Magic in Theory

Magic in Theory

An introduction to the theoretical and psychological elements of conjuring

Peter Lamont and Richard Wiseman


"Magic in Theory is charmingly clear, admirably erudite and highly readable. The chapters are gently authoritative without being numbingly complex ... Highly recommended"

Ian Rowland, Fortean Times


"Very useful as a way into the minds of magicians"

Journal of Parapsychology


Magic, properly performed, is a complex and skilful art and is capable of deceiving almost everyone, but magicians are understandably reluctant to reveal their methods: magic is also a secretive business. However, there is more to magic than the specific secrets behind specific tricks. Psychology is central to the art of deception and an important part of being an effective magician. Psychologists have studied magic for over a century, whilst parapsychologists have also understood that conjuring techniques have been used to fabricate paranormal phenomena.

This book presents the theoretical and psychological elements of magic in an accessible way. It will provide magicians with a better understanding of the part psychology can play in developing their skills. Drawing on exclusive interviews with many top magicians, Magic in Theory gives insights into how performers put these ideas into practice.


Dr Peter Lamont is a Research Fellow at the Koestler Parapsychology Unit, University of Edinburgh. He has performed as a magician and psychic and is a former President of the Edinburgh Magic Circle. He is the author of the critically acclaimed The Rise of the Indian Rope Trick.

Professor Richard Wiseman is the bestselling author of The Luck Factor and heads a psychology research unit at the University of Hertfordshire. He too is a former professional magician and member of the Magic Circle. To find out more about his current research interests, visit Professor Wiseman's website.


ISBN-13 978-1-902806-50-1

July 2005, 192pp

Paperback £8.99 / US$15.95


Other books co-authored by Richard Wiseman: