Attitudes to slang

Hi year ten!

In order to prepare for your Spoken Language CA, you should collect data from media sources. As well as the newspaper articles that you have been provided with, you could collect opinions from a range of viewpoints in these videos:




ACT TWO- SEGMENT 2- ‘Mary’s conversation with Proctor and Elizabeth’ by Hamzah

Character and Action

  • Proctor
  • Mary
  • Elizabeth


  • Mary Warren comes back from Salem and Proctor gets furious at her because he is against all the witchcraft trials and he told her he cannot go there.
  • Mary Warren claims she is sick (because of the devil).
  • Mary Warren gives a doll to Elizabeth as a gift which she made.
  • Mary breaks the news that ‘Goody Osburn will hang.’
  • She also says that Sarah Good confessed to witchcraft.
  • Good Osburn is pregnant, so she will not hang, could be foreshadowing what is going to happen to Elizabeth.
  • Mary feels as if she has gained some power through all the trials.
  • Mary tells John Proctor and Elizabeth that Elizabeth has been accused of witchcraft by Abigail.

Themes and context


‘’I am bound by law, I cannot tell it.’’– Mary says this to Proctor and feels she has got power, now she is with the law, and important to the court.

‘’I’ll not be ordered to bed no more, Mr Proctor! I am eighteen and a women, however single!’’– context: A women of Mary’s status would not talk to their master like that- this shows how much power the girls and Mary felt they had.

‘’ (He starts for his rifle).’’


‘’ she sometimes made a compact with Lucifer, and wrote her name in his black-book with her blood and bound herself to torment Christians till Gods thrown down and we all must worship hell forever.’’–  Religion is very important at the time so people worshipping the devil would be something big for the people in Salem, which is why it was taken so serious.

Language/structure and effects:

Clipping: ‘’Why, she’s weepin’!’’ – Shows the way puritans spoke and were a form of slang.

Metaphor: ‘’ I may blush for my sin.’’- (Procter says this to Elizabeth)

Act two: key segment 4 ‘The change in Hale’ by Erick

Character & Action


  • Authoritative
  • Respected
  • Wise
  • Arrogant
  • Cocky
  • Dominant

Hale is knowledgeable and wise man, he takes into consideration the situation of village is fully aware that much wrong is happening in the town of Salem. Hale is shocked to find out that Elizabeth proctor has been accused of witchcraft. During this period of the play we see a slight change in Hale as he is changing his mind and overview on the towns decisions .He questions his instincts and fails to stand up to in court as Abigail and the girls are over-rated and have extreme power at their hands .Hale is a sinister and a bit creepy of a character to show that he is an outsider and not from the village and shows the way of thinking as he is well educated witchcraft authority is weighed in the books he carries.

Themes & Context:

Religion: Hale is a good Christian, stands by his words acknowledges the importance of good and evil and is aware of the how different societies should work and god is the ultimate judge.

Power/Status: Hale feels highly respected as he has been called upon from another town to use his knowledge. However he is unable to stand up against court or make significant point as others may disagree.

Hysteria: A great issue is raised because John Proctor misses out on one of his commandments (adultery) a bit of foreshadowing. Hale uses this opportunity to question Johns faith in Christianity and patronises him through his power to be able to, by raising many other questions.

Witchcraft: Witchcraft has meant that Elizabeth is accused of it, Hale is nervous and hesitant because he can’t imagine Elizabeth of being of such nature. E.g. (Wets his lips)-he has to inform Elizabeth of the situation because in the town Witchcraft has overpowered loyalty.

Puritans: Hale who believes in his master knowledge of witchcraft takes advantage of johns and Elizabeth weaknesses and the coldness between them. Hale takes advantage of religion. He is a cocky and patronising character e.g. “let you repeat them” he asks john to repeat the commandments so he can pick out any mistakes. Whilst Hale was questioning the Proctors he got more comfortable and decided to stay longer in the Proctors house

Revenge: Hale later on begins to have doubts about the accusations just after coming from Rebecca Nurse’s house (a pious old humble women)Who was also accused ,he goes to the proctors to tell Elizabeth that her name had been mentioned by Abigail and that she will be taken for trials. Abigail does this to get her back on Elizabeth as she is madly in love with John and is trying to get in the way of Elizabeth’s and John relationship

Language/Structure & Effects:

Archaic Language is used throughout the novel as it portrays the way English was spoken in the 1600’s

