Tag Archives: religious feelings

Aleister Crowley and the Temptation of Politics

You may be interested in Aleister Crowley and the Temptation of Politics (via Amzn) an apparently still upcoming book by Marco Pasi. According to the publisher’s page for the book, this was scheduled for June 2012, but is also listed there as not yet published. Amazon lists the publication date as December 31, 2011.

The figure of Aleister Crowley (1875–1947) is one of the most important authors in the history of modern western esotericism. A prolific and eclectic author, he wrote novels, poetry, essays, and, above all, developed in his many writings his personal magico-religious doctrine. During his life he had the opportunity to meet, and at times to influence, a considerable number of figures in the most various milieus. This volume contains a study of Crowley’s relationship with the politics of his times, a crucial issue in order to understand the importance and the influence of his work.

Crowley, educated in the late Victorian age, shows many of the contradictions of this period. The search for an alternative way to express his religious feelings lead him to elaborate his own vision of political and social radical change. He announced a new era echoing the ideal of a “new man” proposed by the totalitarian regimes and the radical politics of his times, and at the same time anticipated some ideas made fashionable today by the “New Age” spirituality. The book follows the steps of Crowley’s intellectual development on the basis of the enormous corpus of published writings, but also through the analysis of numerous unpublished documents.

According to the publisher the contents include a biographical sketch; Magical Politics, including Between mysticism and religion, The Liber Legis, Political radicalism and totalitarian regimes & Magic; Dangerous liaisons, including J.F.C. Fuller, Tom Driberg, Walter Duranty, Gerald Hamilton & Maxwell Knight; The Mouth of Hell & Fernando Pessoa’s political mysticism; Counter-initiation and conspiracy.

The publisher also offers a short bio of the the author you may be curious to read:

“Marco Pasi is Assistant Professor of History of Hermetic Philosophy at the University of Amsterdam. He earned his PhD in 2004 at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Sorbonne with a thesis on the idea of magic in English occultism. He is the book review editor of Aries: Journal for the Study of Western Esotericism and a member of the editorial board of Politica Hermetica.”

Certainly seems like an interesting lens through which to examine the life and work of Aleister Crowley, but the typically exorbitant fee for a scholarly work is daunting at $85 US. Anyone want to buy a copy for the Hermetic Library to review?