The Crucible is one of those plays written towards the former 50s of the last century that remains part of the academic curriculum at numerous universities & high schools throughout the United States of America. The question that commonly arise with relevance to the play are why did Arthur Miller write The Crucible and why does it remain as iconic play till this very day. The quest for those answers leads one to the reasons Arthur Miller wrote Crucible.
Writing of Miller’s Crucible
As an off spring of immigrants who were not only of Jewish ancestry but also of Polish descent, Arthur Miller started to feel the heat of the moment when the United States administration started a nationwide crackdown on individuals & covens that supported Communism under the direction of Sen. Joseph McCarthy. This particular phase in the history of the United States is referred to as either ‘The Red Scare’ or ‘McCarthyism’; a time when government initiated propaganda against Communism was at its zenith. The United States administration would blacklist and accuse anyone for the crime of supporting communism; with or without evidence.
The same fate befell the then thirty seven years old Arthur Miller who was condemned for disrespect & disapproval of the United States Congress for being unsuccessful in naming numerous individuals who had attended meetings with him. In a bid to not only secure his career as a journalist & play writer and also to alert the American people against the government misinformation & propaganda that were headed their way, Miller started to ink The Crucible. Using the ‘Salem Witch Trials’ of the early 1690s as a precinct, Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible. The characters in the play are faced with the same tragedies & sentences that befell people during the McCarthyism trials; he uses the ‘Salem Witch Trials’ as a metaphor to draw national attention towards the doings and executioners of the McCarthyism propaganda.