John Proctor

Tragic Hero “A man cannot become a hero until he sees the root of his own downfall. ” This famous quote from Aristotle highlights one of the main reasons that tragedies were created; to point out the flaws of a society to learn from them. John Proctor, from the tragedy The Crucible by Arthur Miller, is a prime example Of a “tragic hero”. He starts off the play as a respected and successful farmer whose main focus is himself above all else.

While the Salem Witch trials highlight this flaw, hey also give John the opportunity to overcome it and prove to the world that he is Willing to put Others before himself, making his eventual death the tragic event it is meant to be. John Proctor is the tragic hero of The Crucible because he is destroyed at the end of the play, he makes on last attempt to restore his lost greatness, and he evokes the audience to experience catharsis towards him.

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The hero-like characteristics of John Proctor make him the tragic hero because he is killed at the end of the play, he attempts to earn the respect of his wife, and sakes the audience feel pity for him. The first reason why John Proctor sis tragic hero is the fact that he dies at the end of the play, He stands up to the court and sacrifices is his elite: “He have his goodness now. God forbid take it from him” (Miller 887). As a result of his choice to not confess to witchcraft, john is sentenced to hang, ultimately defeating him.

Another reason as to why John Proctor is a tragic hero is because he makes one last attempt to regain his lost honor. Elizabeth, John’s wife, allows him to make the final decision whether or not to confess to witchcraft, and John will not confess to a crime he did not commit: ‘”You have magic now, for now do think I see some shred of goodness in John Proctor” (Miller 886). John does not want the court to make an example out of him, and by not giving in to the lie, John regains some of the respect that he had loss. His last characteristic of a tragic hero is how he evokes the audience to experience catharsis towards him.

The true moment of catharsis was at the end Of the play when John Proctor tore up the confession and allowed the self sacrifice of him: “Proctor tears the paper and crumples it” (Miller 886). Because of his sacrifice, Proctor became an example Of good Will and purity for Others to follow. Therefore, the townsfolk have realized themselves that there is hope for redemption of their sins. John Proctor is the tragic hero because he succumbs to death, fights to regain his lost honor, and affects the audience emotionally.


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