Personally, I found that Miller often made efforts to showcase peoples’ hypocrisy. I really enjoyed reading about how Proctor commits adultery with Abigail and not only denies it when talking to her young lover, but also openly denies it to his wife. Nevertheless, I found it lovely and even comical when Hale arrives to his and Elizabeth’s house after she is accused of witchcraft by Abigail. They fervently claim to be orthodox Christians that espouse every aspect of the dogma, but all this falls apart when John fails to remember all the ten commandments.
During of a really funny coincidence, he manages to forget the sin that says “thou shall not commit adultery” and his wife, whom he cheats on, reminds him of it. Here we see a lovely example of irony that I perhaps enjoyed waaaay too much. Nevertheless, I found that this motif is key both to the themes dealt with in the book, but also to the situation in American society he is criticizing.
Characters here very often take advantage of the rampant finger-pointing for their own twisted purposes, and evidently, we can see that the issue at hand isn’t truly witchcraft but personal grudges and the like. Didn’t that same thing happen duty McCarthyism? The most relevant case that comes to my mind is the example that Dr. Crawford alluded to in lecture, that of of McCarthy’s “bulldog” who violently persecuted homosexuals but was a closeted homosexual himself–a very ironic situation indeed.
I think that this is one of the important parts of Miller’s argument about the situation that this work is criticizing.