The Crucible, by Arthur Miller

Key characters and themes in The Crucible, for those studying GCSE English Literature AQA. 

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Characters - John Proctor

- although some criticise his religious commitment, he is generally respected for his intergrity and holds a good reputation in Salem

- guilt ridden, self-depricating, complex protagonist, honest & independent, desperate for redemption, distrustful of authority

- the most understandable and relatable character in the play 

- context strong connection between his situation in the play and Arthur Miller's in the anti-Communist hearings he was brought before

- he represents common sense and decency. He is not perfect and is very aware of his own faults, and is his own harshest judge (Elizabeth to John - "the magistrate sits in your heart that judges you") 

- under strain in the play when dealing with the struggle inside him between truth and reputation 

- "How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul; leave me my name!" 

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