Paper Title

[2.1] Mesmerism, Animal Magnetism, and Christian Science: Trance-Based Healing in Nineteenth Century America

Location

Arts & Education Building 164, Moderated by Brenda Smith

Start Date

18-1-2019 2:00 PM

End Date

18-1-2019 3:15 PM

Disciplines

History

Presentation Type

Presentation

Abstract

Mesmerism and its various subcategories and related practices of trance-based healing saw a wild spread of popularity in the United States in the nineteenth century. This included the extraordinary growth of the Christian Science movement, whose longevity far outstripped that of other, similar movements. This paper discusses the attitudes of Americans toward these practices, and shows that mesmerism and similar practices enjoyed such popularity in America because they filled a need for individual control which had been created by America’s transition to modernity.

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Jan 18th, 2:00 PM Jan 18th, 3:15 PM

[2.1] Mesmerism, Animal Magnetism, and Christian Science: Trance-Based Healing in Nineteenth Century America

Arts & Education Building 164, Moderated by Brenda Smith

Mesmerism and its various subcategories and related practices of trance-based healing saw a wild spread of popularity in the United States in the nineteenth century. This included the extraordinary growth of the Christian Science movement, whose longevity far outstripped that of other, similar movements. This paper discusses the attitudes of Americans toward these practices, and shows that mesmerism and similar practices enjoyed such popularity in America because they filled a need for individual control which had been created by America’s transition to modernity.