Aleister Crowley

(3053 words)

Occultist, poet, playwright, social critic, chess-player, habitual drug user, ceremonial magician and one of the leading mountaineers of his generation, Aleister Crowley ranks among the most controversial figures of 20th century English literary history. Known for his philosophy of personal freedom, but perhaps more for the reputation he acquired at the hands of the British tabloid press during the 1920s and 30s, Crowley was a prolific writer, diarist and epistolarian whose literary output ranged in subject matter from mysticism and magic to politics, social criticism, culture and philosophy. He remains an influential figure in Western esoterica and, thanks largely to his appropriation by a new generation of adherents in the 1…

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Horrox, James. "Aleister Crowley". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 July 2011
[, accessed 26 November 2015.]