Fire · History Thursday

No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

My NaNo, FIRE, is inspired a lot by inquisition trials, which is sort of unsurprising, given how much I love them. (Reading about them, I mean, not the actual trials. Which doesn’t actually sound all that much better, now that I think about it.)

Naturally, this led me to watch the greatest piece of television the world has been gifted with, over and over and over again:

Back in the day, I took a liberal studies class on the Spanish Inquisition as an elective. (Basically, it was sort of a cross between an English class, a cultural studies class, and a history class – we read literature from the time period; studied art, music, religious philosophy, etc.; and then put it all into the historical context by studying a ton of primary sources. If I hadn’t been a history major, this probably would’ve been my next choice.) There was also one day in class we spent watching this sketch, and analyzing it as a critique of the Inquisition. For example, the overall ridiculousness of the situations presented in the sketch, can be view as a critique of just how ridiculous the Inquisition was – people were accused based on the barest of circumstantial evidence, and guilt was assumed. The whole bit with the pillows and the comfy chair – well, actual inquisitorial torture was sort of pointless, since people would often say what the torturers wanted to hear, just to make it stop.

I have to say, even though I took that class on a whim, it’s definitely one of the most memorable ones I had at Western. It was really fascinating to learn not just about the Inquisition, but also about the whole culture surrounding it, and how it impacted people at the most basic levels of society.

Currently Listening To: Nsync – “Pop”
Currently Reading: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

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