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Examing the paradoxes in The Crucible


In the Crucible a person's innocence comes from confessing their guilt.

In the crucible, the only way for them to save their lives is to confess to something they did not do. By confessing a lie they get their freedom. The freedom, however, comes at a cost and that cost is their good name.  They have to give up their good name to save the lives, but they lose their soul in the process. They may get to live, but how can they live with themselves

A paradox is when two things seem opposite, but in fact have a truth to it. It seems illogical that a person can be innocent from confessing their guilt. How can innocence come from confessing to a crime? However, in the Crucible the only way to save your life is to confess to something that you have not done. This situation is very ironic

They may get to live, but how can they live with themselves we see this when Proctor says "with a cry of his whole soul: Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul; leave me my name!" In this quote, we see that Proctor has lost everything, but the one thing that he has left is his name. It is something that he can pass on to his sons and that is something that he will not give up. He will not confess to being guilty to be seen as innocent


"And why not, if they must hang for denyin' it? There are them that will swear to anything before they'll hang; have you never thought of that?"

This quote shows that the people will confess to guilt so that they can live and be found innocent