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Title: The followership effect : charismatic oratory, hypnoidal and altered states of consciousness
Author: Churches, Richard M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5918 9338
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2016
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Charismatic leadership and hypnosis are frequently associated in the literature. This thesis contributes to charismatic theory by illustrating there may be more to this association than mere speculation. The research used Phenomenology of Consciousness Inventory (PCI), and adapted PCI-Hypnotic Assessment Protocol items, to explore the within-subject effects of world-class oratory compared to a baseline condition (eyes open sitting quietly) and pseudo attention placebo (archive film from the same date and context). Drawing on the PCI’s ability to generate predicted Harvard Group Scores (pHGSs) (a general measure of trance depth (or ‘hypnoidal state’)), charismatic oratory deepens trance but not to the same degree as found in prior Harvard induction research. Despite this, 8.26% of people attain trance depths commensurate with a high hypnoidal state (pHGS > 7.0). There are also similar relationships between self-reported depth, imagoic suggestibility and hypnoidal state to those found in prior hypnosis studies. Oratory, in addition, generates an altered state of consciousness. However, while it yields a similar PCI major dimension intensity profile to hypnotic induction, it appears to produce different pattern effects (notably the association of amplified levels of negative and positive affect and bonding relationships to altered state, altered experience and visual imagery). Additional analyses, applying methods previously used to define hypnotic type, identify five follower types with (for those obtaining high and low depth of trance during the speech) characteristics similar to high and low hypnotic susceptibility individuals during hypnosis. Paralleling recent theorising about the nature of hypnosis, charismatic effects could also be seen as a sub-domain of the wider domain of suggestion, but one placing greater emotional demands on consciousness. In the right circumstances, world-class oratory (or similar charismatic media) could fulfil a comparable function to the suggestibility test during stage hypnosis (i.e. as a selection mechanism for identifying those most susceptible to influence).
Supervisor: Tabvuma, Vurain Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available