Mattering the Invisible: Technologies, Bodies, and the Realm of the Spectral | BERGHAHN BOOKS
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Mattering the Invisible: Technologies, Bodies, and the Realm of the Spectral

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Mattering the Invisible

Technologies, Bodies, and the Realm of the Spectral

Edited by Diana Espírito Santo and Jack Hunter

272 pages, 6 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-80073-066-3 $135.00/£99.00 / Hb / Published (May 2021)

eISBN 978-1-80073-067-0 eBook

View CartYour country: - edit Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format)Recommend to your LibraryAvailable in GOBI®


Mattering the Invisible has much to offer religious studies scholars by exemplifying and expanding the possibilities of what constitutes material culture.” • Nova Religio

“The volume brings together a heterogenous and international group of scholars who present a wealth of information of different practices of mattering the invisible… makes a significant contribution to anthropology, and offers innovative contributions to those interested in media studies, materiality, science and technology studies.” • Marcelo Moura Mello, Federal University of Bahia


Exploring how technological apparatuses “capture” invisible worlds, this book looks at how spirits, UFOs, discarnate entities, spectral energies, atmospheric forces and particles are mattered into existence by human minds. Technological and scientific discourse has always been central to the nineteenth- and early twentieth-century spiritualist quest for legitimacy, but as this book shows, machines, people, and invisible beings are much more ontologically entangled in their definitions and constitution than we would expect. The book shows this entanglement through a series of contemporary case studies where the realm of the invisible arises through technological engagement, and where the paranormal intertwines with modern technology.

Diana Espírito Santo currently works as Associate Professor at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. She has published many articles and has co-edited four volumes, including The Social Life of Spirits (2013, University of Chicago Press) with Ruy Blanes.

Jack Hunter is an Honorary Research Fellow with the Religious Experience Research Centre and a tutor with the Sophia Centre, both at University of Wales Trinity Saint David. He is the author of Spirits, Gods and Magic (2020, August Night Press) and Engaging the Anomalous (2018, August Night Press).

Subject: Anthropology (General)Media Studies


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