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Compare and Contrast The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Color Purple by Alice Walker - Book Report/Review Example

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Summary
The play "The Crucible" by Arthur Miller and the novel "The Color Purple" by Alice Walker are two examples of the masterpieces of the American Literature. Both the writers have beautifully discussed the prominent issues of their respective societies. The multiple themes of both the pieces of literature add depth to their work and aptly convey the meaning.
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Compare and Contrast The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Color Purple by Alice Walker
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Compare and Contrast The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Having spent the first part of the novel tracing the pernicious effects of the national-patriarchal- capitalist domination of personal and natural resources, Walker opens the second part with Nettie's moving tributes to the fabulous riches of African culture, read as a pan-national phenomenon. The crucible, as we all know, is a container made of a substance that can resist great heat. It is also a severe test or trial which is intended to reveal the true morality of an individual. The religious significance of the title becomes self evident as we see that the protagonist, John Proctor, refuses to conform to the Puritan laws of the church to uphold his integrity. The Crucible also appears to be a test for the people of Salem. It tests the support of the people towards their religion (Summaries and Commentaries, n.d.). In contrast to which, "The Color Purple" becomes a symbol of an unconventional approach towards religion. Celie is able to shun away her conventional approach and adopts a more liberal approach. She finds beauty and spiritual solace in all the creations of God. Alice Walker puts this philosophy in the mouth of Shug as she says, it "pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field.and don't notice it."
The characters(The Color Purple by Alice Walker, 2005).
The characters of both the literary pieces are found similar in their approach towards religion. The last half of the novel, after Nettie's letters are discovered, traces how the characters' departure from formal alliances-based on race, organized religion, politics-takes the form of a nationalist aesthetic that places essences (human and inhuman) in their proper social relation regardless of apparent material conditions and contradictions. Capitalism, as we shall see, is no longer a hegemonic and mystified mode of exploitation; rather, it becomes an extension of the subject's spiritual choices. Arthur Miller bases his play, The Crucible, on the Puritan concept of religion. The Puritans lived in a very restricted environment. Their society was based on religious intolerance. Government and religious authorities were inseparable and questioning the local authority was considered equal to questioning God. They had their own strict doctrines and strict adherence to them was a must for every follower. Material and sexual desires were considered as the works of devil and a threat to society. The Crucible is based on one such Puritan society of Salem where the inhabitants were cowed into following their religious doctrines. Miller skillfully constructs the plot of his play and highlights the negative aspects of strict adherence to religion as is found in the Salem society. The people of Salem are found to be nurturing sexual and material desires. However, they are forbidden to openly discuss them. The protagonist of the play, John Proctor, is found guilty of incest. Abigail, his former maid, discloses his relationship with her. A society where religion is supposed to be followed strictly to nurture good is infact breading evil in all its forms. The 'unseen' scene in the woods takes place before the ... Read More
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