Dr LEO RUICKBIE has been investigating, writing about and sometimes experiencing the darker side of life - from haunted houses to Black Masses - for most of his professional career. What began as a philosophical discussion on re-enchantment (MA with distinction, Lancaster University) led to his being awarded a PhD from King's College, London, for his research into contemporary witchcraft and magic. In recognition of his studies he is also an Associate of King's College and the winner of the 1st Tinniswood Prize.
He is the author of Witchcraft Out of the Shadows (2004, 2011), Faustus: The Life and Times of a Renaissance Magician (2009), and A Brief Guide to the Supernatural (2012). He is also a contributor to Fortean Times and Paranormal magazine among others, as well as academic journals with such articles as 'Child Witches: From Imaginary Cannibalism to Ritual Abuse' published in Paranthropology, 3.3 (July 2012). Recent contributions to academic volumes include a chapter on the role of spirit communication in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn for The Spiritualist Movement: Speaking with the Dead in America and Around the World, ed. Christopher M. Moreman (Praeger, forthcoming), eighteenth century medical knowledge in relation to reports of vampirism for The Universal Vampire: Origins and Evolution of a Legend, ed. Barbara Brodman and Jim Doan (Rowman and Littlefield, forthcoming), the German Humanist Trithemius's innovation in cryptology that sealed his reputation as a black magician for Alchemy, Medicine, Science and the Occult in European Thought, ed. By Angela Catalina Ghionea (Cambridge Scholars Press, forthcoming) and the religious reactions to JK Rowling's Harry Potter series for The Sociology of Harry Potter, ed. Jenn Sims (Zossima, 2012).
His work has been mentioned in the media from the Guardian to Radio Jamaica, and his expertise has been sought by numerous film and media companies, as well as by the International Society for Human Rights. He is a member of Societas Magica, the European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism, the Society for Psychical Research, and the Ghost Club. He can be found on the web at www.ruickbie.com and www.witchology.com. He is the author of A Brief Guide to Ghost Hunting.