Poortman, J(ohannes) J(acobus)
(1896– )
Professor of metaphysics who wrote on parapsychology.
Poortman was born on April 26, 1896, in Rotterdam, Netherlands
and educated at the universities of Gröningen, Hamburg,
Paris (Sorbonne), Geneva, and Vienna. He was a research fellow
in philosophy at Harvard University (1935–36) and received
his Ph.D. from the University of Amsterdam in 1954.
Poortman was coeditor of Tijdschrift voor Parapsychologie
(1937–38), the year before he began as head of the Library of
Encyclopedia of Occultism & Parapsychology • 5th Ed. Poortman, J(ohannes) J(acobus)
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the Theosophical Society (Netherlands Section), Amsterdam
(1938–59). Simultaneously he was secretary of the Division of
Philosophy for the Winkler Prins Encyclopedia (1944–51), a lecturer
in metaphysics at Leyden University (1945–53), and beginning
in 1954, secretary of Netherlands Theosophical Research
Center. In 1958, he became a special professor for
‘‘metaphysics in the spirit of theosophy’’ at Leyden University.
Poortman was a charter member of the Studievereniging
voor Psychical Research (Dutch Society for Psychical Research)
and for four years its treasurer (1934–38). He was a charter
member of the Parapsychological Association and a member
of Korrespondierendes Mitglied Österreichische Gesellschaft
für Psychische Forschung. He took a special interest in the relationships
between philosophy and parapsychology.
Sources
Poortman, J. J. De Grondparadox. N.p., 1961.
———. Drei Vorträge Über Philosophie und Parapsychologie.
N.p., 1939.
———. ‘‘The Feeling of Being Stared At.’’ Journal of the Society
for Psychical Research (1959).
———. ‘‘Henri Bergson and Parapsychology.’’ Tijdschrift
voor Parapsychologie N.p., 1941.
———. ‘‘Mysterious Words.’’ Tijdschrift voor Parapsychologie.
N.p., 1939, 1940.
———. Occult Motives in Literature. N.p., 1937.
———. ‘‘Psychophysical Parallelism or Interactionism’’
Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (1937).
———. Variaties op een en meer Themata (Collected Essays on
Philosophy, Parapsychology and Theosophy). N.p., 1947.