Gregory, Anita (Kohsen) (1925–1984)
British parapsychologist with a background in psychology;
her late husband, C. C. L. Gregory, was also a parapsychologist.
Anita Gregory was principal lecturer in education at the Polytechnic
of North London, where she taught psychology and
philosophy. Gregory was born Anita Kohsen on June 9, 1925,
in Berlin, Germany. Because her parents were Jewish, it was
soon necessary for her to leave Germany. For a time she was entrusted
to a Belgian convent before eventually moving to England,
where she studied at Birkbeck College, University of
London, taking an honors degree in languages before studying
politics, economics, philosophy, psychology, and physiology at
St. Hugh’s College, Oxford University. In 1949 she became interested
in psychical research through Dr. William Brown, a
reader in mental philosophy at Oxford, who discussed with her
the phenomena of the Austrian medium Rudi Schneider.
In 1954 Kohsen married Clive Gregory, emeritus director
of the University of London Observatory, and the two formed
the Institute for the Study of Mental Images at their home in
Hampshire and published various joint papers on psychology
and cosmology. Between 1961 and 1964 they issued their own
journal, Cosmos, which included contributions on Clive Gregory’s
concept of the ‘‘O-Structure,’’ a theory of psychophysical
cosmology.
In 1962 Anita Gregory translated a study of ESP by the Russian
parapsychologist L. L. Vasiliev, which was published the
following year by the Institute for the Study of Mental Images
under the title Experiments in Distant Influence. An expanded
edition was published in 1976. Gregory also edited a collection
of the writings of Sir Cyril Burt on psychical research, published
as ESP and Psychology. Her own study of the Rudi Schneider
case occupied a full issue of the journal Annals of Science in
1977 and was later published as a separate book. She also contributed
various articles to Psychic News, using the pseudonyms
‘‘Zebedee’’ and ‘‘John Barnes.’’
She was an active member of the Society for Psychical Research,
serving on the council and becoming honorary secretary
for a period. While with the society, Gregory conducted a
series of experiments with British psychic Matthew Manning,
resulting in an 85-page report in 1982. This included some
valuable observations on the role of the experimenter by Manning
himself. In 1981 Gregory participated in the Parapsychology
Foundation’s Thirtieth Annual International Conference
in New York, presenting a paper on ‘‘Investigating MacroPhysical
Phenomena.’’
In August 1983 she was awarded a doctorate by the Council
for National Academic Awards. She taught a course on psychical
research at the School of Education in the North London
Polytechnic. She suffered from illness for a long period after
the death of her husband in 1964 and died November 7, 1984.
Sources
Berger, Arthur S., and Joyce Berger. The Encyclopedia of
Parapsychology and Psychical Research. New York Paragon
House, 1991.
Gregory, Anita. ‘‘London Experiments with Matthew Manning.’’
Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research 56
(1982).
———. ‘‘Psychical Research as a Social Activity.’’ Journal of
the Society for Psychical Research 51 (1981).
———. The Strange Case of Rudi Schneider. Metuchen, N.J.
Scarecrow Press, 1985.
Pleasants, Helene, ed. Biographical Dictionary of Parapsychology.
New York Helix Press, 1964.