Open Ended Miller’s portrayal of Puritanism indicates that the society in Salem chooses false religious values over logical assumptions, which suggest attributes of stubbornness and their wicked beliefs in The Crucible. This proves to be ironic because the society would rather prefer believing propaganda shoved by the religious figures of the community, Reverend Parris and Reverend Hale. These men of priesthood are considered to be completely holy, and they were exempt of any accusations of witchcraft, unlike almost everyone else in Salem.
For example, Reverend Hale states that “The man’s ordained; therefore the light of God is in him. ” (Hale, 66) Hale is referring to Reverend Parris, who in his eyes, was allowed to be overlooked as a victim of witchcraft because of his position in the religious society. He is said to be holy, but he is really lacking in his religious responsibilities by refusing to comfort the town when there was a commotion about the witchcraft. Parris was more concerned about his image and not being accused of witchcraft himself.
Reverend Hale is also not accused of witchcraft because he is supposedly holy and in everyone else’s eyes, cannot say anything wrong. This is where discrepancies began, because the community put their full trust in Hale, when in reality he could be wrong about witchcraft himself. He is called to Salem in the first place because of his knowledge of the Devil, yet he is never accused of speaking of the Devil. How can he know so much about the Devil and there not be any suspicion at all that he has in fact associated with the Devil?
It is because of Salem’s strict Fundamentalist values portraying that any straying of the Bible even in the slightest is a sign of the Devil’s influence and they are immediately shunned from society. This is illogical in a sense that the members of Salem have no cold hard proof of witchcraft, but instead they believe in the Bible completely, and leave no room for explanations and other possible reasons for outlandish actions.
Works Cited: Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. New York: The Viking Press, 1971