The Meaning of Justice in The Crucible
In everyday life we can see that the concept of justice has a different meaning for everyone. In the act three of The Crucible we see how meaning of justice is different depending on the character, time and occasion. In this section, Arthur Miller will also show how it is possible to increase conflict quickly when people are scared. Judge Danforth represents the law and a time when many people believed in witches. He is highly respected in society and he comes to Salem to oversee the trial of the accused witches. Although he will realize with the help of evidence that the girls are not really obsessed, he cannot admit to himself that he has been deceived. He would rather accept that he was watching people die than acknowledge the truth because it might humiliate him.
“You must understand, sir that a person is either with this court or he must be counted against it, there be no road between. This is a sharp time, now, a precise time – we live no longer in the dusky afternoon when evil mixed itself with good and befuddled the world. Now, by God’s grace, the shining sun is up, and them that fear not light will surely praise it.”
John Proctor cheated on his wife, but now when she is arrested he wants to help her. He made a statement saying that Martha Corey, Rebecca Nurse and his wife Elizabeth have been true Christian women and that they had never been in contact with the devils. This statement was signed by the local people. but Danforth does not accept this statement as valid proof because it does not contain the names of the people who signed it. With a false confession he had a possibility to save his wife but ultimately he decided to preserve his honor and dignity and did not sign a false statement. “Proctor: If you do not free my wife tomorrow, I am set and bound to ruin you, Abby.”
In this act Reverend Hale presents connection between the citizens whose women are accused of being witches and of the court. He asked Danforth to look at evidences. He also supported John Proctor and asked Danforth not to judge Proctor by his visits to the church. When Proctor and Giles get sent to jail he concludes that lies and manipulations prevent a fair trial at the court and moves away.
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