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The Other World: Spiritualism and Psychical Research in England, 1850-1914 [Paperback]

Janet Oppenheim
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
RRP: 35.99
Price: 32.46 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

26 Feb 1988
The Other World examines the public fascination with spiritualism and psychical research in Britain from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth century. It explores the variety of social background, education, and professional expertise that characterized the men and women who attended séances and investigated psychic phenomena, and it places them in the context of their times without ridiculing their beliefs. It is not concerned with the question of whether psychic phenomena are 'real', but rather attempts to understand the reasons why artisans, intellectuals, and aristocrats alike embraced spiritualism as a surrogate religion or endorsed psychical research as the science of the future. Whether self-educated workers, medical doctors, clergymen, housewives, university professors, journalists, comparative psychologists, or Nobel prize-winning physicists, they cannot be dismissed as cranks and eccentrics. Their efforts to mediate between the demands of science and the comforts of faith reflected anxieties central to the Victorian and Edwardian decades.

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The Other World: Spiritualism and Psychical Research in England, 1850-1914 + Immortal Longings: FWH Myers and the Victorian search for life after death
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Product details

  • Paperback: 532 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; New Ed edition (26 Feb 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 052134767X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521347679
  • Product Dimensions: 3.3 x 15.1 x 23.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 447,684 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

"This is a book of rich and complex texture dealing with important activities of Victorian and Edwardian society: spiritualism and physical research....a most stimulating study..." Journal of Modern History

Book Description

The Other World examines the public fascination with spiritualism and psychical research in Britain from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth century. It attempts to understand the reasons why artisans, intellectuals, and aristocrats alike embraced spiritualism as a surrogate religion or endorsed psychical research as the science of the future.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
"No study of the spiritualist boom in the second half of the nineteenth century would be complete without the mediums - the men, women, and children who claimed to function as channels of communication between the living and the dead." Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oppenheim's Masterwork 4 Sep 2011
By Jocko
Format:Paperback
There is, in a sense, very little point in a lengthy review of this extraordinary, remarkably comprehensive book. 19th century Spiritualism and psychical research are usually viewed as comic asides in the history of ideas. Oppenheim's "The Other World" was arguably the first scholarly book to treat either with respect and intellectual rigour. It remains wholly unchallenged as a profoundly insightful survey of the field, particularly strong in its biographical approach to the leading personalities. This is not a book of "amazing stories", nor partisan pleading or cheap laughs. It is a thoughtful assessment of an impressive body of work and workers, and one can only bitterly regret the author's tragically early death. It is, quite simply, indispensable reading for all students of the subject, and a fine, fine book.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A serius book about "The Other World" 26 Mar 2006
By Carlos A. F. Guimaraes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is one of the rare books that introduce in a balanced manner and without prejudices the heroic period of the studies of the human psyche and of the survival possibility after death just as searched by famous names as William Crookes, Charles Richet, Oliver Lodge, Fred Myers and any outhers...

An excellent work.
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