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James Branch Cabell's JURGEN, Crowley's favorite novel

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The Hermetic Hour

The Hermetic Hour

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On Thursday September first, 2016 the Hermetic Hour with host Poke
Runyon will discuss James Branch Cabell's romantic fantasy novel JURGEN
(1919).This delightfully satirical and deeply esoteric work is
considered Cabell's masterpiece and a classic of American literature. It
might best be quickly described as an Oz book for adults. Modern readers
will liken Cabell's tale to a Monty Python script. Chapter XXII was
inspired by Aleister Crowley's Gnostic Mass which prompted Crowley to
praise Cabell as America's greatest novelist. We will read the infamous
22nd chapter along with some of the symbolically described erotic
passages that got the original book banned in New York. This backfired
and made JURGEN a national bestseller in the 1920s. And it is still a
great read -- so if you want to spend an hour with Messers Cabell and
Crowley, tune in and we will follow Jurgen chasing his first love all
the way from puberty to Hell, which is a liberal democracy and up to
Heaven which is a Southern Baptist dictatorship, administered by a black
house slave. Maybe we can get it banned again!

 

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