Presentation on theme: "ARTHUR MILLER, MCCARTHYISM, AND THE CRUCIBLE"— Presentation transcript:
1 ARTHUR MILLER, MCCARTHYISM, AND THE CRUCIBLE ENGLISH IIIMRS. B. LEE
2 WHO IS ARTHUR MILLER?Born in New York on Oct. 17, 1915, to the family of Isidore, a moderately rich Jewish ladies wear manufacturer and shopkeeper, and Augusta MillerFamily was ruined in the Great Depression, and he had to work in an automobile parts warehouse to earn money for college
3 WHO IS ARTHUR MILLER?Studied journalism, but graduated in English from the University of Michigan.Married his college sweetheart Mary Slattery.Began writing plays while a student at the University of MichiganFirst successes--All My Sons (1947) and Death of a Salesman (1949)Condemned the American ideal of prosperity on the grounds that few can pursue it without making dangerous moral compromises.
4 WHO IS ARTHUR MILLER?He was one lucky guy! He married legendary actress Marilyn Monroe!Was married a total of three times.Wrote The Crucible in 1953.Was accused of being a CommunistDied in 2005
5 The crucible is an allegory for mCcarthyism An ALLEGORY is a story, poem, or picture that can be interpreted to reveal a hidden meaning, typically a moral or political one.McCarthyism was also called The Red ScareWanting to point out to the world the parallel between the unjust Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and the Red Scare from to 1956Wrote The Crucible to make a powerful statement about the dangers of hysteria and the dehumanization that can result.
6 WHAT IS COMMUNISM?COMMUNISM is defined as a political theory derived from Karl Marx, advocating class war and leading to a society in which all property is publicly owned and each person works and is paid according to their abilities and needs.The color for Communism is RED.Symbol for Communism is the hammerand sickleWhy is the symbol of Communism thehammer and sickle?
7 Joseph McCarthy and the HUAC Who was Joseph McCarthy?Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin gained power by accusing others of subversion.In February 1950, a few months after the USSR detonated its first atomic device, McCarthy claimed to have a list of 205 Communists who worked in the State Department.Although his accusations remained unsupported and a Senate committee labeled them “a fraud and a hoax,” McCarthy won a national following. Branding the Democrats as a party of treason, he denounced his political foes as “soft on Communism” and called Truman’s loyal secretary of state, Dean Acheson, the “Red Dean.”
8 MCCARTHYISM McCarthyism came to mean false charges of disloyalty. In September 1950, goaded by McCarthy, Congress passed the McCarran Internal Security Act, which established a Subversive Activities Control Board to monitor Communist influence in the United States.
9 MCCARTHYISM CONT.McCarthy’s influence continued until 1954, when the Senate censured him for abusing his colleagues. His career collapsed.Fears of subversion continued. Communities banned books; teachers, academics, civil servants, and entertainers lost jobs; unwarranted attacks ruined lives.
10 The huac & hollywood House Un-American Activities Committee(HUAC) Committee questioned Americans who were suspected of being CommunistsThey summoned thousands of people to testifyGoal: to get as many names of “Communists” as possible
11 The huac & hollywoodHUAC investigated communism within Hollywood, calling a number of playwrights, directors and actors known for left-wing views to testify.Some of these testified for the committee to avoid prison sentencesThe Hollywood Ten, a group of entertainers, refused to testify and were convicted of contempt and sentenced to up to one year in prison.
12 The huac & hollywoodCertain politicians were also targetedhese people had two options:Admit to being a Communist and tell McCarthy names of other people who attended Communist meetingsORRefuse to admit anything (or rat out others) and be blacklistedCan’t get work if blacklisted!
15 BlacklistedOver 300 entertainers were placed on a blacklist for possible communist views and were thus forbidden to work for major Hollywood studios.Arthur Miller was one of those blacklisted.Miller admitted to the HUAC that he had attended meetings, but denied that he was a Communist.
