Dr. Peter Lamont is a senior lecturer at the University of Edinburgh where he specializes in the history and psychology of magic and the paranormal. It’s an area of study that explores not only why people believe in the supernatural but how we all understand and relate to the world around us. Here, he explains why a belief in ghosts (both the spirits of loved ones and more malevolent poltergeists) has been a consistent part of human experience, shaped by This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Four Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 50 Close Knit Close Knit: Meet the weavers keeping traditional Egyptian tapestrymaking alive. Arts & Culture Issue 50 The Old Gays Inside a Californian TikTok “content house” of a very different stripe. Arts & Culture Issue 50 New Roots The Palestinian art and agriculture collective sowing seeds of community. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Angela Trimbur An all-out tour de force. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Peace & Quiet In the UK, a centuries-old Quaker meeting house encourages quiet reflection. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Free Wheelers On the road with London’s Velociposse Cycling Club.