The Consequences Of The Salem Witch Hunts

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The events in history do not simply appear in their confined time period and disappear again. Instead, their causes and consequences are dispersed, reflected, and reiterated through new events of different conditions. The atmosphere filled with the pressure to conform and the mass hysteria following an act of dissent in a seventeenth century theocracy based community resurfaced again in the twentieth century. The only distinction found between these events was not the emotions felt, but the environment in which they happened.

The events that happened in Salem in 1692 and 1693 were a unique amalgamation of conditions and activities. By European standards, the witch hunt in Salem was not large, nor was it particularly lethal. The witch hunts
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There was a strong belief in the supernatural, magical, and the diabolical. In addition, Puritan families stressed subordination of women to men. Women were to bear as many children as their husband wished. Because proper Puritan women were to follow this, there was significant suspicion about women who failed to have children or widows who were independent and self-sufficient (Heyrman). These suspicions about women in conjunction with strong beliefs in evil spirits and social, religious, and economic tensions led to the trial, condemnation, and execution of innocent men and women in the town of …show more content…
The girls who were afflicted accused these women of allegedly bringing a deadly illness and actively participating in witchcraft. As more and more women in the town were accused of witchcraft, local magistrates and members of the Governor’s Council intervened to prosecute, arrest or sentence the accused. The testimony of Tituba gave the court confidence in proceeding with indictment. Tituba, a slave of Reverend Parris from the Caribbean, admitted that she dealt with the devil, and said, “I saw a thing like a man and told me to serve him” by hurting the girls. Her testimony was noteworthy in that “it gave officials what they wanted: proof that a witch conspiracy was operating in their midst, along with confession of sin and sincere contrition for diabolical acts” (Baker 20). The testimony of Tituba and other fearful women who confessed gave the upper authority, the court, more power and confidence in their final decisions, which was based on insubstantial evidence such as spectral evidence, a touch test, and testimonies and searches of the homes of the accused (“Salem Witch Trials” Encyclopedia Britannica

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