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 47 Alice Sheppard On dance as a channel to commune with the body—even when it hurts. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Dr. Woo Meet the tattoo artist who's inked LA. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Walt Odets The author and clinical psychologist on why self-acceptance is the key to a gay man's well-being. Arts & Culture Fashion Issue 47 A Picture of Health Xiaopeng Yuan photographs the world’s weirdest wellness cures. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Chani Nicholas and Sonya Passi Inside the astrology company on a mission to prove workplace well-being is more than a corporate tagline. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Julia Bainbridge On the life-enhancing potential of not drinking alcohol.