Similarities Between The Salem Witch Trials And Mccarthyism

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“YOU’RE A WITCH!” “YOU’RE A COMMUNIST!” Imagine you’ve been brought to a court or government panel, even though you haven't committed any crime or been charged with one. You are questioned about your political or biblical values and are accused of disloyalty or of being a witch and are asked to incriminate your friends, neighbors and associates. If you don’t cooperate, you risk jail, losing your job, or are killed; this occurred during the Salem witch trials and the McCarthyism era. McCarthyism was a vociferous campaign against alleged communists in the US government and other institutions carried out under Senator Joseph McCarthy in the period 1950–54. Majority of the accused were blacklisted or lost their jobs, although most did not in fact …show more content…
This took place during The Salem witch trials and the McCarthyism era. In the McCarthy era, everyone feared communists and immigrants. There was a small group of communists that supported labor and civil rights and it also supported the Soviet Union. Domestic communism started to be seen as a threat to national security. According to the video What is McCarthyism? And how did it happen? by Ellen Schrecker: “Joseph McCarthy, a Republican senator from Wisconsin became notorious by flaunting ever changing lists of alleged communists within the state of department. Egged on by other politicians, he continued to make outrageous accusations while distorting or fabricating evidence.” This relates to the main antagonist Abigail Williams from Arthur Miller's play The Crucible because on Abigail’s quest to gain the love of John Proctor, she and her friends started the Salem witch hunt. The girls ran around accusing many people; the people they disliked and those who got in their way. According to the video Hunting the Communists! - Joseph McCarthy l THE COLD WAR: McCarthy held up a piece of paper during one of his speeches and claimed he had the names of over 200 communists. Just like him, Abigail stabbed herself with a needle and claimed that Elizabeth Proctor's spirit stabbed her. During both time periods, people believe them without question because they feared witches or …show more content…
This prevailed during The Salem witch trials and the McCarthyism era. According to The Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) article, the video What is McCarthyism? And how did it happen? by Ellen Schrecker, and the video Hunting the Communists! - Joseph McCarthy l THE COLD WAR, if you didn’t answer the courts, “confess” to being a communist or incriminate your friends; you risked jail, losing your job, and, or getting blacklisted. “When the Devil came to you, did you see Rebecca Nurse in his company? … Did you ever see her sister, Mary Easty, with the Devil? … Did you ever see Martha Corey with the Devil? … Did you ever see anyone with the Devil?” (Miller, 129 - 130) The Salem witch trials had similar punishments, if they didn’t tell the court what they wanted and if you didn’t “confess” to being a witch or being in contact with the devil, you faced jail and death. In both the Salem witch trials and the McCarthyism era, the accused were questioned and punished and so were their friends and associates but it also affected everyone that knew them. Getting put into prison, losing your job, getting blacklisted and being told to incriminate anyone and everyone you knew caused everyone not to trust each other so it destroyed everyones work and social life during the McCarthy era and during the Salem witch trials. Everyone accused and everyone they knew was affected because they didn't know who to trust and no one knew who really

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