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The Crucible, Arthur Miller Background. Arthur Miller Born in New York City in 1915 Also wrote ‘Death of a Salesman’ and ‘All My Sons’. Was married to.

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Presentation on theme: "The Crucible, Arthur Miller Background. Arthur Miller Born in New York City in 1915 Also wrote ‘Death of a Salesman’ and ‘All My Sons’. Was married to."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Crucible, Arthur Miller Background

2 Arthur Miller Born in New York City in 1915 Also wrote ‘Death of a Salesman’ and ‘All My Sons’. Was married to Marilyn Monroe

3 America in the 1950s The Cold War had begun Both the USA and USSR were producing powerful nuclear weapons America was at war with Korea There was a lot of fear of Communism People felt it could destroy the American way of life

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5 McCarthyism Senator Joseph McCarthy was the head of the House Un-American Activities commission If people criticised the government it was seen as un-American Artists, writers, film directors and actors were accused and some found it impossible to work in America again The trials were driven by paranoia Victims included Charlie Chaplin, Robert Oppenheimer, Leonard Bernstein…

6 Miller and McCarthy In 1956 Miller was called before the Committee and asked to give names of writers who had been at a meeting of communists 10 years earlier He refused to give names He said “I would not violate what on the spur of the moment I said was my sense of myself” He was fined for contempt

7 The Salem Witch Trials Miller saw comparisons in the witch hunts which took place in Salem, Massachusetts in Some adolescent girls became interested in the supernatural People became paranoid and believed girls to have been possessed by the devil Many were jailed and twenty people were hanged

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9 A political parable The play is not a simple retelling of history. Miller adapts details to create a more successful play He sometimes played down the parallels between McCarthyism and the play later in life However the play can be seen as a parable about the politics of the 1950s

10 Conscience The play revolves around a man, John Proctor who is asked to make a confession He makes a stand against a law which is operating unfairly

11 The title A Crucible is: An earthen pot for melting ores, metals etc. The society is enclosed and the paranoia (OR HEAT) is making things break down.


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