Religious Words: Satan, Commandments, God, Lord, Holy, Christian, Theology

Metaphorical Language : (Hale)-“theology, sir, is a fortress: no crack in a fortress maybe accounted small”-(Hale emphasises on the importance of religion)

Dramatic Language: (as though a secret arrow had pained his heart)

Foreshadowing: (suspiciously)-why-why did you, keep this? (Truth about Abigail’s lie)

Commandments > misses out adultery…

Hale is portrayed by the author to be persuasive /overpowering and patronising because he has much authority. E.g. – “This is strange time mister, no man may longer doubt the powers of the dark are gathered in monstrous attack upon this village .there is too much evidence now to deny it. You will agree sir”

There is a change of characters actions for example John & Elizabeth “cold” relationship grows stronger and Hale attitude towards the decisions made by others in the village.

Act 3: segment 2– ‘When the girls behave hysterically causing John Proctor to falsely confess.’ By Dhaval and Kishan V

Character and action

  • The atmosphere of the courtroom is extremely tense, as a number of convictions and executions and false accusations are announced.
  • Proctor brings Mary Warren to convince the judges that the girls are pretending.
  • The girls behave hysterically, despite Mary and Proctor continuously telling the judges that they are pretending.
  • Then, Proctor confesses of adultery with Abigail and accuses her of ‘harlotry/prostitution,’ which Danforth heavily doubts. This is as; he believes that Proctor is lying, as one will not want to damage one’s pride.
  • Mary Warren agrees with Proctor, but shows fear, as Abigail’s constant threatening makes her vulnerable.
  • Elizabeth is called into the courtroom, due to her honest and virtuous nature, which is proclaimed by John. Proctor and Abigail are made to face their backs on her. This is to prevent her from communicating with him, so the judges can confirm if Proctor is lying or not.
  • However Elizabeth lies to save Proctor from being convicted of adultery, so she repeats that Abigail has dissatisfied her, and uses an understatement – that John ‘fancied’ her.
  • The judges observe no match in their statements and thus send Elizabeth away, doubting John. Hale protests against the court’s analysis of the situation and defends the Proctor’s, and is heavily against Abigail.
  • Suddenly, Abigail weirdly screams up towards the ceiling and says that she sees a bird. Danforth questions her and is trying to analyse the situation, whilst Proctor and Mary still continue to protest, telling Abigail to stop the drama.
  • Then, all the girls begin to mimic Abigail’s dramatic and strange behaviour, as they begin to accuse Mary of a witch.
  • Danforth is convinced by it, and starts to frighten and interrogate Mary, whose anxiety and fear begins to heavily increase.
  • Proctor tells her to stay firm and resilient in telling Danforth this is all a lie.
  • As the girls begin to describe the actions of the bird and Danforth’s unnerving interrogation, with Parris’ mellifluous and sadistic blackmailing, Mary is extremely anxious and accuses Proctor.
  • She starts accusing Proctor of ‘sending his spirit out’ and ‘dong the Devil’s work.’ She adds false description of ‘what happened to her’, just like how the other girls used to lie.
  • Mary becomes over-dramatic, and we learn that fear has made her reunite with Abigail completely.
  • Danforth interrogates Proctor, using emotive and religious language. Also, he insults Hale’s authority again, and wants a reaction from Proctor.
  • Proctor is furious by the corruption of religious, and blasphemes by saying ‘God is dead!’ (he refers to the corruption of religion in this line). Then, he sarcastically and furiously uses exclamatory and emotive language of blasphemy, which the audience would perceive as being sarcastic. However, Danforth is convinced that he is with the Devil and commands to jail him.
  • At the end of the act, Hale is utterly disgusted by the whole scene, and furiously walks out the courtroom, followed by Proctor cursing the judges again. Danforth tries to call for Hale, but he has already left.

Themes and Context

Witchcraft: This is prominent in this act, as the girls are shown to use hysterical and bizarre behaviour, to accuse witchery on other people; this may be due to fear, revenge or to gain status. When Proctor and Marry try to convince the judges that the girls are pretending, the girls use religion at their advantage to stop them from doing so. Also, witchcraft has sexism associated with it, as mainly, a greater proportion of females (e.g. Mary Warren, Elizabeth, Sarah Good etc.) are accused, compared to the male population (e.g. John Proctor).

Power: This scene emphasises, that the corruption of religion is advantageous of those who immorally desire for power. The girls dominate the court, and even the judges are convinced by their hysteria, relying on the ‘power of witchcraft.’ Also, the local hypocrites, such as Parris and Putnam, encourage false accusations to gain more power. Hale’s authority begins to decrease, as the court is ‘owned’ by the girls.

