I'm having a hard time about a negatively charged rod and the objects it will attract. It's true that the rod will only attract positively charged objects, correct? here's what I have to answer in my exam. To explain the attraction which a rubbed rod of amber exerted on small objects which were some distance away from it, Isaac Newton suggested that there was an invisble substance in the amber which he called an "electrical spirit." When the rod was rubbed, this electrical spirit was disturbed and stretched out into the area around the rod. When the electrical spirit contracted again, it pulled with it any small objects that happened to be in its path. PROBLEM: WHAT EXPLANATION IS USED TODAY TO EXPLAIN HOW ELECTRICAL FORCES ARE ABLE TO ACT UPON OBJECTS AT A DISTANCE? I understand electrostatics... but the question is kinda hard for me to explain. hehe =) What I would like to confirm is... The small objects in Isaac Newton's experiment that were attracted to the rod were postively charged?? -- and not neutral?