Bob Curran’s A Haunted Mind: A Request for Help

There’s been some excitement lately over Dr. Bob Curran’s latest book, A Haunted Mind:  Inside the Dark, Twisted World of H. P. Lovecraft.  Lovecraft fans and scholars claim the book contains serious inaccuracies when referring to HPL, while Dr. Bob Curran asserts that everything can be traced back to his readings.

A few days ago, Dr. Curran responded to his critics, as well as to my requests for more information, by posting a list of sources on his blog.  Sadly, for some reason Dr. Curran decided to take almost all of his Lovecraft posts down the following day.  Fortunately, I managed to save most of them, including the list of sources provided below.

At this point, I’m having trouble tracking down these sources in WorldCat, Irish library catalogs, and other likely places.  Perhaps my readers can think of some options to help us locate what seem to be quite interesting material.

The two pieces, held in a “restricted clerical collection in England” according to Dr. Curran, are of particular interest and might contain information on Lovecraft not provided elsewhere.  Still, I’d like to view the rest as well.  Any help you can provide would be appreciated.

Reverend J. D. C. Marshall, Papers on Religion and Literature, vols. 5-6 (1948-51)

Reverend J. D. C. Marshall, Supplementary Papers, vols. 1-3 (1963)

Thomas Kellow:  Epistemological Perspectives on American Literature, vol. 3 (1937) notes by Balmer and Kemble (1969-1970) (it’s unclear as to whether Kellow is part of the title or the author)

B. Keith and A. Saunders, The Voynich Manuscript;  Possible Hagiographies

D. Birley, Occult Literature and Its Consequences (1968)

Tales of Irish Fantasy (listed as being at the library in Thurles; that institution has no knowledge of it)

Davis and Speer, Hermeneutic and Phenomenological Literature

Willaim Irvine, Lovecraft and Nazism

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Published in: on September 15, 2012 at 8:52 am  Comments (10)  

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  1. Oddly when I google many of these titles, this blog post is the first to appear. Are we trapped in an infinite time loop?

  2. The second last title should probably be “hermeneutic and phenomenological”. Not thst it makes any difference – I suspect the only way to read these texts is with an MRI scan of “Dr” bob’s brain.

    • Let me straighten that one out… I believe you’ve run some searches on these yourself, correct?

      • Probably the same as you – I checked WorldCat, Google Scholar and the National Library of Australia, which has a catalogue crosslinked to various other national libraries. Nothing. I’m willing to believe that the first two might be some persons’s private papers deposited in a collection somewhere, but I think Bob made them all up just to try to pretend that he had access to resources noone else did. Marshall apparently is a real author though, there are books by him on Irish folklore on Amazon UK.
        I am investigating Bob’s credentials instead. After some digging, it appears that he claims his PhDs are from the University of Ulster. They have one thesis by a Robert Curran on file, but since he also claims to have an MA from there it might just be his Masters. I have written to the University and to the Office of the Chief Minister, where he claimed to be employed as a peace negotiator, to check if he holds any of these qualifications or positions. No response yet, but these things take a bit of time.
        I am extremely skeptical that someone who spends the amount of time on book promotion tours and writing that Bob does also holds down a high-profile government job. Possibly he is a multi-talented polymath with a short fuse and poor spelling and sloppy research habits. Possibly, because he sells to a market based on credulity, no-one has bothered to check his grandiose and overlapping claims. Possibly I’m just a suspicious crypto-fascist lovecraftial elite fundamentalist.

  3. He does seem to have a PhD in education from the University of Ulster

    http://openlibrary.org/works/OL10362262W/The_wisdom_of_teaching

    From 1989, entitled

    The wisdom of teaching human experience and discussion in the classroom.

    • Only the PhD in History and the one in Psychology remain unaccounted for, then.

      • I don’t know that it is about education, it could be psychology. But the title suggests such.

  4. Hello, I didn’t find any of the books nor the authors, in google, what is suspicious, I searched also in http://www.vialibri.net a data base of antiguarian booksellers with millions of books, and also I didn’t see anything, only two books about fairy tales with almost the same title, and the same writer.

    Peter Haining
    Great Irish Tales of Fantasy and Myth
    Barnes Noble Books, January 1753. Hardcover Hardcover.

    Peter Haining (ed)
    The Wild Night Company: Irish Tales of Fantasy and Horror
    Victor Gollancz – 1970. Hardcover. 287pp. First edition. Reprints stories by Joyce, Yeats, Coppard, G. Moore, Wilde, Carleton et al; also includes an introduction and short story by Ray Bradbury. Light shelfwear but o/w in excellent condiiton. First edition copy. . .

  5. Like everyone else I’ve drawn a complete blank on the titles quoted.
    Someone could always check copies of Crockford’s Directory for the periods the Rev. J. D. C. Marshall was supposedly writing his papers. Assuming he was an Anglican (and assuming he existed) I’m sure such a prolific writer on the subject of religion would be listed.
    The contemporary author J. D. C. (or Jon) Marshall is an archaeologist, local historian and fellow of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland who specialises in the history of the north Antrim coast – coincidentally the area in which Bob Curran lives.
    According to the interview here,
    http://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/local/the-murky-secrets-of-the-family-name-1-1852725
    he was 53 in 2007, which makes him too young to be the Rev. J.D.C.
    At a push, “J. D. C.” Marshall could itself be a family name that Jon inherited. He shouldn’t be too difficult to track down if someone wanted to ask him whether a clergyman of that name was amongst his immediate forebears.

  6. Lovecraft’s Fascism was a pamphlet released by Grimwald (pseudonym) in New Zealand several years back. Grimwlad is pro-fascist himself. It contains the odd quote praising the future supremacy of the Japanese or something, from Letters.

    George Noory on Coast to Coast AM is threatening to interview Curran tomorrow, October 19, 2012. Likely there will be a chance to call in, if anyone feels the spirit move them to refute yet more disinformed material on HPL.


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