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Six Women of Salem : The Untold Story of the Accused and Their Accusers in the Salem Witch Trials
by Marilynne K. Roach


Overview - Six Women of Salem is the first work to use the lives of a select number of representative women as a microcosm to illuminate the larger crisis of the Salem witch trials. By the end of the trials, beyond the twenty who were executed and the five who perished in prison, 207 individuals had been accused, 74 had been "afflicted," 32 had officially accused their fellow neighbors, and 255 ordinary people had been inexorably drawn into that ruinous and murderous vortex, and this doesn't include the religious, judicial, and governmental leaders.  Read more...

 
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More About Six Women of Salem by Marilynne K. Roach
 
 
 
Overview
Six Women of Salem is the first work to use the lives of a select number of representative women as a microcosm to illuminate the larger crisis of the Salem witch trials. By the end of the trials, beyond the twenty who were executed and the five who perished in prison, 207 individuals had been accused, 74 had been "afflicted," 32 had officially accused their fellow neighbors, and 255 ordinary people had been inexorably drawn into that ruinous and murderous vortex, and this doesn't include the religious, judicial, and governmental leaders. All this adds up to what the Rev. Cotton Mather called "a desolation of names."

The individuals involved are too often reduced to stock characters and stereotypes when accuracy is sacrificed to indignation. And although the flood of names and detail in the history of an extraordinary event like the Salem witch trials can swamp the individual lives involved, individuals still deserve to be remembered and, in remembering specific lives, modern readers can benefit from such historical intimacy. By examining the lives of six specific women, Marilynne Roach shows readers what it was like to be present throughout this horrific time and how it was impossible to live through it unchanged.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780306821202
  • ISBN-10: 0306821206
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publish Date: September 2013
  • Page Count: 445
  • Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds


Related Categories

Books > History > United States - Colonial Period
Books > History > United States - State & Local - New England
Books > Social Science > Women's Studies - General

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2013-10-21
  • Reviewer: Staff

Roach (The Salem Witch Trials) makes history more accessible in her latest book on the infamous mass hysteria that took place in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692–1693, resulting in the executions of 20 supposed "witches," and the accusations of about 200. Roach successfully constructs first-person narratives from the perspectives of six real Salem women—both accusers and accused. This style of narrative provides an intimacy with the Salem people without feeling too fictionalized or overdone. Roach draws on a number of primary and secondary documents to illuminate every detail of the Salem witch trials, while duly paying respect to the victims of these horrific trials. She lays out the facts, but avoids speculation or further analysis. This book is easily digestible even for those who stray away nonfiction, yet readers still reap the benefits of Roach's thorough researched and expertise on the subject. (Sept.)

 
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