Eng 231 - Brock Parks English 231 Mid-Term Puritans and...

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Brock Parks English 231 Mid-Term Puritans and Witches #2 What is a witch? More importantly; what do writers perceive as witches? We see in The Salem Witch Trials Reader a witch is defined as “A magician, who either by open or secret league, wittingly and willingly, contenteth to use the aid and assistance of the devil, in the working of wonders” (Reader 6). To put it more simply, a witch is someone who uses Satan’s power to unlock a myriad of powers. Hawthorne would seem to have known this definition and applied it to his witch in “Feathertop.” He did take the “artistic liberty” of allowing the witch to have the power to create life though. We saw no illustration of that power in The Salem Witch Trials Reader. Therefore how accurate can it be to read Hawthorne’s works on witches? We realize it is fiction, but does it still give the reader a good idea of what a witch was in reality? We see throughout the stories witches that are depicted as having “taken after a very strange manner” (Reader 11).
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