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Crabtree, Adam.

Toronto, Collins, c1985. 278pp, cloth, $22.95, ISBN 0-00-217225-9. CIP

Grades 12 and up
Reviewed by Ruth Rausa

Volume 13 Number 5
1985 September

Dr. Adam Crabtree, author of Multiple Man, is one of a new breed of scientists probing areas that most would not even consider because of their relation to the paranormal, the immeasurable, the absurd. Yet the author has posed many questions and presented extensive data pointing to the existence of possession and multiple personality. Besides working for the CBC on programs dealing with science and the paranormal, including a recent radio series entitled "Mysteries of the Mind," Crabtree has been a practicing therapist for the past fifteen years. He is also one of the world's leading authorities on mesmerism.

Rather than try to prove or disprove the existence of multiple personality and possession, Crabtree accepts the clinical evidence presented in his own practice and in the recorded reports of others. He assumes that we have not reached the stage "which makes possible a final pronouncement on the reality or unreality of possession and multiple personality." What he tries to prove is that these phenomena, rather than being a negative, harmful condition, can be viewed as indicative of the yet uncharted potential and versatility of the human personality.

The work is divided into four parts, each part separated into chapters. Part one deals with multiple personality within humans and includes a history of the study of man's inner multiplicity. A good history of mesmerism is included in this chapter which explains how the discovery of the divided consciousness occured. The second part deals with the subject of possession; what it looks like, victims of possession, and the cures. Part three describes some of Crabtree's own experiences in working with cases of both possession and multiple personality, while in part four, he explores the various attempts that have been made to explain these two phenomena and offers his own views on the nature of inner multiplicity. The work contains an index and an extensive bibliography, which not only provides complete information about the sources directly quoted in the text but lists a selection of works that can serve as a starting point for further study.

The author presents his material so effectively that if you are a sceptic before reading this work, chances are you will be questioning what you believe by the end. Multiple Man is most thought-provoking. Recommended.

Ruth Rausa, Toronto, Ont.
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