School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences


Dr Peter Lamont

Photograph of Dr Peter Lamont
Senior Lecturer
0131 650 3372
F34 (7GS)
Research Interests
Historical and conceptual issues in psychology, especially history of unorthodox psychology. History and psychology of magic and the paranormal. Discursive psychology of beliefs about the paranormal.

Representative Publications

  1. Lamont, P. (2013) Extraordinary beliefs: a historical approach to a psychological problem (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)
  2. Lamont, P. (2010). Reflexivity, the role of history and the case of mesmerism in early Victorian Britain. History of Psychology,13(4), 393-408.
  3. Lamont, P., Henderson, J. M., & Smith, T. (2010). Where science and magic meet: the illusion of a ‘science of magic’. Review of General Psychology, 14(1), 16-21.
  4. Lamont, P. & Bates, C. (2007). Conjuring images of India in nineteenth century Britain. Social History, 32(3), 309-325.
  5. Lamont, P. (2007). Paranormal belief and the avowal of prior scepticism. Theory and Psychology, 17(5), 681-696.
  6. Spiritualism and a mid-Victorian crisis of evidence. Historical Journal, 47(4), 897-920.

PPLS Undergraduate Director



I am Secretary of the British Psychological Society (History and Philosophy Section). I am a member of the Society for Psychical Research, a Fellow of the Institute for Cultural Research, an Associate of the Inner Magic Circle, and a former President (and Honorary Member) of the Edinburgh Magic Circle. I am a reviewer for several academic journals, including History of Psychology, Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences and History of the Human Sciences. I also write a column for Genii: the conjurors’ magazine, and am co-founder of the Edinburgh Secret Society.



  • Historical and conceptual issues in psychology (second year)
  • Qualitative methods in psychology (third year)
  • History of unorthodox psychology (fourth year)


  • Programme Director of the MSc in History and Theory of Psychology
  • Psychological research skills (MSc)
  • PhD supervisor