Discussion 5 - Admission/Application Essay Example

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There is an undeniable link between these two historical occurrences, and my discussion will lay down the basis of this hypothesis.
My tutor, Ms. Pepper has given us an…
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The Great Witch-Hunt How did the Protestant Reformation affect the witch-hunts? The eruption of massive witch-hunt during the Protestant reformation has indeed brought interest to scholars. There is an undeniable link between these two historical occurrences, and my discussion will lay down the basis of this hypothesis.
My tutor, Ms. Pepper has given us an insight as to what was happening in this era that may be attributed to the witch-hunt. She explains that this era was a period punctuated with extreme religious anxiety and mass preaching only heightened the anxiety. This was followed by Bible translation into various vernacular languages. This meant that the bible was accessible to an increasing number of people consequently shifting the authority for the truth from the single Catholic clergy cohort to protestant preachers who interpreted the Bible as they deemed right. This translation was backed by the 15th-century invention of printing press and lead to popularization of word press such as “Teufelbucher.”
Daniel Brooks has another dimension as to the cause of this craze. During this period, there was intense preaching by Protestants. More people were now aware of the power attributed to Satan by people like Calvin and Luther. Awareness of Satan by the common people combined with the suspicion that their neighbors were performing Malefic may have a significant effect towards the great witch-hunt. I believe this was a major contribution to the local witch executions, which claimed more lives of people suspected of witchcraft in Europe more than any other institution. Brooks continues that since one could remove the intermediaries between God and man, and then it was possible to lessen intermediaries between man and devil. That way, the attributed power of Satan would be lessened, and, therefore, the witch-hunt craze.
2. Levack notes that the large-scale witch-hunts occurred during the Reformation. What does this tell us about underlying causes of the witch-hunts? In other words, why do you think this was the case?
Levack’s outstanding observation holds water. It was during this period that numerous lives were lost of those suspected of performing witchcraft. Kira Kardoza has made another interesting observation from the reading. Religion conflict may have had a toll in the great witch-hunt. Lesser conflict existed in countries, which had one-majority religion. In these countries, there was minimal witch-hunt, countries like Spain, which was mostly Catholic and Scandinavian, which was mostly protestant. In German, however, population was split somewhat between Catholic and Protestants and there was a lot of friction between the religions. Consequently, there were much more with hunting occasions, perhaps competing against each other to see who could be holier.
3. In what ways was Protestant theology and demonology different from Catholic? In what ways were they similar?
Daniel explains that in many ways, the Protestant and Catholicism demonology was similar in that it was mostly a copy of medieval beliefs held by Catholics. He also notes that the pronounced different between them was that Protestants put more emphasis on a daily presence of the devil and his power. Chief reformers, such as Calvin and Luther saw the devil as a force to reckon with constantly. They were also concerned with the so-called white magic like charms and healing, and they may have even believed them to be more dangerous. I think they believed so in the belief that it was magic concealed to lure people into thinking magic could be used in a good way. Anna Block seems to agree with this, and she adds that Protestants were wore inclined to a simple relationship with God and direct scripture readings while Medieval Catholicism placed angels and other beings as being between God and His followers.
Thought Question 2
1. What do you make of the fact that artists and writers produced works about witches and witchcraft?
There is an outstanding collection of both literature and artwork for this period of the great with hunt. I agree with Kelly Pang that witches and witchcraft concerns were a great theme in those days. This is seconded from the UCOR art class last quarter where we discovered that often artists would use their art as a catharsis of expressing strife going on in their lives or the community and my Tutor agrees with her. Jeremy adds that the fact that the artists and writers produced these works means that it was a big topic and issue in that time. He explains that witches were seen as evil, and they made pacts with the devil. He has also given a very interesting example found in page 139 where Faustus says, “Now tell, what says Lucifer thy lord?”
2. What messages about witches and witchcraft were disseminated through high culture? In what ways did art and literature offer similar depictions and in what ways were they different?
Kelly Pang deduces that the main message being passed was that the devil and Maleficium could seduce anyone. She has also given a clear example where the famous Doctor Faustus was seduced with the promise of 24 years of unlimited power. On page 18, his servant Wagner also starts performing Maleficium by summoning demons. Robin the clown and Wagner’s servants follow suit. She also has another observation, even if the individuals seemed to have control over demons, such as summoning them, in the real sense, it was the other way round.
Art and literature, Jeremy discusses, were similar in ways people took it to heart. They differ also in the same thought because different people read a book about witches and have different views. It is true what Jeremy has argued out. If an artist sculptured an evil looking representation of a witch, people would tend to take it that way and vice versa. How they portrayed a witch was a denominator of how witches were perceived.
3. Where do you see the influence of the Reformation in high art? What does that tell us about the relationship between religion and culture?
There are no pronounced influences of the Reformation on high art as Kelly notes with reference to the play being an art of some sort. The play heavily inclines to Catholicism more than Protestants. Catholics believed more on one having control over their salvation while Protestants believed in predestination. In this manner, then one would argue that Faustus was predestined for hell, which would translate to devil having won while Protestants believe that God always prevailed. During reformation, Kelly continues, Protestants banned use of Counter magic and white magic. The influence can be captured in the dimension where Christians believe that the devil was very present in their lives which are reflected where Mephistopheles was with Faustus most of the time but invisible.
Jeremy has made a good observation about the relationship between culture and religion. Both were closely intertwined with each other. Kelly Pang adds that the presence of both Catholicism and Protestants in the play is a clear indicator of just how deep in the culture the religion divide had worked its way such that even art and play had been influenced by it. Read More
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