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Historical and Social Science Research - Essay Example

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In the article Witchcraft, Politics and Memory in Seventeenth Century, Malcolm Gaskill describes through empirical research how the witchcraft accusations on women in the 19th century held diverse motives and was seen from different perspectives. Enlightenment era in 1900 saw it…
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Historical and Social Science Research
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Historical and Social Science Research

Download file to see previous pages... Witch hunt soon began to be regarded as politically motivated, associated with corruptions and intrigues rather than a means of alleviating evil. It was hindered when severe economic conditions took toll on the economy and made witch hunt difficult (Lemieux, 2007).
The article relates in detail the case of Anne Bodenham, an old woman who was executed for being a ‘stereotypical witch,’ who owned things symbolic of witches, predicted future and was even able to transform into different animals. Her association with the well-known astrologist and wizard, John Lambe, is also strongly confirmed in the accounts. The source for most of the information available on Bodenham is Edmond Bower, a legal clerk from Dorset, who, as a religious writer and ‘an eye and ear Witness of her Examination and Confession, was inspired to write a descriptive pamphlet. According to Bower, this was in order to warn ‘good Christians’ against the seduction of such ungodly practises. His eagerness to declare Bodenham as a witch could be seen from his constant efforts to make her confess before her death. Through this, he could establish himself as a successful witch hunter. Diane Purkiss also tells of he used politics to disgrace her completely in Britain along with an highly implicit line of attack. It is hence, inappropriate to base evidence on religious clerics like Edmond Bower as his account may involve bias resulting from the friction between religious and the then emerging unconventional ways that need not be evil, as mentioned in the article itself.
Apart from religious clerics, historical pamphlets have been used in the article that indicates sexual relationship between Dr John Lambe and student, Anne Bodenham and other such major affairs. Their adherence is attributed to extensive height of politics and low morality.
Another source is Anne Styles, a maid servant of Richard Goddard, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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