Tuesday Talks: Paranormal Activity – An Introduction to Anomalistic Psychology

13 Aug 2013

Ever since records began, in every known society, a substantial proportion of the population has reported unusual experiences many of which we would today label as “paranormal”.

Opinion polls show that the majority of the general public accepts that paranormal phenomena do occur. Such widespread experience of and belief in the paranormal can only mean one of two things. The paranormal is real, in which case this should be accepted by the wider scientific community, which currently rejects such claims, or else belief in and experience of apparent paranormal phenomena can be fully explained in terms of psychological factors.

Tue 13 Aug 2013, 7 - 9pm
The White Building
Unit 7, Queens Yard, White Post Lane, E9 5EN

This presentation provided an introduction to the sub-discipline of anomalistic psychology, which may be defined as the study of extraordinary phenomena of behaviour and experience, in an attempt to provide non-paranormal explanations in terms of known psychological and physical factors. This approach will be illustrated with examples relating to a range of paranormal phenomena.

Professor Chris French is the Head of the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit in the Psychology Department at Goldsmiths, University of London. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, as well as being a Distinguished Supporter of the British Humanist Association and a member of the Scientific and Professional Advisory Board of the British False Memory Society. He writes for the Guardian and The Skeptic magazine which, for more than a decade, he also edited.