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Title: A psychologically-based taxonomy of misdirection
Authors: Caffaratti, Kuhn G
Teszka, R.
Rensink, R. A.
First Published: 9-Dec-2014
Publisher: Frontiers
Citation: Frontiers in Psychology, 2014, 5 : 1392
Abstract: Magicians use misdirection to prevent you from realizing the methods used to create a magical effect, thereby allowing you to experience an apparently impossible event. Magicians have acquired much knowledge about misdirection, and have suggested several taxonomies of misdirection. These describe many of the fundamental principles in misdirection, focusing on how misdirection is achieved by magicians. In this article we review the strengths and weaknesses of past taxonomies, and argue that a more natural way of making sense of misdirection is to focus on the perceptual and cognitive mechanisms involved. Our psychologically-based taxonomy has three basic categories, corresponding to the types of psychological mechanisms affected: perception, memory, and reasoning. Each of these categories is then divided into subcategories based on the mechanisms that control these effects. This new taxonomy can help organize magicians' knowledge of misdirection in a meaningful way, and facilitate the dialog between magicians and scientists.
DOI Link: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01392
ISSN: 1664-1078
Version: Publisher Version
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © the authors, 2014. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( ), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology

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