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0px Helvetica; -webkit-text-stroke: #000000}span.s1 {font-kerning: none}span.Apple-tab-span {white-space:pre} The salem witch trials is a great example, in history, of manipulation and ignorance, no differences were permitted and it was vital to follow rules, harsh consequences were imposed. Evidence of this could be found in many literary pieces, such as  Arthur Miller’s “The crucible” , expressing the insanity of many, willing to sacrifice others to rid themselves of the “evil spirits”. Their lack of knowledge and ignorance makes them easily malleable to all that goes around and the use of religious beliefs to drive the population and manipulate them, herded by fear.  The Salem Witch Trials, between February 1692 and May 1693, were of a time where any accusation of witchcraft was taken as evidence to the right to persecute.

Many of those who were once powerless, were then empowered with a voice to charge any individual of witchcraft they seem fit. These accusations caused an uproar of many to accuse others to gain control. A major conflict in the trials themselves are the overuse of spectral evidence. The “actual crime” involves the interaction between the accused witch and the “devil”, where the devil might’ve taken a “human form”, however, by it’s every nature, this was impossible to be witnessed, therefore, finding actual evidence was extremely difficult and a simple accusation had to be taken seriously. Evidence included sworn claims, by the afflicted, that  One problem with spectral evidence was that “apparitions of demons were invisible to other people in the same room”, only the afflicted girls could see the shapes. Confessions were vigorously sought as those who confessed weren’t executed, while those who were hanged adamantly maintained their innocence. Another test made on the accused was for any “supernatural weaknesses” such as the inability to recite prayers correctly, as the Puritan, “a group of people who grew discontent in the Church of England and worked towards religious, moral and societal reforms”, lifestyle was heavily influenced by Christian beliefs. The Puritans also believed strongly in “the wrath of God” and did everything to save themselves, in fear of the day of judgement.

This was a major cause to why the witch scare was taken so seriously and the accused were punished harshly. The first “women” to be accused as witches were those who didn’t exactly go by the Puritan lifestyle. The Puritans were convinced that the devil was “alive” and ready to corrupt the weakest minds, especially women and children, would be selected to carry out his work as they were “prone to sin”. Instead of having actual evidence for an accusation, these women were left in the hands of testimonies or claims made by teenage girls or simply on their position in society. Additionally, Salem was built upon “political problems and internal strife”. Land disputes and personal feuds were common. The Puritan villagers felt they had failed God and deserved to be punished for their sins.

The afflicted girls have been vividly described as “outright liars and frauds, children looking for excitement, victims of disease, and sincere believers in the idea that they were victims of witchcraft”.


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