Hysteria: The girls are suppressed by the orthodoxy of Puritanism, and fear hanging if their secret of pretence is uncovered. So, they start behaving abnormally and vigorously, to convince that people in the village are using witchcraft to cause these behaviours.

Vengeance: The Puritans, contradicting their own religious principles, have carried their vengeance from Britain, which is portrayed by them using this vengeance, and justifying it through religion, by accusing people of being witches or in affiliation of the devil.

Fear: To reiterate, the suppression of women in the 16th century, and the fear of being ‘condemned’, if they behave unnaturally, has caused these girls to use immoral principles, such as pretence and lying, to save themselves.

Adultery: This seems controversial to the play, as adultery is seen sinful to the Puritans. However, the playwright uses John Proctor, committing adultery with Abigail, in this scene to show the hypocrisy of the people. Also, irony is created, as Miller shows the ‘moral’ and servile nature of wives, as Elizabeth innocently begins to save her husband and lies, despite knowing that he has deceived her.

Religion (Antichrist and Blasphemy): Miller portrays how the corruption of religion attacks the innocent and moral people, who begin to doubt its very existence. John Proctor is shown to be blasphemous towards the end, which tells the audience, that the corruption of religion can give rise to agnostic and atheistic philosophies.

Language, Structure and Effects

A climaxing structure occurs in this scene as it begins with convictions, the girls’ hysterical behaviour, Elizabeth’s innocent lying to save John, the hysteria increases and Mary condemns John and the scene ends with John confessing by using blasphemy and ‘atheistic’ ideas to express his anger against the corruption of religion. Throughout the scene, formal, biblical, archaic, exclamatory, declarative, imperative and figurative language is used, which is fine tuned with hysteria, irony, religion and the authority and seriousness that a courtroom possesses.

Proctor: ‘I have made a bell of my honour! I have rung the doom for my good name – you will believe me Mr Danforth! My wife is innocent, except she knew a whore when she saw one!’ The use metaphorical language along with exclamation marks at the end of each sentence conveys Proctor’s anger towards Danforth, which mirrors the audience’s anger towards this 16th century society. The imperative used in ‘you will believe me’ and the declaratives John uses to convey the virtuous nature of Elizabeth, shows his helplessness and fury, as the situation has escalated highly, therefore to get a basic point across, violent behaviour is necessary. Words such as ‘doom’, ‘rung’, ‘honour’ give connotations to emotive and exclamatory language, used to create an impact on the reader, about the violent reactions required to eliminate stupidity in society. Also, Proctor’s defence signifies a proud man in the 16th century, who is ready to give his life to protect his family.

Hale: ‘I beg you, stop now before another is condemned. I may shut my conscience to it no more. Private vengeance is working through this testimony! From the beginning this man has struck me true. By my oath to Heaven, I believe him now, and pray, you call back his wife before we’ – Here, ‘beg you’ connotes to Hale’s authority being slowly diminished in the village, as he is shown to be pleading. However, Miller shows his pride in imperatives in ‘stop now’ and ‘you call back his wife.’ The audience will prefer this pride as it’s rational and moral, however, it is ironical as his judgement is not being considered, as the corruption of religion has defeated him, which can be seen by ‘-‘ to indicate he is being cut off by another speaker. The use of statements and emotive language e.g. ‘no more’, ‘I believe him now’, ‘pray’, ‘struck me true’, with formality used to create emphasis and exclamation marks highlights his anger towards the situation. The phrase ‘struck me true’ is figurative and ironical, as it shows us how Hale realises how he was previously wrong, and the rationality of John has finally made him come to senses by ‘striking him.’

Abigail (stage directions): Shielding her eyes…let out a gigantic scream. – The figurative imagery at first reveals and connotes to a powerful, yet cunning and weak personality. This is as, shielding can be interpreted as the power of protection Abigail possesses, and rules the court with it. However, it can also be interpreted, that Abigail needs to shield her eyes, to stop others being aware of her motives, meaning she is a cunning woman, with a weak personality, as she fears her being exposed can make her vulnerable. Also, the ‘gigantic scream’ is emotive and descriptive language, with imagery associated along with it to depict the power of Abigail over the court. However, a ‘scream’ connotes to a reaction of danger and fear, reiterating, that Abigail/immoral people always resort to weak methods of protection.

