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What the Reviewers Are Saying. . .

"George Hansen’s The Trickster and the Paranormal (Xlibris 2001) is a mammoth examination of the boundaries between the natural and the supernatural . . . an important and thought-provoking approach to the study of the paranormal.  In addition to his examination of ufological events, he applies his theory of the trickster archetype to psychics, debunking organizations like CSICOP, and government disinformation programs."

A. J. Gulyas

UFO Magazine
(Vol. 20, No. 4, August-September 2005, pp. 29-30)


"after seven years of writing and research, Hansen has unleashed his ambitious and scholarly tome examining the current state of ufological, paranormal, and psychic research...Hansen's most significant contribution, however, is his thorough and comprehensive examination of the vast array of forces which have aligned themselves to keep ufology marginal.  It is arguably the best analysis of its kind ever written."

David Perkins

(September 2002, pp. 18-19)


"It is an accomplished effort to situate the problematic of psi in the context of some leading currents of modern thought, drawing liberally on the ideas of Max Weber, Victor Turner, structuralists, deconstructionists, anthropology, philosophy, and a good deal more. . . Hansen uses short sentences and has a knack for clarifying opaque and recondite ideas"

Michael Grosso

Journal of Parapsychology
(Vol. 66, No. 2, June 2002, pp. 197-202)


"This incredibly comprehensive book . . . is well worth the time spent.  Hansen has shown the connection among many seemingly disparate concepts.  If you want to learn as muuch as can be absorbed about paranormal events, this book is the place to go . . . This is an excellent book to have as a reference for one's library."

Donald R. Morse

Journal of Religion and Psychical Research
(Vol. 26, No. 4, October 2003, pp. 236-237)


"It's rare for an author to take the position of what we might call Schrodinger's Fortean, in which one can study the field simultaneously from within and without, thus gaining an intimate understanding of the unusual, often bizarre dynamics of our chosen arena, while also being aware of its relationship to the wider culture . . . Hansen's conclusions . . . are sure to be as refreshing and controversial for the hard-nosed sceptic as they are for the literalist believer."

Mark Pilkington

Fortean Times
(Issue No. 175, 2003, pp. 40-410)


"What does this have to do with “magic” as we know it?  Oh my, it seems to have everything to do with it...I predict that most magicians will ignore this book; those who do not may well find it both provocative and stimulating."

Phil Willmarth

The Linking Ring [Monthly magazine of the 
International Brotherhood of Magicians]
(December 2002, pp. 131-132)


"He argues that the paranormal is intrinsically liminal, and so leads to chaos, fraud, and incompatibility with established institutions . . . skeptics can accept this easily"

Martin Bridgstock

Skeptical Inquirer
(July/August 2003, pp. 51-52)


"This is an important book for the Society for Scientific Exploration and its membership.  It is important because it addresses key underlying reasons for the risks and difficulties faced by scientists (especially), who are compelled by scientific curiosity and an explorer's drive to study anomalies, and especially those anomalies classed as paranormal."

L. David Leiter
Journal of Scientific Exploration
(Vol. 16, No. 4, Winter 2002, pp. 695-697)

"a dispassionate look at the very complex relationship between, for example, stage magic which is trickery; the psychic, which sometimes (but not always) involves trickery; UFOs, etc."

James W. Moseley

Saucer Smear
(Vol. 48, No. 10, December 1st, 2001, p. 5)


"In this far-ranging 564-page tome, Hansen takes a penetrating look at the state of current UFO, psi and paranormal research.  His observations and descriptions of the various schisms within the research community will no doubt raise the hackles on some and bring nods of approval from others . . . George Hansen has written one of the most relevant and thought provoking books in recent memory."

David Perkins

(No. 80, January 2003, pp. 10-14)
(Also translated and published in 
La Nave de los Locos, No. 23, Mayo de 2003)


"Drawing on anthropology, sociology, folklore, and structuralist theory as well as on parapsychology, Hansen subsumes his ideas in the "Trickster" figure of mythology.  Psi is indeed elusive, marginal, labile, ambiguous, and often deceptive -- totally tricky, in fact"

Rosemary Dinnage

Paranormal Review
(No. 23, July 2002, p. 24)


"Hansen has written a major text that should be mandatory reading for any serious parapsychologist.  It would be most suitable for courses in parapsychology, inside or outside a university structure."

Lance Storm

Australian Journal of Parapsychology
(Vol. 3, No. 1, June 2003, pp73-80)


Magonia's cover story for its January 2003 issue was David Perkin's review.  Wes Crum provided the artwork, and I wish to thank him for permission to reproduce it here.