Supersense: From Superstition to Religion - The Brain Science of Belief
Hood (Bruce)
This Page provides (where held) the Abstract of the above Book and those of all the Papers contained in it.
Colour-ConventionsDisclaimerNotes Citing this Book


Cover Blurb

  1. If someone gave you £20, would you put on a jumper owned by Fred West? Do you cross your fingers, touch wood or avoid walking under ladders? If someone offered to replace your old teddy bear with an exact replica, would you accept?
  2. Where do such feelings come from? It seems that human brains have to make sense of the world somehow, and that need to find an explanation can lead our minds beyond reason and into the supernatural. Education tells us such thinking is irrational, but at an intuitive level it can stubbornly persist in otherwise sensible adults. Barack Obama played basketball the morning of his victory in the Iowa primary - and on the morning of every following primary. This is not all bad - these beliefs can be a useful glue that binds us together as a society. And creative types rely upon the ability to see patterns in the world.
  3. Combining brilliant insight with witty example, Bruce Hood weaves a page-turning account of our 'supersense', navigating a path through brain science, child development, popular culture, mental illness and the paranormal.
  4. 'Reading SuperSense is like having lunch with your favourite professor - the conversation spans religion, biology, psychology, philosophy, and early childhood development. One thing is for sure, you'll never see the world in the same way again.' Ori Brafman, New York Times bestselling author of Sway.
  5. An intriguing look at a feature of the human mind that is subtle in its operation but profound in its consequences - Steven Pinker
Amazon Reviews
  1. A fascinating, timely and important book. Bruce Hood’s presentation of the science behind our supersense is crystal clear and utterly engaging ....perhaps the millions who read and loved "Dawkins (Richard) - The God Delusion" can also read and learn to love Supersense; New Scientist
  2. A fascinating cornucopia of weird and strange stories and incidents that combine to present both a physiological and psychological case for the human instinct to need to believe. I would thoroughly recommend this book - Stephen Woolley
  3. Marvelous … chock full of real-world examples reinforced by experimental research, Hood builds a theoretical model to explain how the mind comes to sense that there is something beyond the natural world, something supernatural …. This book is an important contribution to the psychological literature that is revealing the actuality of our very irrational human nature - Michael Shermer, Science
  4. A fun and thought-provoking read … you will find something here to challenge the way you see yourself and others - BBC Focus magazine
  5. A fascinating and readable book, and one of the best books on the subject of why everyone sometimes believes weird things - Fortean Times
    Prologue: Why Do We Demolish Evil Houses? – 1
  1. What Secret Do John McEnroe and David Beckham Share? – 15
  2. CouldYou Wear a Killer's Cardigan? – 36
  3. Who Created Creationism? – 52
  4. Blooming, Buzzing Babies – 87
  5. Mind Reading for Beginners – 121
  6. Freak Accidents – 149
  7. Would You Willingly Receive a Heart Transplant1 from a Murderer? – 180
  8. Why Do Travelling Salesmen Sleep with Teddy Bears? – 209
  9. The Biology of Belief – 236
  10. WouldYou Let Your Wife Sleep with Robert Redford? – 264
    Reader's Notes – 271
    Acknowledgments – 281
    Source Notes – 283
    Index – 315

Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2019
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)

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