Sunday, March 01, 2009

Sorcery-related killings in Papua New Guinea akin to Salem witch hunt

The numerous sorcery-related killings in Papua New Guinea where innocent men, women and children are killed can only be compared to the Salem witch trials.

Viewed by many to be the result of a period of factional infighting and religious hysteria, the witch trials of Puritanical Salem Village, Massachusetts, led to the executions of 20 people—15 women and five men—and the imprisonment of approximately 150 accused witches.

Even after the trials ended, people who had previously been found not guilty of witchcraft remained in prison, held until they paid their jail fees.

What is "spectral evidence," and how did it play a role in the witch trials? More...

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