Monthly Archives: May 2007


Propoganda– Mather’s narrative reads like religious propaganda.  The dying speeches of the repentant sound very crafted, calculated, and unauthentic.  It does not seem realistic for a servant to blame his misery after murdering his master on his earlier disobedience to … Continue reading

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Mather’s Sermon

1. Vengeance – Once condemned to death the criminal role, according to ministers, is one in which they must come to terms with their sin and repent. This is accomplished by acquiring a mindset where you are bent on vengeance … Continue reading

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Ch. 2 Foucault

Ambiguity: uncertainty, lack of absolute proof   “Full proof” could lead to any sentence, but in the 17th century, proof would have been hard to obtain. Their definition of full proof, however, was ambiguous: the testimony of 2 irreproachable witnesses … Continue reading

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second foucault reading

excessiveness – The most important factor of public punishment was the excessiveness that was employed whenever the punishment was enacted.  “excess of violence emploiyed is one of the elements of its glory:  the fact that the guilty man should moan … Continue reading

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pillars of salt

1 divine- Criminals were believed not to have only challenged the fundamental regulation of law but to have also challenged the sacred code of life that God preordained. By taking the life of a criminal they were accelerating the onset … Continue reading

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Pillars of Salt

Infallible: immune from error because of ties to the church or God   According to the introduction to Pillars of Salt, the Christian state was comfortable playing the role of God and revoking life. Those responsible for Morgan’s death described … Continue reading

Posted in divine, god, hierarchy, Infallible, performance, power, spectacle, theatrical | 1 Comment

foucalt chapter 2

1. truth – the aim of any justice system is to unearth the truth about the role of the accused in the crime committed. But the investigation for the truth did not always yield accurate “truths” because of the judicial … Continue reading

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Pillars of Salt

Humiliation- Humiliation, or loss of pride, took on two purposes. It was not only the stripping of dignity from the accused as part of the punishment, but for the onlookers, it was merely a form of entertainment. “New Englanders were … Continue reading

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pillars of salt

1. participate-to take part. pillars of salt does a thorough job of showing the individual participants in public executions and punishment. one, or maybe just me, would at first think the only true participant in an execution would be the … Continue reading

Posted in confession, conversion, death, pain, participate, torture | 1 Comment

foucault “the spectacle of the scaffold”

Truth- The justice system being described by Foucault has an interesting concept of truth and falsehood, guilt and innocence. It “did not obey a dualistic system: true or false, but a principle of continuous gradation” (42). In this way, minor … Continue reading

Posted in secrecy, spectacle, truth | 3 Comments