Posted by: elenaordaz | 31 October, 2011

The Witchhunt. A Problem From the Past?

Between the end of the 16th century and the begining of the 17th century thousands of women around Europe were accused of making a pact with the devil and were burned at the stake. Paradoxically most of them hadn’t commited any demonstrable crime. What’s more, some of them didn’t even know what they were charged with. It means that it was one of the numerous imaginary crimes that have led people to death in the History of the world.

Anonymous accusations, under pressure examinations and torture were accepted in order to bring the supposed witches to the stake. What’s even worse, executions usually turned into  “moralizing“shows as the Church would say that flames wouldn’t only destroy the prisoners bodies, but also their sins.

The prisoners were forced to admit that they had renounced their faith and copulated with the Devil. The condemned women who regreted were strangulated before the burning while those whose behaviour was considered to be impertinent were mutilated and their members were exhibited.

Of course those crimes took place many years ago, but unfortunately the problem hasn’t disappeared. Aren’t there countries where innocent women or men are executed for crimes they haven’t commited? Is it fair to kill someone even if he’s a proven criminal? And what about the violence and the cruelty against prisoners? Watching the news these days it is easy to see that the problem of death penalty and torture is unsolved.


  1. I really like your post (good job!) and the way to open a new discussion but this discussion has a lot of things in the plate (religion, culture, history, ways of thinking…). Years ago, I watched an awesome documentary on TV; it is about how to kill people with death sentence in the most “humanitarian” way. It is a really really good documentary from 2008 from BBC, a programme called Horizon. If you are interested I put the links below:

    Video documentary (in English as obvious):
    Website from the programme:

  2. Unfortunately, death sentence is a way of murdering that still, nowadays, is being used to punish people. But, what really impresses me about this crime is the organizations who ‘has the right’ to put it into practice: the US government. I started watching the documentary and please! are they really trying to find out what´s the cleanest/ sweetest way to kill people? this is just, ridiculous!

    I´d like to remind you all that, two years ago, Obama got the Nobel Peace Prize.. Does it really make any sense? not for me, sorry.

  3. Thanks for your comments! I absolutely agree with you. Death penalty itself is a crime. I’m going to watch the documentary as soon as possible, even if it’s bound to get me down. Thank you!

  4. When I think about death penalty, I look my country, not others.
    I think in our Civil War. The most dramatic crime in our history. We were able to acuss our brother/neighbor/friend…. Death penalty for our family!!! Terrible. And it was recently.

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