Can't You Hear Them?

The Science and Significance of Hearing Voices

The experience of 'hearing voices', once associated with lofty prophetic communications, has fallen low. Today, the experience is typically portrayed as an unambiguous harbinger of madness caused by a broken brain, an unbalanced mind, biology gone wild. Yet an alternative account, forged predominantly by people who hear voices themselves, argues that hearing voices is an understandable response to traumatic life-events. There is an urgent need to overcome the tensions between these two ways of understanding 'voice hearing'.

Simon McCarthy-Jones considers neuroscience, genetics, religion, history, politics and not least the experiences of many voice hearers themselves. This enables him to challenge established and seemingly contradictory understandings and to create a joined-up explanation of voice hearing that is based on evidence rather than ideology.

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Press reviews for: Can't You Hear Them?

Vaughan Bell, University College London, UK

An engaging enquiry into the psychology and neuroscience of voice hearing that explores hallucinated voices in all their fascinating forms.

Chris Cook, Professor of Spirituality, Theology & Health at Durham University, UK

A remarkable book about voice hearing, which provides an accessible account of the science, but does not lose track of the meaning of the experience. It is compassionate, controversial and compelling!

Frank Larøi, University of Bergen, Norway and University of Liège, Belgium

With rigorous science, penetrating analyses, colourful and enjoyable prose, and an astonishing breadth of knowledge - Simon McCarthy-Jones has delivered a book that will undeniably be appreciated by many.

Dr Eleanor Longden, Psychosis Research Unit, Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, UK

On finishing this book my initial instinct was to re-read it in order to appreciate its insights for a second time. Can't You Hear Them? is not only a work of impressive scholarship but a compelling, beautifully-written story of human experience and endeavour.

Renaud Jardri, MD, PhD, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Lille, France

A brilliant and thoughtful travel into the complex experience of hearing voices. Superbly written, with intelligence, but also a delightful sense of humour, this book will become an indispensable addition to the bookshelves of clinicians, scientists and people who hear voices.

PsycCRITIQUES

American Psychological Association

Clinicians should recommend this volume to their patients, scientists should recommend it to their students, and voice hearers should recommend it to others in the voice hearing community. I cannot think of a better accolade than to say few would fail to benefit from reading this volume, irrespective of whether the audience is seeking answers to the experiences one is having or seeking guidance on the underlying mechanisms of voice hearing per se.

Vanessa Beavan

Psychosis

This is a little gem of a book, and a must-have for anyone working with, living with, or curious about voices.

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