Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking

Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking

Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking

Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking

Synopsis

Updating and expanding the materials from the first edition, Anomalistic Psychology, Second Edition integrates and systematically treats phenomena of human consciousness and behaviors that appear to violate the laws of nature. The authors present and detail a new explanatory concept they developed that provides a naturalistic interpretation for these phenomena -- Magical Thinking. For undergraduate and graduate students and professionals in cognitive psychology, research methods, thinking, and parapsychology.

Excerpt

A decade ago we prepared the first edition of the present text because we felt there was a need to present to our students a systematic and scientifically respectable account of anomalistic psychological phenomena--those behavioral and experiential phenomena that seem to violate natural laws. Except for an occasional discussion of parapsychology, the introductory texts offered little, if anything, along these lines, and other textbooks were likewise silent on these matters. Yet, as every psychology instructor who has taught the introductory course knows, it is precisely these phenomena that guarantee the undivided attention of the class.

The term anomalistic psychology was first used in the 1980 edition of this book and in the title of a symposium held at the 1980 meeting of the American Psychological Association. (A second one was held in 1984.) We thought of anomalistic psychology as an aspect of general psychology that was coextensive with it but merited special attention (and a special name). Our text was accordingly organized in a manner similar to that of an introductory psychology text, each chapter covering one of the ways in which humans learn about the world, perceive it, think about it, and otherwise interact with it.

Our view of the place of anomalistic psychology within the field of psychology remains unchanged, and in this second edition we have not only retained the original general outline but have emphasized it: For instance, the material that appeared in the first edition under the heading Parapsychology now appears in the chapter on Information Processing. All chapters have been updated. The major change, however, has been the inclusion of a chapter on magical thinking and the consistent and explicit reference to it of the entire gamut of relevant behaviors, experiences, and phenomena. Magical thinking . . .

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