Human nature is the driving force in The Crucible. All of the conflicts in the play have to do with the little problems people have with each other and with themselves. Jealousy, being unfaithful, and guilt all play roles in the main conflict. Another part of human nature that influences the plot is not wanting to get in trouble and using a situation to the most advantage possible.
Jealousy plays a huge part in the witch trials of the play. Elizabeth Proctor is accused by Abigail because Abigail is jealous of her husband (Miller 74). Abigail wants to be John Proctor's wife, so she accuses Elizabeth of being a witch in an attempt to get her hung so she can marry John. She must be either really jealous or really inconsiderate to want to murder someone to get what they have.
Faithlessness also plays a part in the plot. Sometimes we all do stupid things that we are bound to be made miserable by. John Proctor has the same problem. He cheated on his wife with Abigail, and Abigail decided she was in love with him. Then Abigail decided to try to kill his wife (Miller 74). Obviously getting involved with Abigail was a bad idea. Because of his cheating ways his family got in a whole lot of trouble. Besides the obvious consequences, because Proctor cheated on his wife, he starts to loose his self esteem.
By the end of the play he considers lying to save himself because he does not feel like he deserves to be martyred for his honesty (Miller136). He thinks he is so worthless that it does not matter if he lies to save himself. His guilt made him feel completely horrible by the end of the play. Guilt is a pretty common part of human nature because we all have ideas about what is right, and for the most part we all take care to do the right thing as much as possible.
Abigail blames everyone possible for her behavior in an attempt to avoid trouble. She really does not want to get in trouble, so she is willing to shift the blame to anyone else possible. Again, she must be really inconsiderate, because that is really rude.
Abigail uses the witch trials she created to the most advantage possible. She puts the people that annoy her in prison and on trial. She even tries to get her lover's wife hung. Everyone will try to get the most out of a favorable situation, however, not everyone is quite so ruthless about it.
Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. New York, NY: Penguin, 1996. Print.