Causes of the Witch Hunts

Mind Map by , created over 6 years ago

A-Levels Extended Essay Mind Map on Causes of the Witch Hunts, created by claire.elizabeth on 06/04/2013.

Created by claire.elizabeth over 6 years ago
Questions to ask
1_World Studies RRS
Question Words - GCSE German
OCR AS Biology
World Studies RRS
Political, Social, Economic or Religious?
Extended Essay
Extended Essay Brainstorming
Historians opinions on what was the main cause of the witch hunts
Causes of the Witch Hunts
1 Political Causes
1.1 A way to control the masses
1.2 Snowballing affect
1.2.1 Not a direct cause but continued the craze
1.3 Met the demand of the populace
1.4 Ruler could demonstrate his power
1.5 Prevented pressure bubbling through the masses
1.6 Politically safe
1.6.1 No one from the upper classes was implicated
1.7 Witchcraft became an act of heresy
1.8 A way of politicians discrediting their opponents
1.9 Confused boarders meant that there were more 'outsiders' who were the typical victims in the witch trials
1.10 Princ-Bishops could consolidate their power
1.11 Fragmentation of political authority-panic got out of hand
1.12 Julius Echter von Mespelbrunn
1.12.1 Saw women as weak
1.12.2 Believed that female lust would undermine social&religious order
1.13 The officials' fear of heresy
1.14 No powerful members of society opposed the witch hunts
1.15 Politicians sought to exercise an increasing moral authority
1.15.1 Witchcraft legislation was often accompanied with measures to regulate morality
2 Social Causes
2.1 Revenge
2.1.1 Beggars denied charity would accuse neighbours of witchcraft
2.1.2 The Church was not longer providing for the poor
2.1.3 Suspicion led to neighbours denouncing each other Suspicion about 'mysterious' event
2.2 Malleus Maleficarum
2.2.1 Judges more aware of the presence of evil
2.2.2 Caused people to acknowledge witchcraft
2.2.3 Allowed judges to prosecute without proof
2.3 Poor records of practising Christianity
2.4 Pressure from the populace
2.5 Trials usually emerged out of complex disputes within local communities
2.6 Lack of scapegoats; in Spain the Jews were the scapegoats therefore the witch hunts were more controlled
3 Economic Causes
3.1 Peaks in witch trials coincided with period of famine, and natural 'disasters' or war
3.2 Need for scapegoats
4 Religious Causes
4.1 Religious reform attracted more women BUT they were more suspicious of women
4.2 Role of women was more defined in the Protestant church therefore people who diverged from this role were automatically suspicious
4.3 Mass unrest and suspicion between Catholics and Protestants
4.4 Religious divide
4.5 Anti-Semitic movement in the 17th century led to Jews and witches being grouped together
4.6 Malleus Maleficarum transformed witchcraft from a diabolical conspiracy to overthrow the established church
4.7 Linked to the Christian obsession with the devil
4.8 Catholic belief in the miracle of Mass made it easier for people to belief in witchcraft
4.9 Protestants believed the Pope was the Antichrist
4.10 Catholics viewed Lutherans and Calvinists as agents of the devil
4.11 The regions that were hardest hit were the areas with the most disputes between Protestants and Catholics

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