restricted access Enchanting Modernism: Mary Butts, Decadence, and the Ethics of Occultism

This article argues that both decadent writers and Mary Butts utilized sickness and the occult to alter perception and evade the strictures of bourgeois religiosity and experience. It looks at Butts's brief and troubled alliance with Aleister Crowley to demonstrate how she developed an ethics of occultism that sought to heal those sickened by modernity and then examines her literary experiments with magic through readings of her short stories "Mappa Mundi" and "Brightness Falls." Butts sought to create literature that revealed magic's latent presence in a disenchanted world and demonstrate its rejuvenating potential.