Why is Proctor's Name So Important

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What do you get when you put two men in a room together who value their pride more than anything in the world , the answer to that is absolute chaos. Every situation has an alpha male just like wolf packs. In the play, “The Crucible,” Arthur Miller shows how John Proctor and Reverend Parris are similar yet different through ethos. Proctor a man of good self pride and Parris a man who has self pride but not for the right reasons.

John Proctor takes pride in his name as we could see in Act Four page One-Hundred and Fifty where John Proctor says “ Because it is my name! Because I can not have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name! I have given you my soul; leave me my name!” When John Proctor says that he has given his soul and to at least leave him his name is because he takes self pride in himself and his name. He wishes for his reputation to not become bad over a false confession. In the play reverend parris says “It is a weighty name” by that he meant that John Proctor's name had a good reputation and many people would believe him and what he would say, so when Judge Danford wanted his signature to finalize the false confession John Proctor reacted by saying that he will not give up his name even if it would mean that he would hang. John Proctor would be willing to give up his life for his name and to do that you must have a lot of self pride. Much like Reverend Parris who also prides himself , his name, and his reputation. When John Proctor refused to sign the paper that would end the trial and would also be his false confession, Reverend Parris was worried , anxious , angry because everything that Reverend Parris had done and started such as the trials, calling for out of town help , and also being one of the many reasons why so many people were executed and or arrested so after all those things happening would make his name would go down the gutter and ruin his reputation which he takes pride in such as his name. In the beginning of the play Reverend Parris says “Abigail, I have fought here three long years to bend these stiff-necked people to me, and now , just when some good respect is rising for me in the parrish , you compromise my very character.” When Reverend Parris said this he meant that after finally getting his name in a good respectable position all of it has been compromised due to abigail starting all the problems that we would end up seeing happening in town. Reverend Parris wants his name to be respected as we could also see when he said on page thirty “I am not some preaching farmer with a book under my arm; I am a graduate of Harvard.” When Reverend Parris said that he was a graduate of harvard he was letting everyone in the room know that he was a very well educated man and to not take him by as a regular dim man but to instead take him as the most educated person in the room. Which is why Reverend Parris feels some self pride because he unlike most others is very highly educated. Those are some reasons how John Proctor and Reverend Parris are similar when it comes to self pride.

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John Proctor likes having his name in a respectable place cause he likes that people respect him. Unlike Reverend Parris who wants respect for more authority and more say in things. John Proctor and Reverend Parris don't have good thoughts and opinions about each other which is very transparent when we see how they talk to each other. Such as in page thirty-two when Reverend Parris says “ What are we quakers? We are not quakers here yet, Mr. Proctor. And you may tell that to your followers!” John Proctor responds by saying “My followers!” then Reverend Parris says “There is a party in this church. I am not blind; There is a faction and a party” then John Proctor says “Against you?” Thomas Putnum interrupting Reverend Parris and John Proctor by saying “ Against him and all authority!” John Proctor afterwards saying “ Why, then I must find it and join it.” A room with two wolves and both trying to be the alpha male and the highest when it comes to having respect. Reverend Parris doesn’t care necessarily about his name but more about what other people think of him and where it puts him unlike John Proctor who would rather know his name is right even if he is the only one who knows it. John Proctor has shown many times that he cares more about the cause of things and everything being set right instead of him having a self benefit out of the situation. Reverend Parris on the contrary likes and would prefer to benefit out of the situation.

In conclusion John Proctor and Reverend Parris both show a way of having self pride even though some of that self pride is not for the right reasons we still see some sort of way how both Reverend Parris and John Proctor have respect toward their name and how they both try to have the most respect to be the alpha male is the situation. Arthur Miller did a good job at showing these things by using Ethos in the play “The Crucible” we have also seen how much John Proctor and Reverend Parris’s name is worth. To John Proctor his name is worth dying for , but to Reverend Parris his name is worth having as much authority and other people's respect. Either way we have learned in the play that both characters have self pride for themselves.

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Why is Proctor’s Name So Important. (2022, February 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 17, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/the-value-of-name-in-the-crucible/
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