Essay Sample on Arthur Miller creates tension in the first act
“Now look you. All of you. We danced. And Tituba conjured Ruth Putnam’s dead sisters. And that is all. (… ) I will come to you in the black of some terrible night and I will bring a pointy reckoning that will shudder you. (… ) I have seen some reddish work done at night, and I can make you wish you had never seen the sun go down! ” Abigail talks about Proctor’s wife, showing all her hate for her. “She is blackening my name in the village! She is telling lies about me!
She is a cold, snivelling woman, and you bend to her! ” For the reader, the exclamation marks add emphasis. But for the viewer of the play, they mean something is shouted, which adds to the tension. “The psalm! The psalm! She cannot bear to hear the Lord’s name! ” One of the parts which boosts the tension the most is when Betty and Abigail both start crying out names hysterically. They announce who have they seen the Devil with: “I saw Goody Hawkins with the Devil! ” “I saw Goody Bibber with the Devil!
” This scene is one of the most dramatic ones because the girls cleverly think of a way to seem innocent to the villagers’ eyes, sacrificing other people’s (their own neighbours’) lives. The scene in which Abigail accuses and betrays Tituba is also shocking, especially for Tituba herself, and the rest of the characters. “She made me do it! She made Betty do it! ” It is also shocking for the audience because people arrive to have a certain sympathy for Tituba as the play develops.
Another aspect that creates tension is the relationships between the characters. This aspect involves the things that the characters say about each other and the disagreements they have, that can be caused by envy, jealousness, money, land, etc. Some examples are: When Parris severely orders Abigail to leave the room. “Out of my sight! ” This can create tension because the audience and readers will start to think about what will Abigail do next. Another example is when Abigail talks about Proctor’s wife, Elizabeth.
“I will not work for such woman! ” “She is a cold, snivelling woman”. An important detail about this quote is that Abigail says this standing in front of Proctor. Tension rises, and the pace becomes quicker, because we don’t know how might Proctor react; as we have seen he is not too romantic when dealing with girls. But Abigail won’t give in, she still tries to make him want to go out with her again. “John – I am waiting for you every night. ” Proctor remains constant and is faithful to his wife. “Abby, I never give you hope to wait for me. ”
It could be said there is romantic tension because at this point we know that Abigail will, sooner or later, take her revenge some way. She wants proctor with her, and she will do anything to anything to reach her objective. In my opinion, Arthur Miller has achieved his goal. He has made a good combination of different techniques in order to create tension throughout the whole play. The changes between slow and quick pace made the tension even more emphasised, and the introductions of the characters calmed down the pace but, at the same, time created a mysterious atmosphere.