waiver that implicates his association with the devil, because he cares too much about reputation. This is clear when he says “Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang!” (Miller 133). However, when John Proctor is killed, his dignity is taken away from him, as he is publicly shamed. This is because the false accusations thrown at his name gave him a filthy reputation around the town. As well, the untrue allegations tossed at him left his name visibly filthy and tarnished. Similarly, the character Tessie Hutchinson in “The Lottery” faces public humiliation when she draws out the card with the black mark, indicating that she is the person being sacrificed. Nevertheless, Tessie Hutchinson is a fully accepted and well-known member of the community and gets along with everyone. In addition, she has a reputation of being very friendly towards her community and has a good reputation all around. ‘ Mrs. Hutchinson said. grinning, ‘Wouldn’t have me leave dishes in the sink, now, would you. Joe?’ and soft laughter ran through the crowd as the people stirred back into position after Mrs. Hutchinson’s arrival” (Jackson 2). Consequently, Tessie Hutchinson is made to look foolish and embarrassed in front of the whole town when she is stoned to death. Therefore, John Proctor and Tessie Hutchinson face callous treatment because are unreasonably embarrassed and ashamed.
In conclusion, John Proctor and Tessie Hutchinson are unfairly killed. “The Lottery” is a story of a town’s old superstitious ritual. The purpose of the lottery is to see who will be sacrificed to ensure that the harvest is plentiful that year. Furthermore, Tessie Hutchinson is the winner of that year’s harvest and is stoned to death by the townspeople. “Tessie Hutchinson was in the center of a cleared space by now, and she held her hands out desperately as the villagers moved in on her. “It isn’t fair,” she said” (Jackson 7). Significantly, Tessie has done nothing wrong, but the town’s people still threw stones at her only because she had the slip of paper with the mark on it. In accordance, The Crucible explains the superstition of witchcraft that exists in a society of strong Christian beliefs, and anyone who acts out of the ordinary is automatically accused of being a witch. This leads to the deaths of some innocent people who are accused and automatically found guilty, John Proctor is one of them. “I have given you my soul, leave me my name!” (Miller 133). Moreover, the town’s authority has no visible proof that John is involved in witchcraft because the superstition of witchcraft is an invisible crime. Although, they still claimed that John Proctor is guilty due to accusations thrown at his name by the other townspeople. Overall, John and Tessie were killed over foolish and unreasonable reasoning.
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