Saturday, March 1, 2014
Book Review for Paranormality
Author: Prof. Richard Wiseman
Published: 2012 by Pan Books
Amazon Order Info
Paranormality is a delightful foray into the processes of why we as humans tend to believe in certain paranormal concepts when good science keeps showing us that these things cannot possible exist. Obviously, this is a biased, one-sided argument, but its extremely well done. Most books in this genre tend to be extremely condescending and downright hateful to anyone who dares believe there is more out there than meets the eye, but with Paranormality, Professor Wiseman has managed to present the information and arguments factually and simply. He doesn't make a lot of personal judgments against those who do believe...just states the research and the conclusions. It's full of such excellent academic research, but presented in a way that anyone can easily understand it, no matter what his/her educational background may be.
And although you could classify it as a science book, it's less of a critique about the hard science of the paranormal, meaning the physics, the chemistry, the geology, etc. behind natural occurrences that can be construed as paranormal. It's more about the psychology behind how and why we perceive things to be paranormal, and why we hold so tightly to those beliefs despite evidence against them. Sprinkled throughout the text are demonstrations and experiments the reader can try for himself to illustrate the points shown through the academic studies. An even cooler feature of the book is the QR codes. If you have a smartphone or tablet handy, you can scan the code directly from the book and be taken to video demonstrations and interviews (there's a website address below for those who don't have a device to scan the codes).
Obviously, I have to recommend this to my colleagues in the paranormal field. No matter where one's beliefs may lie, being well read in a variety of books examining ALL sides of the debate is crucial to being the best researcher and investigator one can be; you can never have too much information. I'd also highly recommend this particular title to anyone studying psychology since it really is a psychological survey with some awesome psychology studies used to illustrate the concepts presented.
Check it out. Try the demonstrations and watch the videos. You won't be disappointed!
Okay, wow, lol. In looking up the Amazon ordering information, the copy of the book I have (linked above) is selling for over $30 new AND used. That is way more than the $5 I paid for it on Book Outlet. Apparently, there is another edition (its the same book but with a different subtitle and cover) which is going for a MUCH more affordable price on Amazon. I've linked to it here: Paranormality-Why We See What Isn't There.