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  The Spiritualist Prime Minister: Volume 1: Mackenzie King and the New Revelation
Anton Wagner, PhD

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The Spiritualist Prime Minister by historian Dr. Anton Wagner presents former Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King’s quest for spirit communication within the historical and cultural context of British, Canadian, and American Spiritualism.

Mackenzie King was Canada’s longest-serving Prime Minister from 1922 to 1930 and from 1935 to 1948. Historians have ranked him as Canada’s greatest Prime Minister for his political leadership in winning Canada’s autonomy from the British Empire and for organizing Canada’s enormous war effort that enabled Winston Churchill and President Roosevelt to lead their countries to victory in World War II.

The Spiritualist Prime Minister is the first in-depth examination of King’s spiritualist beliefs and occult practices. Volume 1: Mackenzie King and the New Revelation takes its title from Arthur Conan Doyle’s affirmation during World War I that Spiritualism was a new revelation from God that would become the dominant world religion within a generation. The volume contrasts the rapid growth of Spiritualism in the United Kingdom with King’s turn towards Spiritualism following the death of his mother in 1917 and demonstrates the very significant influence of British Spiritualism on a Canadian Prime Minister.

Praise for The Spiritualist Prime Minister

This masterly overview of the Canadian politician’s spiritual quest and his dialogues with major political figures – living and dead – about world events provides new insights that raise intriguing questions.
~Roy Stemman, Author, journalist, and former editor of Psychic News

A monumental achievement in historical political biography.
~Professor Heidi Rimke, Ph.D., Sociology Department, University of Winnipeg

The Spiritualist Prime Minister sets a bar that few future biographers will be able to match when dealing with the esoteric exploits of a public figure.
~Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., Co-author, Personal Mythology: The Psychology of Your Evolving Self

Anton Wagner extends the scholarship of psychic experience – a topic which has been purposefully written out of many modern histories. The Spiritualist Prime Minister adds to contemporary reassessments attesting to the significance of Spiritualism and its monumental impact on culture.
~Shannon Taggart, Author, Séance

About the author

Anton Wagner holds doctorates in drama and on Mackenzie King and Canadian artists from the University of Toronto and York University. He was one of the founding executive members of the Canadian Association for Theatre Research.

Anton has edited ten books on Canadian theatre and drama including Contemporary Canadian Theatre: New World Visions, A Vision of Canada: Herman Voaden’s Dramatic Works 1928-1945, and Establishing Our Boundaries: English-Canadian Theatre Criticism, published by the University of Toronto Press. As a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Canada Research Fellow, he was the Director of Research and Managing Editor of The World Encyclopedia of Contemporary Theatre, published by Routledge.

Anton is a contributor to Canadian Performance Documents and Debates: A Sourcebook, published by the University of Alberta Press in 2022. His documentaries broadcast on television include The Photographer: An Artist’s Journey, At the Crossroads: Faith in Cuba, and Our Hiroshima.

Publisher: White Crow Books
Published July 23, 2024
388 pages
Size: 6 x 9 inches / 229 x 152 mm
ISBN 9781786772640
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