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193 Posts

Profile of Laban
I'm looking for all sorts of books/documents that deals with the psychological concepts and principles used in magic. for example, gary kurtzs - "leading with your head" which deals with the psychological aspect of performance.

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Inner circle
The Jersey Shore
2702 Posts

Profile of sethb
I strongly recommend "Strong Magic" by Darwin Ortiz, click HERE for more info.

A Table of Contents and some brief comments are HERE. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
Alex Linian
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Inner circle
1277 Posts

Profile of Alex Linian
"Abracadabra!: Secret Methods Magicians & Others Use to Deceive Their Audience" by Nathaniel Schiffman is an awesome book about WHY magic works... Also check out "Win the Crowd" by Steve Cohen
Chris H
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Inner circle
Melbourne, Australia
1364 Posts

Profile of Chris H
'Absolute Magic' by Derren Brown. What I consider to be the most important book I've ever read on magic. Rumour has it that stocks are running low and these will not be reprinted. This may be untrue, but you should check that out anyway.

All the best,

-- Topher
John Nesbit
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Inner circle
United States
1421 Posts

Profile of John Nesbit
Tarbell Course in Magic. All volumes. He wasn't called the Dr. for nothing. Smile
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94 Posts

Profile of Trestkon
On 2006-09-14 14:06, sethb wrote:
I strongly recommend "Strong Magic" by Darwin Ortiz, click HERE for more info.

A Table of Contents and some brief comments are HERE. SETH

I'll second that. I just bought it and I'm about 50 pages in, the depth of the information is fantastic, and it's written in a way that engages the reader. Favorite quote so far:

(While discussing avoiding interupting your tricks with frivolous things that distract the spectator)

"It's like having the phone ring just as you're having an orgasm. Even if it's good news, it's just not good timing."
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Veteran user
381 Posts

Profile of Gotama
You might also want to try the following: Magic in Theory: An Introduction to the Theoretical and Psychological Elements of Conjuring by Peter Lamont and Richard Wiseman.
I asked the boy beneath the pines.
He said, "The master's gone alone herb picking,
somewhere on the mount,
cloud hidden,
whereabouts unknown."
(Chin Tao, 777-841, trans. by Alan Watts)
Phil C
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Special user
Ontario, Canada
903 Posts

Profile of Phil C
Presentation-ise, Maximum Entertainment be Ken Weber.
Or more in mentalism, Psychological Subtleties by Banachek.
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Regular user
123 Posts

Profile of Fingers_Fidge
I have read the following and found this useful:

Conjuror's Psychological Secrets - S.H. Sharpe - The second volume of S.H. Sharpe's massive work. This book presents the classifications, principles and examples of important psychological techniques every magician should know about. Never before has there been a reference manual as complete as this. It is a veritable encyclopedic work. The author has done a superb job in analyzing and classifying the Principles used in the Psychology of Conjuring. He identifies four Fundamental Principles (Objective Illusions, Subjective Illusions, Influence by Suggestions and Intellectual) and 15 Specific Principles. The book is divided into four chapters. Chapter One deals with the Objective Illusions of Taste, Touch and Smell as well as Visual and Auditory Illusions. Chapter Two covers the Subjective Illusions of Time, Interest, Age Disorientation, Illusion of State, Assertion, Subconscious Impressions, Associations, Comparisons, Inference, Mental Supplementing, Pre-conditioning and Confusion Illusions. Chapter Three offers Influence by Suggestion, Creating Atmosphere, Imaginary Impressions, Emotional Secrets, Showmanship, Stagecraft, Influencing Choice and Misdirection. Chapter Four covers the intellectual side of conjuring psychology, specifically Character Assessing, Detection by observation and Deduction, Artificial Memory Techniques, Verbal Substitution, Codes, Cue sand Clues.

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Alberta, Canada
158 Posts

Profile of landon
Strong magic is indeed very good. Also check out the Fitzkee trilogy (three books). Tommy Wonder's essays in his books of Wonder are also top notch and some of my favorite reading material. Finally, although it may not be exactly what you are looking for, I highly, highly recommend Dan Sylvester's Creativity lecture notes. They are only about 6 or 7 pages and although there are several grammer and spelling errors, they are very inspiring, or at least have been for me. I read the booklet about 3 times a week and never get sick of it! I believe you can get them at his site for 10 bucks or so.

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