View Chapters

Book: Building Blocks of Religion

Chapter: Invisible Hands and Sacred Unicorns: Occulture as a Schema for Supernatural Ascriptions in the Millennial Generation

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.37589


This chapter presents an empirical and methodological example of an interdisciplinary study on religious cognition, in which the approach is aligned with the building blocks approach suggested by Ann Taves and Egil Asprem. While autism is the focal point of the research project, the study also highlights a generational shift in the ascription of non-ordinary powers as these millennials appear to embrace occult phenomena in Western popular culture (‘occulture’). Besides illustrating how emic ascriptions of things set apart from the ordinary may vary between different generations, the chapter also provides a multilevel model of how unusual embodied experiences – which appear to be especially prevalent on the autism spectrum – are understood in terms of occult schemas derived from popular culture.

Chapter Contributors

  • Ingela Visuri ([email protected] - ingela_visuri) 'Gävle University and Södertörn University '