October Review: The Witchcraft of Salem Village by Shirley Jackson

by Kaley Ingenito
Have you read Arthur Miller’s The Crucible? Great. Then don’t bother with this book.
shirley-jacksoin-witchcraftThis is literally exactly the same story, minus the torrid love affair and a moving speech by John Proctor. Arthur Miller had his play published in 1953 and Shirley Jackson published this historical account three years later… so there must have been some kind of fascination with Salem in the 50’s.
The most interesting part of the book, actually, is the analysis of the aftermath of the trials. Jackson explores the how the trials have affected our present day view of what “counts” as evidence or proof.
Perhaps you might find this book enjoyable if you know nothing (seriously, nothing) about the witch trials that took place in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. Also, it might help if you’re at a third-grade reading level. Otherwise, there is not much here to enjoy.

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