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2017 Vol. 81(1) 33-45

Etzel Cardeña, Ph.D.
Parapsychology Press


Silva, B. A., and Poeschl, G. (2017). Bem’s “Feeling the Future” (2011) Five Years Later: Its Impact on Scientific Literature. Journal of Parapsychology, 81, 33-45.


Bem’s “Feeling the Future” (2011) Five Years Later: Its Impact on Scientific Literature.

Bruno A. Silva               Gabrielle Poeschl

Center for Psychology at University of Porto

The study analyses the impact on scientific literature of the controversial 2011 article by Bem, “Feeling the Future.” Texts that cite Bem´s article (N = 162) were identified from the Elsevier Scopus database for the years 2011 to 2015. Their summaries were analyzed using the Iramuteq program for textual data. The analysis suggested that the impact can be grouped into four classes: (a) The Replication class is characterized by a vocabulary addressing the role of replication in psychology research; (b) the Bayesian class reflects the perceived merits of this approach when compared with more traditional inferential statistics, namely statistics relying on p values; (c) the Experimental Studies of Anomalous Experiences (AE) class includes terms related to classical empirical research, applied in AE studies, and concepts, methodologies and theories specific to parapsychological research; (d) the Quantum Phenomena and Theories class suggests that quantum theories of brain/consciousness function may leave the door open to the possibility of the existence of psi phenomena. The Replication and Bayesian classes are represented more in psychology literature, confirming our hypothesis that psychology sources have a more critical position. Data moreover suggest that replication is currently the most referred path in the attempt to reach closure on this controversy.


scientific controversy, precognition, retrocausation, Daryl Bem, parapsychology

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