Things That Go Bump In The Literature: An Environmental Appraisal of 'Haunted Houses'

Drinkwater, Kenneth, Dagnall, Neil, OKeeffe, Ciaran, Ventola, Annalisa, Laythe, Brian, Massullo, Brandon, Caputo, Giovanni, Jawer, Michael and Houran, James (2020) Things That Go Bump In The Literature: An Environmental Appraisal of 'Haunted Houses'. Conscious Research, 11 (1328). 0-0. ISSN 1664-1078

18003_OKeeffe_C.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Our review of the past 20-years of research on anomalous experiences attributed to “haunted houses” revealed a paucity of studies on environmental factors posited as conscious-stimulants or unconscious-stimulants of percipients. To date, most research in this domain has considered six ambient variables: embedded (static) cues, lighting levels, air quality, temperature, infrasound, and electromagnetic fields. Their relation to the onset or structure of witness reports showed mostly null, though sometimes inconsistent or weak effects. However, such research is in its infancy and new designs are needed to account better for environmental and architectural phenomenology. Future research should therefore explore four issues: (i) more consistent and precise measurements of discrete ambient variables; (ii) the potential role of “Gestalt influences” that involve holistic or collective environmental effects; (iii) individual differences in attentional or perceptual sensitivities of witnesses to environmental variables; and (iv) the role of attitudinal and normative influences in the interpretation of environmental stimuli. In this way, investigators can elucidate more robustly the explanatory power of evolutionary-environmental models for these anomalous episodes and related phenomena.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Ghost, Haunt, Anomalous Experiences, Environmental Sensitivities, Phenomenology
Depositing User: RED Unit Admin
Date Deposited: 05 May 2020 08:23
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2020 08:07

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item