Social Science of Ghosts

Social Science of Ghosts

Social science studies show that different cultures have varying beliefs about ghosts. Some of these stories serve a purpose, such as passing on cultural beliefs, and other stories have inadvertent effects, such as stories of ghosts near water that appear at particular times, which can lead to lower rates of drowning. Hearing stories of the paranormal are more likely to lead to reports of unusual events. This shows how social influences impact on how people understand the meaning of ghosts.

Why does this matter? Like studies on gossip, social science research on how ideas spread are a good way of demonstrating how social influence works. Culture and authority impacts on how information travels through society, or an organisation, even about trivial matters such as ghosts!


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