Occult Paris – Tobias Churton

An engaging history of Parisian esoteric and artistic movements in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.


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Rochester: Inner Traditions, 2016. Hardback with Dustjacket, xvii+493 pages. New.

Occult Paris is an engaging romp through the period known as the Belle Époque (1871-1914), a time in which many influential cultural movements and artistic innovations flourished in Paris. Movements such as Art Nouveau, Impressionism and the Decadents have all profoundly left their mark on contemporary culture. But what of occult activity? In this fascinating book, author Tobias Churton shows how a wide range of esoteric movements – Theosophy, Rosicrucians, Martinists and Freemasons made fin-de-siècle Paris their home. He reveals the influence these occult movements had on famous figures such as Arthur Rimbaud and Charles Baudelaire, Claude Debussy and Georges Seurat.

Illustrated with 33 colour plates and many monochrome illustrations from the period, Occult Paris is an enthralling historical exploration of the labyrinthine world of Paris during the Belle Époque; its many colourful figures, and the intersections between esoteric thought, art, intellectual thought and politics. A must for all lovers of occult history!

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