Act 1: segment 6 –‘When Abigail and the girls accuse people they dislike of witchcraft’ by Kishan M and Saqib

Character and action:

  • Reverend Hale
  • Giles Cory
  • Reverend Parris
  • Abigail Williams
  • Mrs Putnam
  • Tituba
  • Betty
  • Reverend Parris admits he saw Abigail and the girls dancing in the forest.
  • Abigail blames Tituba for the witchcraft.
  • Tituba confesses as this is the only way she can live.
  • Tituba goes on to blaming people she disliked as this is the first time she has power.
  • Abigail’s jealous of the power Tituba gains so she confesses to witchcraft as well so she can have the power as well.
  • Abigail then goes mad with the power and accuses lots of people she dislikes and the girls follower her and copy what she is doing.

Themes and context:

Witchcraft– when Tituba confesses to witchcraft and compacting with the devil which leads to Abigail confessing.

Power- when Abigail and Tituba confess to witchcraft they gain a lot of power which they didn’t have and accuse people they disliked.

Revenge- Abigail, Tituba and the girls blame people they dislike of witchcraft so this way they can get back on them and get their revenge.

In context girls in the 1900s did not have any power it was usually the males that had the power. So at the point where Abigail and Tituba confess and gain power they go mad with it because this is the first time they had the feeling to know what having power felt like and is their first encounter with having power.

Language:

Metaphor – ‘you are god’s instrument put in our hands to discover the devils agents amongst us’.

This quote tells the reader that now that Tituba has confessed  of being a witch, he and everyone else will treat her better because they want to get the names of the other people to blame upon. This shows that the 16th century puritans were selfish because before they beat her up and now they are calling her ‘God’s instrument’.

Simile – ‘The devil is out and preying on her like a beast upon the flesh of the pure lamb’.

This quote tells the reader that Tituba is being guilt tripped because she won’t tell the names of the people to blame.

Double negative I don’t compact with no devil’

This quote tells the reader that language is archaic and today this would mean that you would compact with the devil.

Rule of 3 – ‘a mouse, perhaps, a spider, a frog?’

This quote tells the readers that hale was trying to get as much information out of Reverend Paris as possible.   

ACT ONE: Segment 4 -‘Gah! I’d almost forgot how strong you are, John Proctor!’ by Namrata

Characters and action:-

Between Abigail and John proctor.

  • Abigail and John are together.
  • They are alone outside together.
  • Abigail trying to show affection for John.
  • John is telling her to go away, afraid he might get caught by someone nearby.
  • ‘Gah I’d almost forgot how strong you are, John Proctor!’- Abigail sounds quite desperate.
  • She’s jealous that Proctor actually falls to his knees to his wife and he doesn’t for Abigail
  • Abigail starts to feel comfortable around him
  • John calls her child and she gets angry as she likes him and he calls her child- makes her more frustrated.

Themes and context:-

Power– Abigail thinks she has power over John Proctor and thinks she can get him to fall in love with her. John however tries to drift away from her and makes her cry, showing that he has also become quite masculine and shows power to Abigail.

Jealousy– Abigail is jealous that he is married to Elizabeth. Abigail calls Elizabeth cold, snivelling and she is jealous for the fact that he bends to her, which means that Abigail is jealous their relationship is still lasting and they are still together, no matter what.

Status– John Proctor has high status in the society; he says no to Abigail whenever she comes near as he knows he will lose his status in the society of being a proud man when his will get blamed for adultery.

Society – affairs are presented, for example- Abigail and John. Comparing to today’s society, they are quite similar as many people do have affairs when they are in a relationship.

Love– Abigail and John feel affection for each other. But John can hang on for too long as she might tell everyone or someone might find out. However the fact that they feel comfortable around each other, when they are together tells us that they may have had an affair for quite a long time. ‘Heat’-this tells us that passion was growing between them both.

Language / structure and effects:-

‘You sweated like a stallion whenever I come near’
Language- simile – stallion is quite a strong animal the sibilance in ‘s’ makes the quote sound more seductive.
Effect on the reader- the reader is now aware of the affair and Abigail had become more bold and dangerous.
Themes and context- sexualised, immoral lust and betrayal.

‘I will cut my hand before I reach for you again’
Language- shows an aggressive determination. Forceful and masculine language.
Effect on the reader- he is presented as a firm man, and we start to admire him.
Themes and context- shows a man who wants to redeem his sins.

‘I’ll not be comin’ for you more’
This quote tells us that he is starting to hate Abigail. She is not important to her anymore.
Comin’- here the technique inversion is used and it is also colloquial.

‘speak nothing of Elizabeth’
John is getting defensive toward Elizabeth he is starting to dislike anyone that says anything about her.

 

 

 

Act 1 – Segment 3 ‘When the girls have a conversation about the incident’ By Vaishali

CHARACTER AND ACTION

CHARACTERS:

  • Abigail
  • Mercy
  • Mary
  • Betty – ‘seventeen, subservient naïve, lonely girl’

ACTION:

  • The girls question about what’s wrong with Ruth and Betty
  • Abigail tell the girls that she has told her uncle Parris
  • Abigail wakes Betty
  • Betty blames Abigail and tells the girls about what she did and tries to fly then collapses again
  • Abigail threatens the girls and tells them not to tell anyone a word

THEMES AND CONTEXT

WITCHCRAFT

Mary: “They’ll be callin’ us witches” – This quote refers to Mary saying that the people of Salem will be calling them witches. This shows to the readers that if anyone was caught dancing in the woods just like the girls were they’d be called witches.

