- Title Pages
- Introduction: The myth of 10% and other Tall Tales about the mind and the brain
- Chapter 1 Cognitive factors underlying paranormal beliefs and experiences
- Chapter 2 Critically thinking about paranormal belief
- Chapter 3 The magic in the brain: how conjuring works to deceive our minds
- Chapter 4 The legend of the magical number seven
- Chapter 5 Setting the record (or video camera) straight on memory: the video camera model of memory and other memory myths
- Chapter 6 The myth of the incredible eyewitness
- Chapter 7 We have got the whole child witness thing figured out, or have we?
- Chapter 8 Is bigger really better? The search for brain size and intelligence in the twenty-first century
- Chapter 9 Biology and intelligence—the race/IQ controversy
- Chapter 10 The Mozart effect: it's time to face the music!
- Chapter 11 The powers and perils of intuition
- Chapter 12 Creative thinking: the mystery myth
- Chapter 13 The more, the merrier: facts and beliefs about the bilingual mind
- Chapter 14 The merry vibes of Wintzer: the tale of foreign accent syndrome
- Chapter 15 Talking with the dead, communicating with the future and other myths created by cold reading
- Chapter 16 Graphology—a total write-off
- Chapter 17 The truth about deception
- Chapter 18 The dual-brain myth
- Chapter 19 The neurology of the weird: brain states and anomalous experience
- Chapter 20 The myth of the clonable human brain
- Chapter 21 Out on a limb: neglect and confabulation in the study of aplasic phantoms
- Chapter 22 Imagery and blindness
- Chapter 23 Something wicked this way comes: causes and interpretations of sleep paralysis
- Chapter 24 The power of the full moon. Running on empty?
- Chapter 25 Ouija, dowsing and other seductions of ideomotor action
- Chapter 26 Inducing out-of-body experiences
- Chapter 27 Can mind conquer cancer?
- Chapter 28 The elusive search for a ‘gay gene’
- Chapter 29 To sleep, perchance to REM? The rediscovered role of emotion and meaning in dreams
Can mind conquer cancer?
Can mind conquer cancer?
- (p.440) Chapter 27 Can mind conquer cancer?
- Tall Tales about the Mind and Brain
Barry L. Beyerstein
Wallace I. Sampson
- Oxford University Press
Given the weakness of the case for psychological contributions to the onset and alleviation of cancer, this chapter asks what has kept the notion alive so long. Once again, it appears that the appeal of implausible ideas and unlikely findings is embedded in the social milieu of the times, the so-called ‘Zeitgeist’. The popular resurgence of comforting beliefs in the miraculous powers of the mind spilled over from New Age, postmodernist circles to affect thinking in many areas of academia. While research has demonstrated that psychological factors play a larger role in many diseases than most medical researchers once thought, the extension of these findings to the mechanisms of cancer turns out to have been overly enthusiastic. These trends and some researchers were swept along by the mentalistic revival.
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