What ways does the nature of each source shape its usefulness?

Choose one of the two primary sources and one of the four secondary sources listed below:


Primary sources (for both see course reserves site, “The Witchcraft Trials of Paula de Eguiluz”)


  1. Excerpts from Inquisition trial of Paula de Eguiluz
  2. Excerpts from Inquistion trial of Luiz da Costa


Secondary sources (links to these journal articles are posted in Weeks 11-14 readings folder)


  1. Wadsworth, “Jurema and Batuque: Indians, Africans, and the Inquisition …”
  2. Redekopp, “Queering Sodomy: Interpreting the Trial of Luiz da Costa”
  3. Surtz, “Morisco Women, Written Texts, and the Valencia Inquisition”
  4. Goodman, “Intellectual Life under the Spanish Inquisition”


Paper assignment: In a properly formatted, short paper of 1,200-1,300 words, not including footnotes, apply your understanding of the uses of and distinctions between primary and secondary sources to a comparison of the two sources you have selected as sources of knowledge for the history of the Inquisition.  What does each offer with relation to understanding the history of the Inquisition and in what ways does the nature of each source shape its usefulness?  In thinking about primary and secondary sources you should revisit “How to Read a Primary Source” and might also wish to consult this University of Maryland website, which further clarifies the distinctions by adding a third category: tertiary sources.


The paper, worth 20% of the final grade, is due at the beginning of the final exam on Monday, Dec. 14.  You will be permitted to consult the paper during that exam, an in-class writing exercise worth 10% of the final grade.  When finished the exam, you will hand in the paper and the in-class writing.


Notes on formatting and style: Double-space your paper and use Times New Roman 12-point font.  Include a title page.  Number your pages beginning with the first page of text, not the title page.  Cite your sources as necessary in footnotes using Chicago Style (see hand-out provided in class).  Minimum ten percent deduction for failure to address these guidelines adequately.


Formatting footnotes: MS Word contains a function which enables you to insert a footnote number in the proper place in the text of your essay and a corresponding number at the bottom of the page where you can enter the required information.  Footnotes should be numbered sequentially and the function does this for you.

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