Sunday 23 July 2017

'Hearing voices' good for writers

Hearing voices is often a sign of past trauma, especially during childhood, but new research has revealed that it may not always be a bad thing for artists – especially fiction writers. Stock photo: Depositphotos
Hearing voices is often a sign of past trauma, especially during childhood, but new research has revealed that it may not always be a bad thing for artists – especially fiction writers. Stock photo: Depositphotos

Chai Brady

Hearing voices is often a sign of past trauma, especially during childhood, but new research has revealed that it may not always be a bad thing for artists - especially fiction writers.

A Trinity College associate professor has released a book that uses scientific studies and personal stories to offer a balanced view of the phenomenon.

In 'Can't You Hear Them? The Science and Significance of Hearing Voices', Simon McCarthy explores new balanced ways to look at the phenomenon. He found that some fiction writers who experience the often stigmatised 'voice-hearing' may view their characters as "independent beings, whose presence is felt and whose voices are heard". Their voices may even give plot points and storylines.

Irish Independent

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