Tell the children - Sample Essay
Also in the act two stage directions, proctor is mention to have tested his wife’s cooking which is set out in the kitchen whilst Elizabeth herself is still upstairs. After testing it with the ladle it comes across to the audience that he is ‘not quite pleased’ so he adds his touch by adding extra seasoning. He does this without consulting his wife, due to the fact he wouldn’t want to confront her about it encase of upsetting her, but needs his dinner still to be up to his standards.
Also he knows it’s the wife role to do the cooking and intruding on that s not the right thing to do. When sat at the table, he compliments her cooking ‘it’s well seasoned’ this makes her ‘blush with pleasure’. She is glad she has pleased him; it really means something to her. This shows us the first piece of intimacy they have between them in this act and it means a lot to them both after all that’s happened.
The conversation throughout the first few pages of the play can be seen to be about general things such as the weather and cooking. This may not seem intimate but any conversation between them is considered important. On the subject of weather proctor says ‘pray now for a fair summer’ this showing that they have a future and proctor is proving that they will be sharing the next summer together. Elizabeth replies bye saying ‘aye’ dismissing such an idea of them being together, as the idea of him having an affair still lingers in the back of her mind. Later on after the conversation has ended Proctor then ‘gets up, goes to her kisses her.
She receives it. With a certain disappointment, he returns to the table.’ This shows how little effort Elizabeth has put in to it and how motionless she feels. At this stage in the play it just shows the audience how opposite they are, as john is the one who is trying to do every little thing to please her by making conversation at the table and complimenting her at every moment possible and on the other hand there’s Elizabeth who doesn’t give anything back to him. This just shows the real coldness she is feeling towards him, and Miller really puts that forward by showing such a paranoid and insecure women who wants to show proctor just how much this has actually affected her, so he is the one feeling guilty and sorry for all the past damage he has caused.
Proctor later tries to change the subject to make it less awkward after Elizabeth received the kiss in such disappointment. He speaks as gently as he can to Elizabeth ‘Cider?’ He says this in such way trying not to offend his wife as he knows it’s her role to do such a thing as pour out the cider. This makes Elizabeth think about it must have been her fault he had an affair because her role as a wife just wasn’t good enough for him so he wanted to move on to someone else. Its extremely sad that she thinks like this as it wasn’t her fault and blaming herself for what her husband did is not the right way to go about it.
From the start of act two the conversation between the couple can be seen by the audience as uncomfortable, however this you can see change as the act progresses through. First by discussing the witch trials which obviously brings up the subject of Abigail which relates to hers and proctors affair. This starts an argument as John had been to see Abigail herself a few days back, this concerning Elizabeth and effects her tremendously seeing as though she had not been told sooner and shows the audience how there relationship has gone from bad to worse, being so upset and starting to raise her voice, showing no hope for there marriage now.
At this point proctor is fed up with Elizabeth’s suspicions as he hasn’t even committed anything bad since the affair between him and Abigail. ‘ I have not moved form there to there without I think to please you, and still an everlasting funeral marches around your heart’ what he has said he, you can really tell his anger has got the better side of his, and turning nasty and vicious towards Elizabeth almost in a defensive manner. This is seen as rather unfair as she has the reason for judging him. She speaks ‘ the magistrate that sits in your heart that judges you’ This shows us that it is actually him that is judging himself due to the guilt and pressure he is feeling and has nothing to do with what Elizabeth says. Here we can see Miller presents them both really trying to get to each other.
Soon after Mar warren, their servant comes into the room, and tells them about what she has said during court. After hearing the new Elizabeth seems to get quite panicky and frantic but proctor steps in to reassure her, changing his mood from an hurtful argument to being caring and there for his wife. This shows a real change in there relationship in such a short space of time. Gradually getting to the end of Act tow the audience are shown a few dramatic things which shows how much Elizabeth really means to him, such as when she is taken from her home into Salem, john argues continuously and puts up a real fight and refuses to let them take her away from him and there children at first but then once told to rip up the warrant a very important document to him, he does this showing how far he will go to stay and be with his wife Elizabeth. Yet after a while John realises there just isn’t anything else he can do and they both accept the fact she has to leave, but his aggression really shows once he finds out they will be chaining her.
‘Damn you, man, you will not chain her! Off with them! I’ll not have it! I will not have her chained!’ In what he is saying you can see he is really repetitive showing how much he really cares, and the fact he just won’t let her go that easily as he is the one who should be protecting her, doing his role as a husband and a hero in her eyes but she may be finding it difficult under the circumstances because of what’s happened so it may not bother that it effects there relationship her as much as it does him. He now feels such guilt, because he knows it all his fault she has been taken away and accused affecting there relationship between each other.
Act tow in Millers play, really shows us how Elizabeth’s and proctors relationship changes so much, but this continues as we go on. Elizabeth is seen to have said her last words to do with her children whilst being dragged away from her family and home ‘tell the children I have gone to visit someone sick’ this leaves the audience with the feeling she is still such a caring and loving women just like she was at the beginning of act two and proctor cant change that.
Now on to Act three were both John and Elizabeth both show how much they both mean to each other, realising they need to put each other before themselves. This takes place in court were first of all John Proctor admits he committed adultery with Abigail. He shows this in such a strong way seeing as the stage directions are so dramatic and really take the audience to the edge of there seats. The way he admitted to the crime really shows that he wanted to tell the truth to stop his wife getting hung, even though doing such a thing would affect his future and his reputation.