What it is like to hear voices that no-one else can hear?

Usually associated with severe mental illness such as schizophrenia and psychosis, voice-hearing is now being recognised as an important aspect of many ordinary people’s lives.

We seek to provide a better understanding of this experience by examining it from different academic perspectives and working with voice-hearers, clinicians and mental health professionals.

About Us


Hearing the Voice is a large interdisciplinary study of voice-hearing, based at Durham University and funded by the Wellcome Trust.

Our international research team includes academics from cognitive neuroscience, English Literature, cultural studies, medical humanities, philosophy, linguistics, psychology, psychiatry and theology. We also work closely with clinicians, voice-hearers and other experts by experience.

In addition to exploring the subjective experience of hearing voices, we are investigating the cognitive and neural mechanisms that underlie this experience. We are also exploring the links between voice-hearing and creativity, and exploring the ways in which voice-hearing has been interpreted and represented in different cultures, religions and historical periods. Many of our researchers are developing innovative ways of improving therapeutic practice in cases where people find their voices distressing and clinical help is sought.

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Highlights from the Blog


Feelings of Presence: New Article and Survey

Have you ever had the experience of feeling like you are in the presence of somebody, even when no-one was there? Or had the feeling that someone was close by, who you couldn’t see, hear or touch?

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