⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Arthur Miller Communist

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Arthur Miller Communist



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He then wrote a satirical piece called A Modest Proposal for the Pacification of the Public Temper , which denied that he supported the Communist cause. Nevertheless, he was called to appear before the House Un-American Activities Committee where, although his passport was conditionally restored, he nonetheless refused to give the names of people he had seen at Communist meetings. Because he refused to expose these people, Miller was found guilty of contempt of Congress in In his personal life, Miller married Mary Grace Slattery in ; in they were divorced.

In June he married Marilyn Monroe, the famous actress, and their marriage ended in Monroe subsequently committed suicide. In , Miller married to Ingeborg Morath, a photojournalist. He had four children, two each from his first and third marriages. As for the characters of the persons, little is known about most of them except what may be surmised from a few letters, the trial record, certain broadsides written at the time, and references to their conduct in sources of varying reliability.

They may therefore be taken as creations of my own, drawn to the best of my ability in conformity with their known behavior, except as indicated in the commentary I have written for this text. Miller clings to simultaneous claims of creative license and exactitude about the behavior and fate of the real people whose names he used for his characters. This is problematic for anyone who is beginning to take an interest in the historical episode, based on his powerful play.

In Miller's autobiography, Timebends: A Life , originally published in , Miller recounts another impression he had during his research:. One day, after several hours of reading at the Historical Society [ In one of them, a shaft of sepulchral light shoots down from a window high up in a vaulted room, falling upon the head of a judge whose face is blanched white, his long white beard hanging to his waist, arms raised in defensive horror as beneath him the covey of afflicted girls screams and claws at invisible tormentors. Dark and almost indistinguishable figures huddle on the periphery of the picture, but a few men can be made out, bearded like the judge, and shrinking back in pious outrage. Suddenly it became my memory of the dancing men in the synagogue on th Street as I had glimpsed them between my shielding fingers, the same chaos of bodily motion - in this picture, adults fleeing the sight of a supernatural event; in my memory, a happier but no less eerie circumstance - both scenes frighteningly attached to the long reins of God.

I knew instantly what the connection was: the moral intensity of the Jews and the clan's defensiveness against pollution from outside the ranks. Yes, I understood Salem in that flash; it was suddenly my own inheritance. I might not yet be able to work a play's shape out of this roiling mass of stuff, but it belonged to me now, and I felt I could begin circling around the space where a structure of my own could conceivably rise. There are no extant drawings by witnesses to the events in My best guess is that what Miller may have seen was a lithograph - popular framed wall art in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries - from a series produced in by George H.

Baker [See image to the right to compare with Miller's description. Although it is fine for artists to be inspired by whatever stimulates their creative sensibilities, Miller's descriptions of his own research, however credible they may come across and however vivid an imprint they may have left on him, are riddled with inaccuracies, and memories Miller claims to have had of the primary sources are seriously flawed. When the movie was released , Miller published an article in the New Yorker , discussing "Why I Wrote The Crucible", in which he describes, over four decades after writing the play, what he remembered of his process with the material.

He began by stating that he had read Salem Witchcraft : "[I]t was not until I read a book published in - a two-volume, thousand-page study by Charles W. Upham, who was then the mayor of Salem - that I knew I had to write about the period. It was from a report written by the Reverend Samuel Parris, who was one of the chief instigators of the witch-hunt. Immediately Abigail cried out her fingers, her fingers, her fingers burned By this time, I was sure, John Proctor had bedded Abigail, who had to be dismissed most likely to appease Elizabeth. In the introduction to his Collected Plays published in republished in the Viking Critical Library edition, p. I doubt I should ever have tempted agony by actually writing a play on the subject had I not come upon a single fact.

It was that Abigail Williams, the prime mover of the Salem hysteria, so far as the hysterical children were concerned, had a short time earlier been the house servant of the Proctors and now was crying out Elizabeth Proctor as a witch; but more - it was clear from the record that with entirely uncharacteristic fastidiousness she was refusing to include John Proctor, Elizabeth's husband, in her accusations despite the urgings of the prosecutors.

This is also not historically accurate, beginning with Abigail never having been a maidservant in the Procter household: that was Mary Warren. The real Abigail Williams did cry out against John Procter on April 4, on the same day Elizabeth Procter was formally accused, although he was not included on the arrest warrant issued on April 8. Miller continued to claim that it was a fact. He wrote, "I can't recall if it was the provincial governor's nephew or son who, with a college friend, came from Boston to watch the strange proceedings. Both boys burst out laughing at some absurd testimony: they were promptly jailed, and faced possible hanging. Miller is, of course, not alone in his personal interpretations about the history of this episode.

He was using it to make sense of his own life and times. Popular understandings include many general inaccuracies - for instance, that the witches were burned to death. People condemned as witches in New England were not burned, but hanged, and in the aftermath of the events in Salem, it was generally agreed that none of them had actually been witches at all. Some modern versions also cast the story as having to do with intolerance of difference - a theme that was in the words of Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel at the dedication of the Tercentenary Memorial in Salem in August , for instance - that the accused were people on the fringes that the community tacitly approved of casting out.

In fact, most of the people who were accused, convicted, and executed by the court in Salem were remarkable by their very adherence to community norms, many were even fully covenanted members of the church. Such impressions that vary from the historical facts are more likely to come from pressing concerns of the time of the writer. Another current understanding of the events had its beginning in , when Linnda P. Caporael, then a graduate student, published an article in Science magazine positing that the afflicted had suffered from hallucinations from eating moldy rye wheat - ergot poisoning.

The use and abuse of LSD was a major public concern at the time. The theory was refuted, point by point, by Nicholas P. Spanos and Jack Gottlieb seven months later in the very magazine Caporael had published her original article, demonstrating how Caporael's data was cherry-picked to support her conclusion. For instance, the kind of ergotism that produces hallucinations has other symptoms - gangrene fingers and digestive-tract distress - which would likely have been reported in , but were not.

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