Implicit Voodoo: Electrodermal Activity Reveals a Susceptibility to Sympathetic Magic

Implicit Voodoo: Electrodermal Activity Reveals a Susceptibility to Sympathetic Magic © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2010 DOI: 10.1163/156853710X531258 Journal of Cognition and Culture 10 (2010) 391–399 brill.nl/jocc Implicit Voodoo: Electrodermal Activity Reveals a Susceptibility to Sympathetic Magic Bruce M. Hood a, * , Katherine Donnelly a , Ute Leonards a and Paul Bloom b a Bristol Cognitive Development Centre, School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol, 12a Priory Road, Bristol BS8 1TU, UK b Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA * Corresponding author, e-mail: bruce.hood@bristol.ac.uk Abstract Although young children might be uncertain about the nature of certain representations, most modern adults would explicitly maintain that photographs have no ongoing physical connection the objects that they depict. We demonstrate here in three studies that destruction of a photograph of a sentimental object produces significantly more electrodermal activity than destruction of photographs of other control objects. This response is not attributable to anxiety about being observed whilst destroying the picture, nor is it entirely due to simple visual association – the same response occurs when the photograph does not resemble the object. We suggest that this effect may reflect a tacit acceptance of “sympathetic magic”. Keywords Sympathetic magic, implicit arousal In sympathetic magical belief, objects are causally http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Cognition and Culture Brill

Implicit Voodoo: Electrodermal Activity Reveals a Susceptibility to Sympathetic Magic

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Publisher
BRILL
Copyright
© 2010 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1567-7095
eISSN
1568-5373
D.O.I.
10.1163/156853710X531258
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2010 DOI: 10.1163/156853710X531258 Journal of Cognition and Culture 10 (2010) 391–399 brill.nl/jocc Implicit Voodoo: Electrodermal Activity Reveals a Susceptibility to Sympathetic Magic Bruce M. Hood a, * , Katherine Donnelly a , Ute Leonards a and Paul Bloom b a Bristol Cognitive Development Centre, School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol, 12a Priory Road, Bristol BS8 1TU, UK b Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA * Corresponding author, e-mail: bruce.hood@bristol.ac.uk Abstract Although young children might be uncertain about the nature of certain representations, most modern adults would explicitly maintain that photographs have no ongoing physical connection the objects that they depict. We demonstrate here in three studies that destruction of a photograph of a sentimental object produces significantly more electrodermal activity than destruction of photographs of other control objects. This response is not attributable to anxiety about being observed whilst destroying the picture, nor is it entirely due to simple visual association – the same response occurs when the photograph does not resemble the object. We suggest that this effect may reflect a tacit acceptance of “sympathetic magic”. Keywords Sympathetic magic, implicit arousal In sympathetic magical belief, objects are causally

Journal

Journal of Cognition and CultureBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2010

Keywords: implicit arousal; Sympathetic magic

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