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Medical Anthropology Quarterly

Neurophysiology and the Curative Possession Trance: The Chinese Case

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Abstract

Spirit possession healing in prerevolutionary China serves as an example of the more general phenomenon of possession trance. After examining universal features of this form of healing, as revealed in Chinese examples, I review social-psychological and especially neurophysiological explanations for both trance induction and its healing effects. Questions for further investigation are suggested.

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