There is a great deal of interest in secret societies and esotericism as evidenced by the number of popular books, fiction and non-fiction, relating to the issue. Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, as well spending a record number of weeks at the top of the New York Times Best Sellers List, has recently been made into a movie starring Tom Hanks. And though they may not be fully cognisant about the history of magic and esotericism, legions of young (and not so young) fans are lapping up the tales of witches and secret societies described in the Harry Potter series. In addition, conspiracy theories abound, linking large corporations and governments to societies such as the Freemasons, the Bilderbergers and the Skull and Bones.
This course will exploit the interest in this area and investigate the truth behind these organisations and consider the allegations of conspiracy levelled against them.