The Founders of Psychical Research: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Founders of Psychical Research

1st Edition

By Alan Gauld


398 pages

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Paperback: 9780367182878
pub: 2020-08-14
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Originally published in 1968 The Founders of Psychical Research is centred upon the lives and work of Henry Sidgwick, Edmund Gurney and Frederic Myers – prominent in the Society for Psychical Research (S.P.R) - during its early years: it is not a history of the Society. It passes over important aspects of the S.P.R.’s story and deals at some length with matters quite outside it. The book frequently gives accounts of ‘paranormal’ phenomena which if indeed they occurred, would not be explainable through any recognisable hypothesis, but are treated throughout as unexplained.

Table of Contents



Part I: The Origins and Founders of Psychical Research

1. The Rise of Modern Spiritualism in America 1848-55

2. Spiritualism in England 1852-76

4. Early Investigations of the Sidgwick Group 1873-5

5. The Foundation of the Society for Psychical Research 1882

Part II: The Work of the Early Psychical Researchers

6. Edmund Gurney and Phantasms of the Living

7. Phantasms of the Dead

8. Eusapia

9. The Mental Mediums

10. Myer’s Theory of the Subliminal Self

11. Myer’s Cosmology and Theory of the Soul

12. The Turn of the Century


Appendix A: Early Experiments on Thought-transference Published by the S.P.R.

Appendix B: Critics of Mrs. Piper

Appendix C: Correspondence between Myers and Lord Acton on the Canons of Evidence to be Applied to Reports of ‘Miraculous’ Occurrences


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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
RELIGION / General