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Witches through history

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Social Studies High School Medium ELL

Witches Through History

Today witches are a popular Halloween costume. But in the 16th and 17th centuries, many women were accused of witchcraft, which was a capital offense. The witch trials in Salem led to the execution of 19 people. Why were these women targeted? They often didn’t fit the image you may have of someone with supernatural powers. They were mostly poor and without power or influence, but they instilled fear in the community. Have we learned from the scapegoating and stereotyping hundreds of years ago? Listen to this radio story to hear the social and cultural conditions that led to the Salem witch trials, and the allure of what is dangerous and powerful.

Historical Fiction Plays

Story Length: 5:51

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National Public Radio © 2014 National Public Radio, Inc. Used with the permission of NPR. All rights reserved.

AIR DATE: 10/26/2014

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