Society today brings so much that is always so negative and misleading. There always needs to be a scapegoat for who did what and why they’re responsible. Hysteria is a huge component now and still played a role back then.
In The Crucible and in the story of Jackie Robinson, hysteria and hate are both their main key factors. Although the main topics aren’t exactly the same, The Crucible and the Jackie Robinson story are more similarly related to ways involving both hysteria and hate.
In the beginning, The Crucible first kicks off when a group of girls were found dancing around a fire in the forest. Tensions grew and and chaos erupted as rumors of witches and witchcraft were among the town. “Peace. It is a providence, and no great change; we are only what we always were, but naked now.” (Miller). This is explain by the fact of how everyone in the town is literally that weak minded and scared that even now logical was illogical.
People were fighting over absolutely anything and everything, which made things worse. Jealousy, vengeance, and attention overpowered the girls and they started to accuse the innocent of being witches. “We are what we always were in Salem, but now the little crazy children are jangling the keys of the kingdom, and common vengeance writes the law!” (Miller). The people that raised them and were practically family were now the enemy. For instance, many respectable townspeople like Giles Corey and Good Nurse were all sentenced to death due to other people’s suspicions.
There were many times that you clearly see that people were lying, and yet all because a group of girls were good at acting, innocent people were now the Devil. Due to the town’s hysteria, the consequences of being found guilty was death by hanging or being stoned. Many innocent lives were taken all because of a group’s accusations and greed for power. To this day, justice was never served.
In the Jackie Robinson story, Jackie was denied entry to an all white baseball team in 1946. Little did he know he, was going to be the topic of an unforgettable moment in, not just baseball history but sports history as a whole. Because racism was active, the white race entangled in hysteria; the black race was nothing, and it was looked down on and discriminated against.
Blacks had no rights and no real say in anything they wanted to do. Robinson didn’t care though. He was going to play baseball and that was that. No matter how many times his life was threatened, he was still going to pursue his passion. “I’m not concerned with your liking or disliking me… All I ask is that you respect me as a human being.” (Robinson) In 1945, Jackie played one season in the Negro Baseball League, traveling all over the Midwest with the Kansas City Monarchs, but greater challenges and achievements were in store for him. In 1947, Brooklyn Dodgers president Branch Rickey approached Jackie about joining the Brooklyn Dodgers. Finally a decision was issued; Branch Rickey gave him his big shot. He was finally going to do what he loved. As a result of the issued decision this sparked the passage of the letting negroes play in the league along with whites. Branch stating, “Baseball is like a poker game. Nobody wants to quit when he’s losing; nobody wants you to quit when you’re ahead.” (Branch 4). This sparked a different outlook and viewpoint amongst the league. Also, On Tuesday, April 15th, President Bill Clinton paid tribute to Jackie at Shea Stadium in New York in a special ceremony. In comparison to one another, hysteria can definitely overpower and overcome a specific group. With both the story and case one group specifically targeted another. Going off of color and or certain “actions” is what caused these incidents to drive everyone mad. Also, going off of some accusations or anyone’s likes or dislikes is totally unethical.
For instance, when Jackie Robinson was just trying to travel to each of his games to build his career, he received multiple death threats and threats to end his career all because he was black. Or, when John Proctor met Abigail in the middle of the woods to tell her to stop her charade in trying to trick the town and kill Elizabeth. She tormented John’s family life all because she wanted to be with John and get revenge of Elizabeth over being fired for having an affair with her husband. Both of these incidents also revealed hate. The towns girls portrayed their hatred by blaming the innocent, just as the white community portrayed hatred by denying desegregation in the baseball leagues. The Mass hysteria crowds and surrounds the societies that we once knew and that we now know today. Mass hysteria has no specific time period or frame. This can still happen today in our modern day society. We seen it back then and it can still continue to happen now.
The Crucible and Brown vs. Jackie Robinson story have their differences but have a strong connection in similarities involving hate, hysteria, and negative arousings.“There is prodigious fear in seeking loose spirits” (Miller) No matter how different or how similar, modern mass hysteria can affect everyone from the smallest cause to the greatest chain reactions in history. Both The Crucible and the Jackie Robinson story will remain some of the greatest mass hysteria cases of all time.