The reason so many people find dolls to be scary is due to a psychological principle that Freud called “the uncanny.” The feeling of the uncanny is the sense of fear, horror, and revulsion that people feel toward things that look very near to being alive, but aren’t. This includes things like mannequins, statues, dolls, and even corpses. You have probably heard the term, “the uncanny valley” in relation to computer animations of human figures, as the revulsive feeling of the uncanny actually increases the closer a humanlike figure gets to looking real without actually being real.
Dolls have long been associated with evil spirits, as they are human figures who are very much not human. But are there really as many haunted dolls as people say? In this video, a pair of psychic mediums react to a collection of supposedly haunted dolls.
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Though the man displaying the dolls at Zak Bagans' The Haunted Museum says the girl doll must remain locked in her (presumably evil spirit-proof) glass case lest she cause mischief, the psychic claims the doll is telling her that she has been unjustly accused. The medium claims that the doll claims (and this is really a lot of levels of hearsay) that it is really that sketchy-looking male doll/ventriloquist dummy beside her who is the one causing trouble.
At which point, the psychic reports, the male doll threatens to bite off her nose if she tells anyone. Which, oops.
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Are the dolls haunted? Is the psychic talking to them? Is any of this for real? Only one thing is certain: the bizarre sensation of the uncanny.