Ultimately, I believe that the Salem Witch Trials’ main cause was mass hysteria and paranoia among the group. I can predict this, because in Exhibit A, Cotton Mather states, “ I will prove that Witchcraft exists. Those who deny it exists argue that they never saw any witches, therefore there are none.” I believe this is strong evidence supporting the over exaggeration of most people towards the trials and how hysterical people can become towards an unrealistic assumption like witches and witchcraft. Another piece of evidence supporting mass hysteria as the cause of the trials would be in Exhibit B, where Abigail Hobbs a 16 year old girls pleads guilty.
The definition of hysteria is exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement. The devil came to Salem in 1692, or did it? The Puritans believed that Salem had been conquered by witches. The girls began to name members of the surrounding community. They became hysterical.
Introduction George Jacobs Sr. said, “You tax me for a wizard, you may as well tax me for a buzzard I have done no harm.” Although his words were true, many chose to either believe this hysteria or turn the other way. He died along with many other women and men. This was just the start of the many terrors of the Salem witch trials. Yet if you confessed to being a witch then you had a better chance of living, but if you denied you would automatically get hanged.
REVIEW OF LITRATURE A.) SUMMARY SOURCE A Although the whole book had information on the Salem witch trials. The introduction, chapter 1 and 2 and the conclusion had information regarding the research needed • Introduction: states what the Salem witch trials where and who they accused.
In Salem, Massachusetts, Puritans were strong believers in the Bible. The Bible states, “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” The Puritans beliefs led to them accusing 20 innocent people of being a witch, this resulted in their deaths in 1692. Even though the Puritans couldn’t see it at the time, their accusations were really based off jealousy, lies, and Salem being divided into two parts. One cause of the Salem witch trial hysteria was jealousy.
The Salem witch trials were the prosecution of people accused of witchcraft in Massachusetts from June to September 1692 by the Court of Oyer and Terminer. Though the trials were held in Salem, the accused were brought in from the neighboring towns of Amesbury, Andover, Topsfield, Ipswich, and Gloucester as well. To this day the trials are considered the epitome of injustice, paranoia, scapegoating, mass hysteria, and mob justice. The results were almost 200 arrests, 19 executed “witches”, one man pressed to death, one man stoned to death, and two dogs killed because they were suspected to be familiars of their owners who were accused of being witches. (Familiars are evil spirits in the form of animals used by witches to cast spells and perform
The first four colonies of America were, New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay Colony, Rhode Island, following with Connecticut. John Winthrop, Thomas Hooker, Roger Williams, along with Anne Hutchinson, were few of the founders of the first colonies. Centered around religion, after escaping religious persecution, these colonies based the way they lived their lives around the Bible, Church, along with the New testament. The Puritans emphasized religious obligations and followed strict guidelines pertaining to the Bible. They broke away from the church of England and became their own religion following the teachings of the Bible as well as the Old Testament.
Not many people know much about what actually happened in the Salem Witch Trials. Maybe someone would think that it was just about witchcraft and crazy people being hanged, but it is a lot more than that. The Salem Witch Trials only occurred between 1692 and 1693, but a lot of damage had been done. The idea of the Salem Witch Trials came from Europe during the “witchcraft craze” from the 1300s-1600s. In Europe, many of the accused witches were executed by hanging.
Between 1692 and 1693, in Salem Village, Massachusetts, the Salem witch trials were taking place. In the event, many were accused of witchcraft and some were even executed. This event had left many curious as to what caused the people to accept witchcraft and treat it as a crime. To explain the trials, Paul Boer and Stephen Nissenbaum wrote the book Salem Possessed: The Social Origins of Witchcraft in which they analyzed and broke down key components of the witch trials.
The Puritans ran from persecution but then used the witch hunt to persecute innocent people based on the word of the women and men who had ulterior motives. The women used this opportunity to punish people they long had problems or resentment for. These women- Abigail, Tituba, and Mary- were aware of the power they felt when they were being heard by people in their community who were deemed Godly, upstanding citizens. So, they loved the sense of power they felt. Although the townspeople of Salem used religion as the reason for the witch hunt, the witch hunt created chaos because people started using it a revenge mechanism.
There were bizarre things that happened throughout history, but the most bizarre thing was the women in the Salem Witch Trials. The Salem Witch Trials happened in 1692. The Salem Witch Trials was the oddest thing that happened in Massachusetts. During the Salem Witch Trials young girls displayed odd behaviors, physicians were called to examine the girls and could not find any natural causes of their odd behavior, and the young girls were pressured into revealing who was controlling them ( “The Salem Witch Trials, 1692”).
One example of this is the hysteria of McCarthyism in the 1950s. Many people are filled with fear of the Communists and accuse many innocent people. The accused must then say who else they know are involved, and this allows the hysteria to spread and leads to chaos. Another example of this in everyday life is terrorism. Many people in today’s society allow the extreme fear of a terrorist attack to control their actions and perceptions.
Power can have the persuasive action in undoing the moral ethics of one’s character. This can be seen throughout history, such as World War II and proven by the actions of Napoleon in the allegory, Animal Farm, by George Orwell. As Lord Acton said “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” In history what was viewed as a villain, is never the same as the perception. A leader does not begin wanting to do wrong, they start with the best intentions, but power is a tricky thing.
Abuse of Power From the beginning of time until now, civilization has always felt the need to be organized under a leader. The craving of power lives in most people. Sometimes men striving for power can work their way up to a dictatorship, absolute control, by using propaganda, fear, and many other methods. In the novel, Animal Farm by George Orwell, Napoleon portrays similar qualities in power as Hitler.