In the Devil's Snare: The Salem Witchcraft Crisis of 1692

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Dec 18, 2007 - History - 448 pages
Award-winning historian Mary Beth Norton reexamines the Salem witch trials in this startlingly original, meticulously researched, and utterly riveting study.

In 1692 the people of Massachusetts were living in fear, and not solely of satanic afflictions. Horrifyingly violent Indian attacks had all but emptied the northern frontier of settlers, and many traumatized refugees—including the main accusers of witches—had fled to communities like Salem. Meanwhile the colony’s leaders, defensive about their own failure to protect the frontier, pondered how God’s people could be suffering at the hands of savages. Struck by the similarities between what the refugees had witnessed and what the witchcraft “victims” described, many were quick to see a vast conspiracy of the Devil (in league with the French and the Indians) threatening New England on all sides. By providing this essential context to the famous events, and by casting her net well beyond the borders of Salem itself, Norton sheds new light on one of the most perplexing and fascinating periods in our history.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DarthDeverell - LibraryThing

In In the Devil’s Snare: The Salem Witchcraft Crisis of 1692, Mary Beth Norton argues, “The witchcraft crisis of 1692 can be comprehended only in the context of nearly two decades of armed conflict ... Read full review

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User Review  - mbmackay - LibraryThing

This book was a fail for me. I'm sure that Mary Beth Norton is the master of her material, but she failed to present in a manner that would make her mastery accessible to the average reader. She has ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
3
Under an Evil Hand
15
Gospel Women
44
Pannick at the Eastward
82
Burroughs Their Ringleader
232
All Sorts of Objections
266
New Witchland
295
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Mary Beth Norton is Mary Donlon Alger Professor of American History at Cornell University. She is the author of The British-Americans: The Loyalist Exiles in England, 1774—1789 (1972); Liberty’s Daughters: The Revolutionary Experience of American Women, 1750—1800 (1980); Founding Mothers & Fathers: Gendered Power and the Forming of American Society (1996), which was a Pulitzer Prize finalist; and (with five others) A People and a Nation (6th ed., 2001). She has also edited several works on women’s history and served as the general editor of The AHA Guide to Historical Literature (3rd ed., 1995).

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