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Transcript

Which witch
is which ?

Cassandra Fabbro

Witches

Here you can discover the three notions discussed in this chapter.

Puritanism

McCarthyism

Modern witches hunt

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Principle of Puritanism

Who are the witches

Punishment

Witchcraft

Principle of Puritanism

Puritanism

Moral values

What was
forbidden

- Strict moral code
- Marriage is highly recommended
- Puritans used to believe in predestination
- Denial of physical and social pleasures
- Puritans had to dress in plain dark colours
- Forest is the home of the devil, more particulary at night; place of witches

- No dancing
- No colourful clothes
- No card playing
- No holidays celebrations
- No fashionable accessories
- Adultery is banned

"The Witch", oil on canvas, by Jean-François Portaels Vilvorde, 1818

Who are the witches

Medicinal herbs : rue, wort, yew, poppy, hellebore, yarrow, rose


Mode of preparation : pressed, steeped, boiled, ground, burnt, brewed,

They make potions, cursed families, threw things, screamed, wedged themselves underneath furniture, made bizarre sounds, twisted themselves in an unsual positions

They're possessed by the devil



The definition of a witch have evolved towards a more tolerant and open-minded view, showing that their evolution matches the mindset of their period.

First, witches were only defined as harmful; then in 2004 the term witchcraft was still used for "evil magic and sorcery", but it was recognised that this was a matter of perception by their peers.

Finally, the last and most recent definition has several aspects, and refers to magic without deeming it evil. It evokes modern paganism and shows witches as feminist icons.

Punishment

A woman accused of witchcraft relies on Satan to save herself, 1692

People were shamed and humilated, they were punished publicly sometimes to death and rejected by society.

Sarah Good, Sarah Osborn and Tituba were the first three witches arrested in 1692.

Sarah Good was accused only by her reputation, Sarah Osborn rarely attended church, and the townspeople believed she only had her own self-interests in mind and Tituba had entertained the local girl with stories about witches and fortune-telling games.

The Salem witch trials were a series of hearings and prosecutions of people accused of witchcraft in colonial Massachusetts between February 1692 and May 1693. More than two hundred people were accused.

McCarthyism

Hollywood Ten

Principle of McCarthyism

Joseph McCarthy

Richard Nixon

Principle of McCarthyism

Ambitious politician Richard Nixon and Joseph McCarthy accused the government to be soft about communism. So they creates their own witches hunt. The McCarthyism happened in the 1950’ and exposed suspect communist. The America and the Soviet were allies against Hitler and many personality like bureaucrat, journaliste, politician were involved.

You can be accused, or charge for a crime you didn’t do, or for lying about the other suspects. You need to accuse your friend, and if you don’t cooperate you can be fired or jailed. If you sign a petition or if you hold a sign or associative with those who did, if you own modern art in your walls, have a multi racial social circle or sign petition against nuclear weapons maybe you are communist and you can be jailed. For McCarthy they represent a danger for the country so they need to be eliminated of every position so communism can’t take the power. A lot of public and private employers were questioned and they can be fired, jailed or black listed and if they didn’t have any evidence they would creat some. So McCarthyism destroy everything, if republicans and democrats say it’s unjust they would be judged too. They are watching everybody all the time so they can make sure that nobody will corrupt the government.

Hollywood Ten

Charlie Chaplin 1889-1977

Charlie Chaplin was accused of being a communist by senator McCarthy. Presumably, there was a produced file which detailed his subversive political activities since 1922. It contain several press clippings and private letters which reflect the public reaction to Chaplin’s presumed Communist activities. Chaplin was living in America for nearly 40 years when he was put on an FBI blacklist in 1948. He has been judged and exiled. Charlie Chaplin chose to remain in Europe and said that he wouldn’t go back to the USA even if Jesus Christ was the president. He settled in Switzerland and he say that he will remained there until his death. However, Charlie Chaplin returned to the United States in 1972 and accepted a special Oscar at the Academy Awards ceremony, receiving a standing ovation.

A lot of people who worked in Hollywood were black listed, for examples : actors, actresses, writers, directors and a lot of them were living in fear. The population were scared to be denounced, jailed or killed. Some of them committed suicide because it was too oppressive and difficult.

Modern witches hunt

In 2018, singer Beyoncé was accused of witchcraft by an ex-musician in her group. Kimberley Thompson has filed a complaint against the star, accusing her in particular of practicing witchcraft rituals which caused the death of her kitten!

Children too can be accused of being witches. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, in the province of South Kivu (in the east of the country) many cases have been reported. In very poor environments, the accusation of witchcraft is a good justification for getting rid of (abandoning, sometimes killing) children suffering from epilepsy, deformity or sometimes difficult and rebellious children whose parents fail to discipline them. Sometimes when one parent dies, the other parent blames a child for killing them.

Thanks!