Friday, October 10, 2014

The Crucible Essay Assignment

Ideas for The Crucible Film Analysis and Essay Assignment

Consider incorporating a discussion of film analysis into the lesson below.  See link to other post on this website:

Responding to The Crucible--Essay Assessment

As you view the movie and read the text, consider the following.  Take notes.  The question below should be answered in essay form.

Two definitions of crucible are “a severe test” and “a situation in which concentrated forces interact to cause or influence change or development.”  In this play, characters in the Puritan community endure tests and change as a result.  Their tests can be defined in many ways—a test of faith, a test of loyalty, a test of love, a test of integrity, a test of responsibility, a test of “doing the right thing.”  Focus on one of the characters in the play and explain his/her individual “test.”  How does the character change throughout the play?  What are the key decisions/choices that your character makes as he/she confronts the “test”? How, in your opinion, does the character change?  What does the character learn?  Be specific in your response:

a. Define the test that your character faces.
b. Describe the character at the beginning of the play.  Be specific.  Support your description with actions and words of the character (characterization).  Find good quotes.  Cite page numbers in parentheses.
c. Describe and explain how the character changes throughout the play.  Cite key scenes.
d. What does the character ultimately learn from his/her test?
e. Describe the character's personality and insight(s) by the end of the play.  Be specific.
f. How did you feel about the character by the end of the play?  Be specific.  Elaborate.  Support your opinion with details and quotes.
g. Write about the types of "crucibles" or "tests" that people living today endure.
h. How are these modern tests similar to or different from the tests of the Puritan people?
i. What lessons about life do people today learn from their particular struggles?  Can struggles ever produce good results?
j. Are people living today really much different from Puritans in their struggles and aspirations/goals/dreams?  What do all people really need in life, whether they are from the past or the present?

Typed Final Draft of Crucible essay is due ________________.  Your essay should be at least two pages, double-spaced, MLA format, 12 point Times Roman font.  Your essay should answer all aspects of the prompt.  Your essay should have specific examples and elaboration.  Your essay should be free of careless errors.  Your essay should be at least 5 paragraphs.  Each paragraph should have at least 5 sentences.

Stapled to the back of your typewritten essay should be your first draft.  

The Final Draft of your essay should be placed on the table at the beginning of the class.  Late essays will absolutely not be accepted.  You will receive a grade of zero.  Because this assignment is very important, you may jeopardize your final grade if you do not complete this essay.  You will not be able to print your essay from my computer, send it via email, or go someplace else during my class to print out your essay.

Please note that you have plenty of time to make arrangements to type your essay.  Plan ahead.  Do not wait until the last minute.

See sample below for format and ideas:

Your Name

Mr. Mulhern
English III

20 October 2011

Essay on The Crucible

         All human beings face tests or “crucibles” in their lives.  Some of 

these tests affect entire communities.  In Puritan times, the people of 

Salem, Massachusetts, were challenged by accusations of witchcraft

made by a group of young girls.  Arthur Miller, in his play The 

Crucible, effectively reenacts the tests that different community 

members faced within that town in 1692.  The most interesting character 

to me in this play is <name of the character you are writing 

about>.  <Character name> faces a test of <type of test> and by the end 

of the play is a changed individual.

         In the beginning of the play, <Now follow steps a through j on the 

handout.  Be sure to create good transitions between paragraphs.>

         (This handout is an example of how to begin your essay, and also 

how to continue writing the body of the essay.  Your final typed essay 

should be 12 point Times Roman, double-spaced throughout, MLA 

format, one-inch margins all around.)