Proctor: ‘ A fire, a fire is burning! I hear the boot of Lucifer, I see his filthy face! And it is my face, and yours Danforth! For them that quail to bring men out of this ignorance, as I have quailed, and as you quail now when you know in all your black hearts that this be fraud – God damns our kind especially, and we will burn, we will burn together!’ – Repetition at the beginning and at the end of the text, in linked together, as both have exclamation marks and the figurative language of ‘fire’ leading up to ‘burning’ highlights the eventual downfall of society. Although the whole text can be seen as blasphemous, Miller has intended to make it blasphemous to the Puritan audience causing extreme reactions from them; however, we understand that the exclamatory emotive language, seen by the exclamation marks, signifies the fury of innocent people, when they are confronted by the corrupted religion. The imagery and connotations used in ‘boot of Lucifer’, suggests how that era has been degraded, and will fully degrade, as immorality (Lucifer) continues. The alliteration and imagery in ‘filthy face’ connotes to the degraded motives and intentions of people, which slowly impacts on everyone; when he says ‘my face and yours Danforth!’ it’s his fury and foreboding, of this corruption affecting everyone, even a minister/ a priest who may have a high position in society. The emotive and archaic language used in ‘quail’ with tenses, signifies a strenuous pain people have suffered in bringing morality, is a powerful archaic word, which can connote to a part of an inspirational speech. The imagery of ‘black hearts’ can be interpreted as the height of his anger, as he rightly points out the Puritans’ dark nature, as a result of their destructive austere/strict lifestyle, which has suppressed their emotions. The declarative ‘God damns our kind especially’, with a superlative effect, gives the historical background of how the strict and contradicting lifestyle of Puritanism was emotionless, (emotions are a core part of Christianity) caused God/nature to continually reject them, and as their false religion continued, God ‘especially’ has damned them.

Proctor: ‘You are pulling Heaven down and raising up a whore!’ – The metaphor used, can be accepted as a symbol of literal truth, as the heaven symbolises true religion which is corrupted by the ignorance, superstition and stupidity of people, using it as an excuse for their misdeeds. ‘Raising up a whore!’ is exclamatory, and refers to Abigail; also, ‘whore’ can connote to the decline of society, which is seen in prostitution etc., and this corruption is causing it.



Act 3 Segment 1: “When Proctor realises that Goody Proctor is pregnant” by Darshan

Character and Action:

Characters (and what they are doing in this segment):

  • Parris: Tries to encourage Danforth that Proctor is uprising the court
  • Hale: Helping Proctor with his charge, trying to bring reasoning
  • Danforth: Very stubborn, will not make a final decision
  • Proctor: Trying to prove that the girls are only acting, and the women accused are innocent
  • Giles: Assisting Proctor with his charge by persuading Danforth
  • Mary: Helping Proctor prove the girls are fake, but she’s helping against her will
  • Cheever: providing some evidence about Goody Proctor’s charge
  • Hathorne: Very small amount spoken; only assisting Danforth
  • Herrick: Court Marshal who listens to Danforth’s orders
  • Francis: Also helping Proctor with his charge, proving Goody Nurse is innocent

Plot (action):

  • In the courtroom
  • Proctor is defending Goody Proctor and all the other women accused by proving them innocent
  • Proctor is also trying to prove that the girls are only acting and that their whole drama is false. This is done by Mary Warren claiming that it all were “pretence”
  • Proctor realises that his wife is pregnant, which prevents her from being hanged for another year.
  • However, Proctor does not drop the charge because he wants all the other women to not be killed as well.

Themes and Context:

Witchcraft: Very important theme in this act, as the whole court is revolved around these trials, which is why they were called the “witch trials”. There were no other cases that were held in this court, which shows how large this issue became.

Power: In this segment, Danforth sustains his power throughout the whole part, as he is regarded as the highest member of the Supreme Court. The reader can also see subtle hints of Danforth abusing this power throughout this segment. This is because no one else has this large amount of power in order to make decisions. We can also see Danforth’s power conveyed as he cuts off everybody in the middle of their sentence, which no one else does which shows that he is the only one with power.

Hysteria: The whole town orbits around hysteria and we can see this as they turn every little issue into large problems. This is because 16th Century Puritans had no form of enjoyment, so whenever a little issue is brought up, it allows them to have some fun. Even Danforth believes in this hysteria because he believes in the girls’ spectacle.

Revenge: Even though this theme cannot be seen, it can be said that Proctor is seeking revenge on Abigail because she accused Elizabeth that she is a witch.

