Superstitions and Magical Thinking

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Most superstitions are examples of basic patterns of thinking, which postulate mystical interconnections and causations in nature. In this talk such patterns of thinking are explored, shown to be based in six distinct principles, and explained with reference to a number of different superstitions collected by Dr. Stevens – and provided by the audience (bring along your favorites!). Such principles are universal, found in all cultures and periods of history and prehistory, which suggests that they represent fundamental ways in which the brain works.

Instructor: Phillips Stevens, PhD, Associate Professor of Anthropology Emeritus, University at Buffalo

*This is a recording of the live streaming session that took place on July 9, 2020.