Book Cover
Author Rosenthal, Bernard, 1934-

Title Salem story : reading the witch trials of 1692 / Bernard Rosenthal
Published Cambridge [England] ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1993


Location Call no. Vol. Availability
 MELB  133.43097445 Ros/Ssr  AVAILABLE
Description xi, 286 pages ; 23 cm
Series Cambridge studies in American literature and culture ; 73
Cambridge studies in American literature and culture ; 73
Contents Machine derived contents note: 1. Dark Eve -- 2. The girls of Salem -- 3. Boys and girls together -- 4. June 10, 1692 -- 5. July 19, 1692 -- 6. August 19, 1692 -- 7. George Burroughs and the Mathers -- 8. September 22, 1692 -- 9. Assessing an inextricable storm -- 10. Salem story
Summary Of the many assumptions about the Salem witch trials, the most persistent is that they were instigated by a circle of hysterical girls. Through an analysis of what actually happened - by perusal of the primary materials with the "close reading" approach of a literary critic - a different picture emerges, one where "hysteria" inappropriately describes the logical, rational strategies of accusation and confession followed by the accusers, males and females alike
Salem Story engages the story of the Salem witch trials by contrasting an analysis of the surviving primary documentation with the way the events of 1692 have been mythologized by our culture. Resisting the temptation to explain the Salem witch trials in the context of an inclusive theoretical framework, the book examines a variety of individual motives that converged to precipitate the witchhunt. Salem Story also examines subsequent mythologizations, such as the scapegoating of the slave Tituba, the sexualizing and age stereotyping of "witches" in popular culture, and attempts to force interpretations of the witch-hunt into paradigms of future generations
Analysis United States
Witchcraft History
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 221-265) and index
Subject Trials (Witchcraft) -- Massachusetts -- Salem.
Witchcraft -- Massachusetts -- Salem.
Witchcraft -- history.
Witchcraft -- legislation & jurisprudence
Salem (Mass.) -- Church history.
LC no. 93000609
ISBN 0521440610 (hardback)
0521558204 (paperback)