Language of Hysteria

Topics: Salem witch trials, Witchcraft, Salem, Massachusetts Pages: 2 (437 words) Published: January 23, 2011
The Language of Hysteria
During the 1690s, there was a mass hysteria due to beliefs of the existence of witches. With this fact came the Salem Witch Trials which occurred in Salem Village, Massachusetts. A young child began to exhibit abnormal behaviour and so she was taken in to be examined, they found nothing that could cause her to behave in such a manner. The entire village began to panick and started praying to God to get rid of evil. Conspiracies began to take rise in the village that made the villagers believe that there were witches in their village. Three women were accused of having relations with the Satan. Accusations grew larger and soon there were people who were tried and were killed. These events led to the Salem Witch Trials. The hysteria grew and began to worry people of high standings and soon the assumptions of witchcraft ended. Due to misconceptions and assumptions the Salem Witch Trials began.

During the 1930s there was a mass hysteria of alien invasions. This became known as the War of the Worlds radio broadcast sent out by Orson Welles. Welles adds in effects that could cause the people to go into a state of panic. He got the idea from H.G. Wells’ novel The War of the Worlds. Bad timing became the cause of this mass hysteria. Due to the fact that during those times many people had radios and most families were listening to popular shows and by the time they got to Welles’ they were not able to listen to his introduction. They heard music being interrupted and surprising news of explosions and other sounds that exemplify an alien invasion. The people that tuned in to the radio broadcast late misunderstood and developed a fear and this one of the many causes of the mass hysteria in the 1930s.

During the 1690s and the 1930s there mass hysterias like the Salem Witch Trials and the War of the Worlds radio broadcast that caused people to go into panic. These panic attacks were due to misconceptions and misunderstandings. The connection...
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