The Motive For The Salem Witchcraft

940 WordsApr 30, 20154 Pages
Witchcraft is a subject in American History that has kept historians intrigued for ages. Nevertheless, this volatile topic addresses many questions of how women are perceived during this hectic and forbidding time. A person did not have to be a murderer or a thief to be consumed with fear during this time. Unfortunately, fear could be present simply due to their jealous neighbor, or the fact that they had an abundance of land. The violence against women, and a few men, brought out anxiety for the confusions of events that could not be justified. “In 1656, few New Englanders would have been surprised to see a woman prosecuted-or even executed-for witchcraft.” Why did women distinguish themselves as inferior and how did they become the obvious targets for blame? Consequently, the motive for The Salem Witchcraft Hysteria predominately is placed on women due to their social status, inherited rights, whether past or future, and problems that surfaced in a society that needed rationalism. It has been more than three hundred years from the time when fourteen women, and five men were executed for the crime of witchcraft on Gallows Hill in Salem, Massachusetts. Another man was pressed to death with stones for refusing to enter a plea. This was a time when panic and chaos were already prevalent due to the French and Indian war and that the devil was looming not so far away. Women happen to be targeted more than men for the practice of witchcraft, at a ratio of about three to one.

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