Survey data on new religious movements (NRM) in the United States are difficult to find, particularly when the movements in question are reticent to talk with outsiders. UFO abductees are individuals who believe they have been kidnapped by extra-terrestrials. Many abductees believe that extraterrestrials have the ability to erase memories of the abduction. In the 1980s a number of support groups for abductees appeared in the United States with the expressed purpose of helping abductees to recover their memories of alien abductions. The principal investigator was able to survey the membership of one such group, the UFO Contact Center International (now defunct) in 1990.
The survey contained a series of demographic questions, including gender, age, marital status and history, and occupation. At the group’s request, the survey also included several items regarding the abduction experience itself, such as the number of reported abductions, the abductees’ feelings about the experience, dates of abductions, and methods used to recover memories. These data provide a snapshot of the UFO abduction movement as it appeared in 1990.
- Data File
- Cases: 55
Weight Variable: None
- Data Collection
- Date Collected: 1990
- Collection Procedures
- The UFO Contact Center International (now defunct) was a self-described support group for UFO abductees based in Federal Way, Washington, with affiliate centers around the United States. The group agreed to have members complete a voluntary, anonymous, mailed survey. The head of each center was contacted by phone, informed about the survey and asked its number of members. The director of each center was sent the requested number of questionnaires to distribute to their membership along with return postage. Of 217 surveys distributed, 55 were ultimately returned.
- Principal Investigators
- Christopher D. Bader, Ph.D. (Baylor University)
- Related Publications
- Bader, Christopher. (2003). “Supernatural Support Groups: Who are the UFO Abductees and Ritual Abuse Survivors?” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 42(4): 669-678.