A War on Women? The Malleus Maleficarum and the Witch-Hunts in Early Modern Europe

Stringer , Morgan L. (2015) A War on Women? The Malleus Maleficarum and the Witch-Hunts in Early Modern Europe. Undergraduate thesis, under the direction of Jeffrey Watt from History , The University of Mississippi .

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Abstract

This thesis explores the topic of gender and witchcraft, specifically why women were so heavily represented in witchcraft trials. The demonology text, The Malleus Maleficarum was analyzed. Several other demonological texts were also analyzed and then compared to one another regarding their statements about women, men, and witchcraft. Then historiography pertaining to gender and witchcraft were analyzed and critiqued. The Malleus Maleficarum contains a high degree of misogyny, but it presents an extreme misogynistic view that is not present in other demonology texts. The argument that the Early Modern European Witch-Hunts were a war on women fails to account for these texts’ lack of extreme misogyny and other aspects of the witch-hunts, such as the men, who were accused of witchcraft. Early Modern European witch-hunts were not a war on women. Western European witchcraft beliefs made it more likely that a woman would be accused of witchcraft.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Creators: Stringer , Morgan L.
Student's Degree Program(s): B.A. in History
Thesis Advisor: Jeffrey Watt
Thesis Advisor's Department: History
Institution: The University of Mississippi
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Depositing User: Miss Morgan Stringer
Date Deposited: 12 May 2015 18:40
Last Modified: 12 May 2015 18:40
URI: http://thesis.honors.olemiss.edu/id/eprint/459

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