Tag Archives | Liminal Analytics

Two Talks on Parapsychology from George Hansen, Author of The Trickster and the Paranormal

Photographer Shannon Taggart and Liminal Analytics: Applied Research Collaborative recently hosted George Hansen, author of the seminal Trickster and the Paranormal, for a series of talks at the Observatory in Brooklyn, NY. For those who were unable to attend in person, the talks are now available on Youtube!

Hansen offers a succinct appraisal of the history of psychical inquiry, as well as an analysis of the decline of professional parapsychology over the past few decades. His insights into the social factors that attend anomalous phenomena provide an interesting avenue for understanding this area of experience that goes beyond black and white questions of proof, and into a more complex and inclusive vision of what happens when things drift into the unstable realms of weirdness.

A History of Parapsychology and Psychical Research

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The Trickster Comes to NYC – George Hansen at the Observatory

George Hansen - Trickster and the ParanormalMy friend George Hansen has a pretty succinct biography:

George P. Hansen was professionally employed in parapsychology laboratories for eight years—three at the Rhine Research Center in Durham, North Carolina, and five at Psychophysical Research Laboratories in Princeton, New Jersey. His experiments included remote viewing, card guessing, ganzfeld, electronic random number generators, séance phenomena, and ghosts. He has been active in a number of psychic, UFO, and New Age organizations, and he helped found a skeptics group.

His papers in scientific journals cover mathematical statistics, fraud and deception, the skeptics movement, conjurors in parapsychology, and exposés of hoaxes. He is a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians.

Reading all that you’re given no clues to the fact that his book The Trickster and the Paranormal offers one of the most detailed examinations of the psycho-social factors of anomalous experiences written in the 20th century. That little bit about “his experiments included…” actually means he has spent the last few decades doing ethnographic immersion in the entire field of psychical and anomalous research.… Read the rest

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