Context: We can see that this does relate back to the McCarthy era because many innocent people must have been accused as communists and taken away to be eliminated. Therefore, Miller reflects on this context to show to the contemporary reader about this era.

Language/Structure and Effects:

“We burn a hot fire here; it melts down all concealment.”

This metaphor indicates that the court do not accept any liars and anything hidden. The use of the words Danforth has spoken has been chosen carefully by Miller as “burn”, “hot”, “fire” and “melt” all connote back to a fire, which is usually considered as negative. This shows that Danforth is an evil person with the power he retains.

“Plough on Sunday!”

Also spoken by Danforth, this shows how ridiculous 16th Century beliefs were because of this quote. Danforth was absolutely shocked when he heard that Proctor did not go church on Sunday and instead, he ploughed. Miller is trying to show here how hysteric Puritans’ views were at the time.

“The pure in heart need no lawyers.”

Yet again spoken by Danforth, he describes how honest people do not need any help. He said this to Proctor; therefore we can understand that Danforth is assuming that Proctor is a very truthful man, one who is not a liar. So, the reader can see that Danforth is not so cruel and heartless.

“I judge nothing… Do you understand my meaning?”

This is all one quote in a form of a mini soliloquy. It is spoken by Danforth, and we can see, yet again, he is the most dominant character in this part because he is able to deliver these monologues, whereas others can’t even get a word in edgeways. Therefore, Danforth is the most powerful and important character in this segment and this can be seen by many things throughout this post.

Act Two – segment 3 ‘Elizabeth is accused’ by Simran and Misha

Character and Action

  • It is dark
  • Hale depends Elizabeth
  • Cheever believes purely on the evidence

“Tis hard proof!” page 61

  • Proctor seems threatening

“I hope you’re not taking this for proof, Mister!”

  • No violence is shown
  • Proctor gets defensive towards Elizabeth
  • Proctor gets angry towards the people in the house e.g. Cheever, Hale, Marry, Elizabeth

Themes and context


  1. Hale slowly loses power
  2. Proctors lose power


  1. Hale’s status lowers as he loses control over the accused
  2. Proctor’s status lowers as his wife is accused
  3. Mary’s status lowers as she is accused
  4. Cheever’s status increases as he gets the accused

Language and Structure

Archaic (old)


Double negative

Religious – “Pontius Pilate! God will not let you wash your hands of this!”  (Jesus was taken by the court)

Metaphors – “You are a broken minister”    (John Proctor says this to Hale)

Simile – “I will fall like an ocean on that court!”    (shows their passion for each other)

Inversion – “I tell you true”

Colloquial language – “What meanin’ has it?”

“I hope you’re not takin’ this for proof, Mister!”

Act 2 – Segment 1 ‘Conversation between John Proctor and Elizabeth Proctor’ by Saudah and Prem

Character and Action:

  • John & Elizabeth do not spend time with each other
  • They have cold conversations with each other which eventually turns into an argument.
  • John starts to be sarcastic when he adds salt to the food Elizabeth made him which shows he is complimenting himself.
  • Talk of Abigail Williams makes him angry and he feels as if Elizabeth doesn’t want to let go.
  • He upsets her. As it is their relationship is cold and there are a lot of silences between one another – this shows that awkwardness of their relationship.
  • She receives it with a certain disappointment (cold relationship) → (blushing with pleasure) → shows that she loves him.
  • Characters:
  • Elizabeth Proctor
  • John Proctor
  • Mary warren

Themes and context:

  • Status – Proctor calls her ‘Woman’ when they ague also links with power. -How dare you question me woman?
  • Status + Power – John Proctor
  • Proctor cuts Elizabeth off ‘I have no – ‘   representing power once again.
  • Status- I’ll not have your suspicion any more’ – demands her.

Language/structure and effects:

  • Archaic – ‘I were planting for out to the forest edge’ – Aye. The word ‘aye’ represents how they spoke back in the day, and how that language has changed throughout as now instead of aye people say yes.
  • Clipping – Droppin’, Dewitchin’, ‘She’s weepin’! – clipping shows that what time they were in and they used to always drop a letter for example the ‘g’ and the end of words and how the pronunciation was like then.
  • Religion – ‘pray god’, ‘I would to go she were’
  • I am sick, ‘I am sick… pray, pray hurt me not’ – believe that god looks after them.
  • Foreshadowing – ‘it’s a fair poppet – poppet (hysteria) seen as part of witchcraft. Miller created foreshadowing in this play to give us an idea of something later on to happen in the play.