(Sources: Boyer and Nissenbaum.

The books "Salem Possessed" by Paul Boyer and Stephen Nissenbaum, "The Story of the Salem Witch Trials" by Bryan Le Beau, and "The Devil in the Shape of a Woman" by Carol Karlsen all describe these events and provide varying explanations for the epidemic that plagued Sale...

historian Stephen Nissenbaum, ..

Boyer and Stephen Nissenbaum, ..
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Boyer and Nissenbaum claimed that the ..

Starkey, Marion L. . Garden City, NewYork: Doubleday& Company, 1969.
describes in sequence the people andevents that surrounded the Salem Witch Trials. It is written in a narrativeformat, like a novel, but adds that it is not fiction, it is American history. Ithink that is what makes it more enjoyable to read. The theory surfacesthat these bored young women, living in times that tended to be boring becauselife consisted of working to eat, were looking for some type of drama in theirlife. Through all the frustration that had built up inside of the people intown, the final count ended at twenty people dead for crimes that they did notcommit. At the end of the book she has her notes and her primary source theEssex County Archives. She also has a selected bibliography of her sources andmany secondary sources that she used to research. Annotation edited from areview by Matt Gingo.

by Paul Boyer and Stephen Nissenbaum, ..

Sebald, Hans. Witch-Children from Salem to Modern Courtrooms. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 1995.
Hans Sebald's book Witch-Children from Salem Witch-Hunts to Modern Courtrooms is an in-depth look at the role children have played throughout the western world from the beginnings of the hunts up to the present time. The book is split up into three parts. Sebald states in the introduction that those three parts will examine historical data, a case study, child psychology, and the implications on modern life. His historical data is accurate and the sources are quite well documented and the case study on the Witchboy is a great example of the chaos found in that time period. However, his remarks on child psychology make it seem like suggestibility is their one guiding force. Even in Sebald's case study on the Witchboy something else seems to be going on other than the boy being edged into believing he is possessed. Despite this, Sebald brings about several connections between modern day courtrooms and the witch hunts. The questioning of children and the belief that what they say is accurate in sexual abuse cases and murder trials is certainly something that needs to be analyzed. Annotation by Joshua Philips.

Using Salem Witchcraft Papers by Paul Boyer and Stephan Nissenbaum, ..
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perspective and hypothesis on ..

Paul Boyer and Stephen Nissenbaum's explores the pre-existing social and economic divisions within theSalem Village community, as an entry point to understand theaccusations of witchcraft in 1692. According to Boyer andNissenbaum, the village split into two factions: one interested ingaining more autonomy for Salem Village and led by the Putnamfamily, and the other, interested in the mercantile and politicallife of Salem Town and led by the Porter family. Boyer andNissenbaum's deft and imaginative look at local records reveals thecontours of communal life in colonial New England and provides amodel through which to understand the witchcraft accusations aspart of a larger pattern of communal strife. Such a tight focus oncommunal and social causes for the events of 1692, however, losessight of the religious, gendered, and individual forces that playedequally pivotal roles in the outbreak.

Paul Boyer and Stephen Nissenbaum's redefined the standard for thepossibilities social history offers to understand the events andpeople of early America. Through a painstaking and creative look atlocal records such as legal records, the Salem Village record book,the minister's book, and tax records Boyer and Nissenbaumdiscovered a long-standing pattern of contentious behavior of whichthe witchcraft accusations in 1692 was just one episode. Theiranalysis provides an invaluable insight into the social history ofNew England generally, and the factions of Salem Village that ledto the tragic events of 1692, in particular.

Caporael is a professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute ..

The Salem Witch Trials were a series of court cases in 1692 revolving around witchcraft where over hundred people were accused, nineteen were hanged, and one was pressed to death.

** Tis testimony comes from Boyer & Nissenbaum, 1,;:, ..

Adams, Gretchen A. The Specter of Salem: Remembering the Witch Trials In 19th Century America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008.
In The Specter of Salem, Gretchen Adams examines the way Americans viewed and interpreted the history of the Salem Witch Trials in America. Adams discusses the political aspects of the witch hunts, their role in history, and the cultural shock that these trials instilled in the residents of Salem, Massachusetts. Religious crises are explained throughout Adams' book and turn out to be very thought provoking and intuitive; the ones who started the accusations of witchcraft did so to represent the cases of "persecution, intolerance, and bigotry (3)." Note-worthy authors are used as examples in Adams' book so as to not only establish her expert opinions but to back them up with actual facts and expert secondary source references. In an interesting aspect, Adams brings up the Civil War in her book to discuss how it and the era of Reconstruction had an impact on the witch hunts and trials. Before the Civil War southerners accused the North of having a society filled with episodes of delusions, rebellious fanatics, and persecutions (54). Adams believes that the geographic location of the witch hunts/trials most prominently affected how they were handled; however, she also agrees that religious rebellion, disaster, and social control played a role in the carrying-out and final results of the Salem Witch hunts. This book was definitely an interesting and insightful read. Annotation by Rebecca Brenner.