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Tanya Marie Luhrmann

Albert Ray Lang Professor
Field of Interest(s)
Culture and Mind
Madness
Phenomenology
Spiritual Experience
Belief
Magic
Tanya Marie Luhrmann is the Albert Ray Lang Professor of Anthropology at Stanford University, with a courtesy appointment in Psychology. Her work focuses on the edge of experience: on voices, visions, the world of the supernatural and the world of psychosis. She has done ethnography on the streets of Chicago with homeless and psychotic women, and worked with people who hear voices in Chennai, Accra and the South Bay. She has also done fieldwork with evangelical Christians who seek to hear God speak back, with Zoroastrians who set out to create a more mystical faith, and with people who practice magic. She uses a combination of ethnographic and experimental methods to understand the phenomenology of unusual sensory experiences, the way they are shaped by ideas about minds and persons, and what we can learn from this social shaping that can help us to help those whose voices are distressing. At the heart of the work is the sense of being called, and its possibilities and burden.

She was named to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003, received a John Guggenheim Fellowship award in 2007 and elected to the American Philosophical Society in 2022. When God Talks Back was named a NYT Notable Book of the Year and a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year. It was awarded the $100,000 Grawemeyer Prize for Religion by the University of Louisville. She has published over thirty OpEds in The New York Times, and her work has been featured in The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, The Times Literary Supplement, Science News, and many other publications. She is the author of Persuasions of the Witch’s Craft, The Good Parsi, Of Two Minds, When God Talks Back, Our Most Troubling Madness, and How God Becomes Real, and is currently at work on a book entitled Voices.
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Tanya Luhrmann

Contact

Telephone
(659) 723-3421