Posts

PEM Event, "Witch Trials and Salem Then and Now"

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 Last month, I had the pleasure of joining a panel hosted by Dan Lipcan of the Phillips Library and moderated by public historian Kristin Harris about the legacies of the Salem Witch Trials.  There are many events in Salem around Halloween that invoke, in one way or another, the witch hysteria that tore Salem apart in 1692 and led to the execution of 29 people.  This one, however, was different.  With Fara Wolfson from Voices Against Injustice and Erica Feldmann, who started HausWitch Home + Healing as part store, part community center and informal educational hub for 21st century witches,  Harris invited us to explore what the history of Salem means and how contemporary pa gans, wiccans and witches in Salem and around the world orient towards the town and its most celebrated holiday, Halloween.     You can watch the presentation here .  Be sure to let me know what you think.    

Book Talk at Wistariahurst Museum on Derry City

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 The lovely people at Wistariahurst invited me to talk about Derry City and people got to jump in and ask questions, which was really fun.  The talk is a little different, though obvs the themes are the same! Let me know what you think! Also, until December 7, 2020, my book is 40% with free shipping using the code: 14GIVEBKS here .

Book Talk at the Malden Public Library on Zoom September 3, 2020

  Want to hear more about my book?  You can watch an author talk here . Want to purchase the book?  Enter promo code in the shopping cart to redeem 40% off your purchase and free shipping: 14APSA20 if you want to purchase the book!

Two Civil Rights Leaders at the Pearly Gates

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It is rare that I speculate about the after life and rarer still that I anthropomorphize it, but I suppose childhood visions of heaven get stuck in our heads.   I amused myself while trying to fall asleep last night with this vision. The line-up was longer than usual at check-in, due to COVID-19 and the sheer psychic exhaustion of 2020.  C.T. Vivian and John Lewis stood in the line and were enjoying a catch-up when someone shuffled up behind them. "Yes, lads. What are we at?" Their first reaction was alarm.  Lads??????  They turned around slowly.  "Oh, it's OK.  It's just John Hume from Derry. Great to see you, John."   "Good to see youse both." As they began with pleasantries fit for men of their situation (Do you think they'll have baps/fritters/fifteens/fill-in-the-blank -- because the doctor has had me on a scarcity diet for the past two decades.....,) they were interrupted by a call from an ambient loudspeaker inviting "Joh

Strawberry Queen

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In case you missed it on Historians Cooking the Past , I am posting my essay about my mom,  Janice Weigand Shea, here. June 30, 2020 If he had a tail, my father's would have been wagging. He would dash from wherever he was when the car approached the driveway and stand at the screen door, waiting. "Here she comes! All hail the Strawberry Queen!" My mother emerged from the shadows into the flourescent light of the garage, smile and sneer competing on her face as she kicked off muddy construction boots. "Oh, please." Still, she liked the title. Returning from a 16-hour work day at the pick-your-own strawberry farm she managed with fields in Plainville, Hamden and North Haven, Connecticut, she'd kiss him hello and head to the shower, first peeling off dirt-encrusted jeans and a tee shirt with a big red strawberry on it. My dad would bring her a cocktail or an icy glass of white wine and heat up

My Coronavirus Cooking

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Photo credit: Phillipa Stanton I love to cook.  It will come as no surprise to most readers that my response to the suspension of ordinary life in the face of a public health emergency is to retreat to the kitchen and to experience and process this moment through and with food.  Over the next few weeks (or months,) I will be posting images of what I am cooking along with a short reflection on how the food relates to what is happening in my head and in the world. Am I fiddling while Rome burns?  Yes, of course.  I know this.  It is human, though, to try to retain control in spheres where we can, and to nourish ourselves and our loved ones...... The posts are in chronological order, with the most recent post appearing first.  It got difficult to continue to update this, so it is pretty dated.  AUGUST 3, 2020 Fresh Fruit Tarts Three months gone.  Just like that.  For all of that time, my energy around cooking, baking and writing was focused on Historians Cooking the Past

Nancy MacLean to come to Salem State March 5, 2020

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I am so excited for this event!