The Witches: Salem, 1692

The WitchesStacy Schiff writes an excellent history of the Salem witch trials in the mid 1600’s. She pinpoints reasons why the fear of “witchcraft” seized the colony convincing a panicked, suspicious, oppressed community to report anyone’s (brother, sister, mother, father) deviation from exercising the posture of the ideal Puritan– leaving in their wake ingenuous victims to pick up the numbs of fractious allegations and destined to live a shattered life. Schiff does not leave the story in the 17th century, but pinpoints like instances throughout the following centuries, and how the injection of fear can control and manipulate others to one’s own advantage.

–Elaine