Mary: “Witchery’s a hangin’ error”– in this quote we see that Mary says witchery’s a hanging error. This indicates that to be a witch or compact with the devil in any way was a big mistake and that it could lead to people being hanged. As Arthur Miller writes a hangin’ error instead of a huge mistake, this shows that it was even worse than just a mistake and lead to serious consequences such as being hanged.

Betty: “You drank blood…You drank a charm to kill Goody Proctor”– This quote clearly is linked to witchcraft. As that is what witches would do and it was believed that witches drank blood and charmed people. Betty blames Abigail and says she drank a charm to kill Goody Proctor. At once the girls are surprised and Abigail becomes furious as Betty tries to accuse her of being a witch. Abigail slaps Betty as she knows that if the town people or anyone found out she would be in big trouble!

POWER ANS STATUS

Abigail: “And you know I can do it…I can make you wish you had never seen the sun go down!”– This quote shows that Abigail had a lot of power and authority over the girls and that if she wanted to she could do anything to them to an extent such as kill them. As Abigail says I can twice it shows that she had the status & power to control and do what she wanted. Abigail warns the girls and the girls are immediately quite which shows Abigail had full control over them.

REVENGE:

Betty: “You drank a charm to kill John Proctors Wife”– We have seen that Abigail hates Elizabeth and whenever she hears her name she becomes angry and more vicious. Abigail slaps Betty across the face as soon as Betty speaks this. The readers may be convinced and believe this that Abigail may have drank a charm to kill John Proctor’s wife as she wanted revenge from her and also Abigail hated Elizabeth and wanted her out of the way so she could then have John, which is why she may have drank a charm. However as a modern audience we knew that they had only danced and that they never conjured with the devil. They were just being young girls and fooling around which makes us think that Abigail did not do such a thing.

LANGUAGE/STRUCTURE & EFFECTS

CLIPPING: “Have you tried beatin’ her?”

                     “He’ll be comin’ up

Religious: “Oh Jesus” – Even when the girls are speaking to each other as friends they use religious language which shows religion was part of their language and when they speak they’d use such words. However it can also show that they are going to be in trouble now and they remember god. Like if we do something wrong and are going to be in trouble we remember god.

Alliteration: “I’ll beat you betty”

Archaic: “What ails you betty?” – Shows that old language that they used to use. As she says what ails you Betty which we as a modern people would not say instead we would say something like what’s wrong with you?

Simile: “Walk like a dead one”

Double Negative: “dead and buried”

Imperative: “Listen now”

                       “Now look you” – Shows power and status.

Interrogatives: “What’s got her?”

                             “Oh you’re a great one for looking aren’t you, Mary Warren?”

                             “What’ll we do?” – They are all confused and question everything.

Repetition: “Mama, Mama”

                      “You did, you did”

                      “Shut it, now shut it” – shows the tension between Abigail and Betty.

 

Act 1: segment 1 – ‘Parris & Abigail discuss the rumours’ by Priyanka

Character and Action:

  • Tituba, Reverend Parris, Abigail Williams and Susanna Walcott
  • Parris is upset and praying that Betty wakes up.
  • Tituba asks if Betty will be okay and he responds very angrily.
  • Abigail enters with Susanna, who has come with news from the doctor.
  • Susanna tells Parris that the doctor cannot find a cure for Betty and so he should consider looking for spiritual reasons.
  • Parris tells Susanna to not tell anyone about any of this.
  • Abigail tells Parris that there are rumours of witchcraft and that a crowd has already gathered downstairs.
  • Parris gets angry at Abigail as he believes she’s not telling him the truth about what happened in the forest.
  • Abigail says they were dancing and that was it.
  • Parris disagrees and says he seen a dress on the floor and he cannot remove what he saw.
  • Abigail begins to get scared and denies that anyone was naked.
  • Parris says Abigail’s name is clean in the village and she wouldn’t want to ruin that.
  • He begins to question her on why Goody Proctor let Abigail go.
  • Abigail getting very angry at the mention of Goody Proctor defends herself and says she was let go due to the fact she didn’t want to be a slave. She says she will not let Goody Proctor ruin her name.

Themes and Context:

Power and Status

This is seen through Parris as when he is pushing Abigail to tell the truth, he always mentions that if the truth comes out before he knows himself his name will be ruined and he also frequently says he has many enemies that want to ruin his name in the village.

This can also be seen through Abigail’s character, as when Parris mentions Goody Proctor, Abigail gets very angry and says she refuses to let her name be ruined by Goody Proctor.

Hysteria

Hysteria can be seen very early in the play as Abigail tells Parris that a crowd has already gathered downstairs. This shows how the 16th century Puritans had very dull lives as at the mention of something different they all get involved. It tells the audience that any little thing among the ordinary would have caused a frenzy.

Language and Structure:

‘Oh, my God! God help me!’ (Parris)

Religious language – shows how the Puritans related everything they did to God and how they were very narrow minded in the way they thought as they had to always refer to God.

‘Betty. Child. Dear child.’ (Parris)

Short sentence – used for dramatic effect on the reader. The short sentence makes you read it quicker and therefore gives the effect of how Parris was saying it. It portrays that he was very nervous and very scared for Betty as he was unaware of what was wrong with her.

‘searchin’’ (Susanna)

Clipping/ colloquialism – show the way in which the Puritans spoke. Also, as this is said by Susanna who is young it may show how they young Puritans spoke almost as slang.

‘And what shall I say to them? That my daughter and my niece I discovered dancing like heathen in the forest? (Parris)

Rhetorical question – the effect of this may be sarcasm as he is asking Abigail a question in which he clearly knows the answer of. It also involves the reader as they may question what they may do if they were in Reverend Parris’ situation.