Science and Magic in the Modern World is a unique text that explores the role of magical thinking in everyday life. It provides an excellent psychological look at the subconscious belief in magic in both popular culture and society, as well as experimental research that considers human consciousness as a derivative of belief in the supernatural, thus showing that our feelings, emotions, attitudes and other psychological processes follow the laws of magic.
This book synthesises the science of ‘natural’ phenomena and the magic of the ‘supernatural’ to present an interesting look at the juxtaposition of the inner and outer selves. Fusing research into psychological disorders, subconscious feelings, as well as the rising presence of artificial intelligence, this book demonstrates how an engagement with magical thinking can enhance one’s creativity and cognitive skills.
Science and Magic in the Modern World is an invaluable resource for those studying consciousness, as well as those looking at the effect of magical thinking on religion, politics, science and society.
Eugene Subbotsky is one of the most forward-thinking intellectuals of our time. In this provocative and far-reaching text, he draws upon 40 years of research on magical thinking in both children and adults to develop his thesis: that magic and magical thinking are inseparable from our daily and worldly existence. He uses this thesis to explain concepts ranging from video game addiction to schizophrenia, from art history to advertising, and from placebo effects to suicide bombers. This book will cause readers to reconsider any notions that magic is but a fleeting childhood pastime. Professor Jacqueline D. Woolley, The University of Texas, USA
Eugene Subbotsky has written a thoroughly engaging and thought-provoking book on magic and the supernatural. He combines psychology, neuroscience and philosophy to demonstrate how magic, the supernatural and magical beliefs play a surprisingly important role in many unexpected areas of our lives. Science and Magic in the Modern World, challenges many popular misconceptions about magic, and it will transform your thoughts and beliefs about magic. This book deals with challenging and complex theoretical issues, but its style and writing make it a thoroughly enjoyable reading experience. Dr. Gustav Kuhn, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK
Part I. Magic in the Mind
Chapter 1. The Magic Crystal of Rene Magritte: Art as a Window in the Supernatural
Chapter 2. The Invisible reality: Consciousness as a Gaze in the Magical World
Chapter 3. The Barrier for Robots. Subjective Experience as a Magical Phenomenon
Part II. The Supernatural in Science and Religion
Chapter 4. Miracles in Law: Magical Underpinning of Physical Universe
Chapter 5. The Pull of Eternity: Hope for Immortality as the Belief in the
Chapter 6. Religion and the Belief in the Supernatural
Part III. Magical thinking in Politics, Economics and Education
Chapter 7. Under the Spell: The Case of Russia
Chapter 8. Watching the Impossible: Educational Effects of Magical Thinking
Chapter 9. Games with the Supernatural: Magical Reality in Everyday Life
Epilogue: Imagining the Unimaginable