However there are more then two sides to Proctor. He appears to be a character with a split personality. Whilst under the courts influence, Proctor is very polite towards Danforth; it is almost as if he is on his best behaviour. Though Danforth dismisses most of Proctor’s statements, Proctor does not react in the way he might have if it were another character. Proctor acting in Giles honour states, “Forgive him sir, for his old age. Peace, Giles, we’ll prove it all now.
” Although Danforth implies this is all a waste of time Proctor continues.
Proctor’s response is not as objective as it would have been if it were someone else he was talking to. This is because Proctor has visible respect for Danforth and is aware that he is under his authority. When Danforth cuts off Proctor’s speech, he reacts calmly, whereas if this had happened under normal everyday circumstances, he may have objected to the fact that he was not allowed to finish his sentence.
This shows that Proctor not only has respect for Danforth but also for the court, showing that he is in fact a decent man.
Also during this trial scene, Parris’ endless attempts at ‘blackening’ Proctor’s name to show the side of Proctor that he knows is pointless as Proctor remains civil and does not respond to him. Parris states in hope of an outrageous outburst, “He’s come to overthrow this court, Your Honour! ” Proctor simply ignores this accusation and continues with what he has come to the court to do.
Although ignoring Parris’ statement was probably hard Proctor managed to rise above his level. When Proctor makes his confession, Hale is surprised but still admires and believes in him. “By my oath to heaven, I believe him now.” This quote adds to the indication of Hale’s respect for Proctor, because he has outcasted himself knowing the consequences. Also Hale is strongly against Proctors execution and feels responsible because there is nothing he can do to stop it. Hale feels so strongly against the execution, that he feels himself to be Proctors murderer. “I would save your husband’s life for if he is taken I count myself his murderer. ” This conveys Hale’s opposition to the courts decisions. Parris’s reaction is the complete opposite of Hale’s. Parris seems extremely pleased; it is as if justice has been done in his eyes.
When accusations are made against Proctor, by Mary Warren (such as, “You’re the Devils man. “) Parris calls out ‘Praise God’ like it is something he had been trying to expose Proctor of since the beginning of the trial. Parris gives the impression of someone who has been trying to lead the town against Proctor and has now become successful. From these two very different reactions to Proctor’s confession it is clear that Proctor’s trial had more against him then for him. Hale who is an outsider had no successful input whereas Parris, who lives in the province and dislikes Proctor, is taken heed of.
Through John Proctor, Arthur miller has portrayed a character that is strong willed, not afraid to do his own thing, and is extremely brave. This relates to Miller’s comments on individuality because to be your own person these are just a few personal traits you need to have. In this essay I have explained Proctor’s relationship with the two ministers Hale and Parris and their suspicions of Proctor’s faith. To do this I have explained the relationship he has with them and their reactions to his confession in court.