This lesson plan aligns with the episode “Tituba: The ‘Black Witch’ of Salem”

  • Content area: History/Early Americas + American Literature
  • Target audience: 11th/12th grade or undergraduate survey
  • Suggested length: three periods

Standards/Objectives: At the conclusion of these three lessons, student should be able to:

  • Identify the historical context of the 1692 witch panic in Salem, Massachusetts
  • Recognize the uncertainty surrounding Tituba’s race, ethnicity, and origin as presented in primary and secondary literature sources
  • Analyze Arthur Miller’s motivations in writing “The Crucible,” the play’s context within the McCarthyism of 1950s America, and how Miller’s use of literary tropes and allusions shaped his depiction of Tituba
  • Trace how conceptions of Tituba’s role in the witch panic and agency within her community have been understood and claimed by specific groups throughout history
  • Critique the disparity between what is known of the historical Tituba and her portrayal as a means to explain the “irrationality” of the witch panic in Salem

Click here for the full lesson plan and materials, including primary source analysis activities, discussion questions and more.

Lesson plan created by Hanna Van Reed