The family life between Parris and Abigail

I chose to write this scene as I found that there could be a little more background on the family life between Parris and Abigail and how she convinced him that her attack was genuine. I found that this could really be conveyed to the audience by adding in the scene where Abigail ‘finds’ the needle sticking out of her stomach and blames it on Elizabeth Proctor. I thought this would be an interesting scene to write for Abigail as she is at one of her strongest points in the play and can persuade almost anyone to fall for her deceiving lies and performances.

To show this underhand side of her in the script I made sure that she used such tactics as making Parris feel guilty for doubting her and tempting him into helping her accuse Elizabeth by giving him a glimpse of what the future may be like, playing on his wish for an obedient and faithful parish. This scene is also meant to show her power, as Betty senses this and joins in with the attack to make it even stronger.

For this scene I believe Abigail should really be holding the stage, gaining in power right until the end. Finally, this scene is to reinforce the audience’s knowledge of Abigail’s astonishing acting skills. Having already discovered her ‘skill for dissembling’ earlier on in the play, they will probably already be relatively suspicious of anything that she does and therefore will be prepared for the fact that it is a lie when they hear the others’ side of the story later on.

They will find out that it was Mary Warren who made the poppet and will therefore be assured that Abby must have done this to herself, which not only shows what she is willing to do to get someone into trouble but also shows us that she must be a very good actress to get everyone to believe that what seemed to have happened really did happen. Taken as a whole, this scene is meant to let us see more of the malicious and scheming side of Abigail, which balanced with the softer and more scared side of her seen elsewhere in the book gives her more depth than just a plainly black and evil villain.

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