Justice and Injustice in The Crucible by Arthur Miller
In The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, justice and injustice is portrayed through the characters of John Proctor, Elizabeth Proctor and Abigail Williams. It is also shown through the minor characters of Mary Warren and Mercy Lewis, followers of Abigail Williams, and through Danforth and various townspeople.
After Abigail Williams and the girls are discovered dancing in the forest by Reverend Parris, there are rumours of witchcraft among them, when Betty Parris and Ruth Putnam are found "witched". Once the girls discover this, they become more and more frightened of being accused of witchcraft. Abigail is the first to "admit" to seeing the devil, and all the other girls join in, so the blame will not be placed on them. "I saw Sarah Good with the Devil. I saw Goody Osburn with the Devil. I saw Bridget Bishop with the Devil."
Once the accusations began, many innocent people in the community were taken away. They were then either forced to admit that they were witches, to free themselves from a public hanging, or deny that they were witches, saving their integrity, but subjecting themselves to an unjust public hanging.
One of the first people to be charged, was Rebecca Nurse, wife of Francis Nurse, a well-respected man of the community. This disturbance caused great anxiety amongst the people in Salem, as they would have least suspected Rebecca Nurse to be one to deal with the Devil. "If Rebecca Nurse be tainted, then nothing's left to stop the whole green world from burning." Goody Putnam was the one to accuse her of witchcraft, for the death of her seven babies, but even with no just proof, Rebecca Nurse is hanged for "sending her spirit out on them."
Wild accusations are flying between people in Salem. In the case of Martha Corey, Walcott accused Corey of witchcraft, to settle a score that had happened four or five years ago. Walcott claimed that after buying a pig from Corey, it died soon after that and "from that day to this he cannot keep a pig alive for more than four weeks."
Giles Corey, Martha Corey's husband, was later killed for a different reason. He refused to give the name of a man who heard Putnam say he was "killing his neighbours for their land." Giles Corey died an unjust death, great stones placed on his chest, pressing him slowly to death.
Any outrageous claims were taken in by the courts, and everyone had a reason to accuse another, resulting in many innocent deaths.
The main accuser, Abigail Williams, had an ulterior motive to destroy Elizabeth Proctor. Beforehand, Abigail had an affair with Elizabeth's husband, John Proctor, and Abigail believed if she removed Elizabeth, she would have John to herself. Most of Abigail's allegations were based on false claims, believing the relationship between her and John Proctor to be true love.
Because of Abigail's twisted plot of sticking a needle in herself to signify Elizabeth's "familiar spirit" pushing it in, and...