Aleister Crowley

Aleister Crowley : The Beast Demystified

3.2 (99 ratings by Goodreads)
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Aleister Crowley (1875-1947) - mystic, writer, poet, astrologer, sexual revolutionary, painter, mountain climber and social critic - has a terrifying reputation. The contemporary press labelled him the 'wickedest man in the world', while he called himself the 'great beast'. Crowley dabbled in the occult, supported Germany in the First World War, was addicted to opiates, and many who associated with him died tragically in mysterious circumstances.

Working from the starting point that behind the demonic reputation there stood a human being, and that beyond the self-proclaimed black magician there was a man hungry for publicity and fame, Roger Hutchinson lifts the smokescreen of mythology to reveal a truly astonishing figure.

Why did this curious product of the Plymouth Brethren found the first 'hippy commune' in Sicily? What led this Cambridge graduate to be celebrated 20 years after his death on the cover of The Beatles' Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album? Why did Mussolini expel him from Italy? Why did a British magazine label him 'the man we'd like to hang'?

Roger Hutchinson reveals the real Crowley: warts, wickedness, talent, courage, cowardice and all.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 128 x 198 x 15mm | 160g
  • Mainstream Publishing
  • Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0
  • 1845961323
  • 9781845961329
  • 757,986

Review Text


A level-headed reappraisal of a man whose fantasies were fuelled as much by self-publicity as by any real demonic contact

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Review quote

"An astonishing book . . . Crowley was one of the most infamous figures of the first half of the twentieth century" * Daily Mail * "Hutchinson means what he says about demystifying his subject - by the biography's end there's not a stone left unturned" * The Scotsman * "A level-headed reappraisal of a man whose fantasies were fuelled as much by self-publicity as by any real demonic contact" * Scotland on Sunday * "Well informed and cool-headed . . . one can see that Crowley's own words would be of little use in conveying the facts of his life, which Hutchinson does admirably" * New York Times *
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About Roger Hutchinson

Roger Hutchinson is an award-winning author and journalist. He lives on the Isle of Raasay.
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Rating details

99 ratings
3.2 out of 5 stars
5 13% (13)
4 19% (19)
3 45% (45)
2 19% (19)
1 3% (3)

Our customer reviews

I only got up to page 42 and already I was performing mathematical equations and literary structure, this book has helped my intellect and knowledge of the beginnings of the universe. Plus it is funny in places too, if you are looking for a good 'Highbrow' read this book is for you, but have a good dictionary to hand as it contains words I have never heard of before. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, great value for money price too. Zoot more
by paul o\' brien
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