16 BLACKLISTEDAttended four or five writer’s meeting sponsored by the Communist Party in 1947, supported a Peace Conference at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York, and signed many appeals and protestsRefusing to name others who had associated with leftist or suspected Communist groups, Miller was cited for contempt of Congre
17 IMAGINE IF IT WAS YOU……Even if you had no Communism in your own past, you could easily be in the same position as Arthur Miller- you knew someone who did. That was more than enough to get you in trouble with Senator McCarthy and similar investigators. Imagine what it was like being called in to testify. McCarthy or his aides might say, “Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Communist Party?” No. “Do you know anyone who is or was a Communist?” No. McCarthy holds up some cards. “We have the names of people who have already confessed.
18 IMAGINE IF IT WAS YOU……Your name came up in connection with their testimony. Why do you suppose that is?” You say you don’t know, but you can tell that no one believes you. Maybe you’re not so innocent after all, you think. Have you signed anything, donated any money, said anything to anybody that might sound suspicious? You begin to feel guilty either way: even if you don’t have any Communist connections, you’ve done nothing to stop the spread of this evil.You did it, it’s your fault, their questions seem to say. And they won’t let you go until you make up for it in some way. So you tell them about your friend who’s never home on Tuesday nights, or anyone you know who’s been acting a little odd the last few weeks. You name names, and they let you go. And afterward no one wants anything to do with you. You were called in to testify, there had to be a reason. You must be a Communist, or at least have been working for them. You lose your friends, your job, sometimes even your family.
19 THE RED SCARE COMPARED TO SALEM WITCH TRIALS The Crucible was Arthur Miller’s way of protesting the House Unamerican Activities Committee hearings. He compared the Communist hearings to the witch hunts of Salem, where gossip, rumors, and fear were evidence enough to convict people.The term “witch hunt” now applies to any activity where people are looking for a scapegoat or where they are using accusations to get revenge or to get personal gain or attention.
20 THE RED SCARE COMPARED TO SALEM WITCH TRIALS Miller wanted to point out to the world the amazing parallel between the unjust Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and the Red Scare from to 1956Miller wrote The Crucible to make a powerful statement about the dangers of hysteria and the dehumanization that can result.
22 1692 SALEM WITCH TRIALSPuritans had been persecuted in their native England, but they created a theocracy and eventually persecuted others.Puritans became embroiled in hysteria over the existence of witches.Most accused of being witches were women.
23 1692 SALEM WITCH TRIALSMany accused of being witches were healers and used plants to heal people.Many of the accused were without families, which made them easy targets.They were people who did not fit in with the mainstream of Puritan society.
24 WHY DID THE 1692 SALEM WITCH TRIALS HAPPEN? It began as a way for the oppressed girls to avoid being punished.It then became an ideal way to get revenge on anyone whom you disliked.People started accusing their neighbors of being witches so they could steal their farmland.People accused others of being witches if they wanted to steal their husbands or wives or possessions.
25 What does “crucible” mean? A severe testA place or situation in which concentrated forces interact to cause or influence change or development
26 SOME TIDBITS ABOUT THE CRUCIBLE A good deal of the information in the play misrepresents the literal events of the trial: at the time of the trial, John Proctor was sixty years old and Abigail Williams only eleven.The play is a parable for the McCarthy era,in which similar “witch hunts”occurred targeting citizensas communists rather thandisciples of the devil.
27 The crucible character introduction PROTAGONIST – Main CharacterANTAGONIST – Who or What the Protagonist is Fighting AgainstVS
28 Abigail WilliamsLeader of the group of girlsHaving an affair with John ProctorSmart, Manipulative, Jealous
29 JOHN PROCTOR Farmer Married but having an affair with Abigail Proud and (usually) honest
30 ELIZABETH PROCTORJohn Proctor’s WifeMoral and honestSometimes seen as “cold”
31 THE GIRLS Betty Parris: Daughter of the town minister Ruth Putnam: Daughter of a wealthy, greedy landownerMary Warren: Servant of the ProctorsMercy Lewis: Servant of the Putnams
32 Reverend parris Town Minister Paranoid Concerned with what others think of him
33 JOHN HALE “EXPERT” on Witchcraft Asked to come to Salem for his knowledgeIntelligent and Logical
34 TITUBASlave from BarbadosPerforms VoodooAccused of Witchcraft
35 OTHER IMPORTANT CHARACTERS GILES COREY (my favorite!)Old man who is pressed to death.OutspokenFiles lawsuits frequentlyREBECCA NURSEKind, older woman accused of witchcraftVery moral and sensible