Miller is distinguished by sharp social vision and an active civic position. At the heart of his play is the trial of the "witches" in 1692 in Salem. The content of the play was a process over the farmer John Proctor and his wife Elizabeth, who was prey to the manslaughter of the maid Abigail, in love with Proctor. In the atmosphere of religious hysteria, John Proctor discovers moral courage and a sense of dignity.
A multifaceted and complex work, based on historical events, is striking in its frankness. Human voices are exposed; the person is depicted as is, without masks. Miller raised important and eternal questions of trust, lies, betrayal, selfishness. Dark hopelessness and injustice permeates the whole work, it is impossible to remain indifferent.
The terrible times were when the truth was on the side of those who shouted more convincingly and loudly, and justice was reduced to the formula "confess or be executed", "name names or you will be hanged", and «you either for this court or against it, the third one is not given». The choice among the people was small to save their lives, ruining others, and sometimes they did it deliberately for the sake of profit. Indeed, the possessed were in the role of judges. Even for a moment I do not doubt that in those days the courts passed exactly as Miller described. Fantasy is not able to draw something more inadequate, and if the courts are not so, then there would be no horror like that. In Salem, it all started with the strange behavior of a teenage girl, because of what was suspected that she was possessed by an evil spirit.
The plot line of the play shows that the revenge of a rejected woman can be truly insane. Abigail Williams accused half the city of worshiping the evil forces, well aware of the consequences for everyone, and only to return the man, John Proctor, who once was seduced by her, having betrayed his wife, which he later regretted.
In the center of the play are two strong female images: one woman at the cost of dozens of other people's lives wants to return a man, the other - at the cost of his own life trying to save a man. The central male image - John Proctor - is complex and can be the subject of a long discussion.
This would be a theater of the absurd, if meaningless executions did not occur in reality. What is happening is so terrible that it is impossible even to imagine that this was happening in reality, that people could reach such a thing. And this happened not only in the Salem.
Miller is distinguished by sharp social vision and an active civic position. At the heart of his play is the trial of the "witches" in 1692 in Salem. The content of the play was a process over the farmer John Proctor and his wife Elizabeth, who was prey to the manslaughter of the maid Abigail, in love with Proctor.