The Haunting of America

The Haunting of America

From the Salem Witch Trials to Harry Houdini

Book - 2009
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In the tradition of their Haunting of the Presidents, national bestselling authors Joel Martin and William J. Birnes write The Haunting of America: From The Salem Witch Trials to Harry Houdini, the only book to tell the story of how paranormal events influenced and sometimes even drove political events. In a narrative retelling of American history that begins with the Salem Witch Trials of the seventeenth century, Martin and Birnes unearth the roots of America's fascination with the ghosts, goblins, and demons that possess our imaginations and nightmares. The authors examine the political history of the United States through the lens of the paranormal and investigate the spiritual events that inspired public policy: channelers and meduims who have advised presidents, UFOs that frightened the nation's military into launching nuclear bomber squadrons toward the Soviet Union, out-of-body experiencers deployed to gather sensitive intelligence on other countries, and even spirits summoned to communicate with living politicians.

The Haunting of America is a thrilling exploration of the often unexpected influences of the paranormal on science, medicine, law, government, the military, psychology, theology, death and dying, spirituality, and pop culture.

Publisher: New York : Forge, ©2009.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780765313812
Characteristics: 400 pages ;,25 cm.
Additional Contributors: Martin, Joel 1945-


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VaughanPLMichael Nov 04, 2018

Well that was as misleading as a non-fiction book can get.

I expected historian haunts and a bit of the paranormal spooky atmosphere. What I got was a barrel of monkey conspiracy theories that lead no where.

I like a good conspiracy theory as much as the next guy, but not when I came for Historical Haunts, especially with a title as 'The Haunting of America'.

I made if through the first 5 pages of the first chapter before I realized there were no ghost stories or haunting and skipped right on to the Salem Witch Trials. Lucky for Joel, Salem is a personal fascination of mine, so I stuck around for that chapter. But after Salem, it just devolved into paranormal paranoia. I tried a few pages from other chapters to find more and more of the same.

In the end, I just couldn't finish it. The writing style wasn't inviting and each chapter eventually becomes more and more ridiculous in the stretches the author has to go through to fit the paranormal claim.

Nov 05, 2013

Don't judge a book by it's title. Nothing in this book had anything to do with "Hauntings" it was primarily about Spiritualism, which like the fad that it was in the 1800's my interest in the topic faded as I read more of the book. The only bright spot is the chapter dealing with Abraham Lincoln.

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