Between The Devil And The Deep Sea

Come Act-2 of "The Crucible", Mr. John Proctor is faced with a dilemma - confessing his infidelity with 17 year-old Abigail to his wife Elizabeth amongst others, or- keeping his secret and risking the execution of his wife Elizabeth to accusations thrown at her by Abigail who believes she's been meddling with the occult.

I find John's predicament to be an interesting one.

If he were to confess, he would be the black sheep of his town (possibly even face death) but possibly save his wife's life because Abigail's true character would be revealed- a conniving, selfish girl who wanted him all to herself and wanted Elizabeth out of the way. If he kept silence he'd lose his wife, his standing in society (owing to the fact that he's already been under suspicion of being "ungodly" and "non-christian virtues") he'd forever be labelled a man who let his wife dabbel with the occult.

If I was Proctor, I would come clean about my adultery. Not because I'm an enigmatic torch-bearer or a dispenser of truth and justice, but because I'd rather be accused of being an infidel at the time than deny having anything to do with witchcraft and get hung anyway- and all based on the sole word of a 17 year old whom I possibly detest dearly.

despite harsh Puritan laws against Infidelity, Proctor could weasel his way around the act saying that Abigail was a temptress and a seducer or that she was the devil herself- luring men into her wicked ways (A compelling argument for a justification of his impure ways) John's character within the first half of the play already seems to be of that of a rebel in the church. A bad-ass. I'd say he'd have nothing to lose and all to gain if he came clean.

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