Analysis of an American Trial: The Salem Witch Trials of 1692
Today, the Salem village located in Massachusetts in the United States of America is notorious to the world for being the village, where unjustified witch prosecutions and trials took place. The Salem has fallen into such disrepute because of the sad historical events occurred there in 1692. Many women, including little girls aged 4 and 11, were accused of witchcraft without any valid evidentiary material. All of them were considered to be the Devil’s servants, who possessed supernatural powers for the purposes of harming people and pleasing the Devil by doing so. Such women were imprisoned, hanged on the trees or just killed.
Analyzing such horrible events, the first thing I would like to pay attention to is needless human losses caused by a set of severe actions by the local government and the court. It is frightful to think of the situation, where all people around line up against helpless women and little girls, believing in absurd things. I am sure that such a scenario cannot be acceptable in any society. From the events following the Salem trials, we can see that accusation of witchcraft has been a terrible mistake. However, the female lives that were taken at that time could not ever be returned.
In 1692, people clearly separated good and evil. Everything they could not define as normal for themselves and could not explain were taken as evil and should have been fought and killed. Mostly, it happened because of certain religious beliefs and the fear that drove people crazy and made them do the things, which they had regrets about afterwards. I believe that the Salem trials are exactly a kind of such situation. Some of the Salem women produced strange sounds, told awful stories and visions, talked to the darkness and held abnormal ceremonies. Those, who listened to them and saw all what they did, did not understand them and their actions and got afraid, thinking that these women were evil.
I think that there have never been witches with superpowers in the Salem village as well as at any place in the world. We have to think rationally, and the idea of women, witching and serving the Devil, does not sound like rational to me. Perhaps, the sounds and strange murmurs of the Salem women as well as their actions could be explained as symptoms of certain psychological disorders, and nothing more. However, in 1692 no one had detailed knowledge, concerning psychological aspects of human personality. All was put within the framework of good and evil. Therefore, the Salem witch trials are remembered as the most absurd and unjustified in history.