Road to Total Freedom, The
by Roy Wallis. Columbia University Press. 1977
This is possibly the earliest relatively impartial book on Scientology and its history. It is not written by an Ex-Scientologist or a reporter, but by a sociologist. He says in his preface:
- I began my work on Scientology as a raw graduate student, fascinated by the relationship between beliefs, social organisation and society. While I had initially intended that Scientology be considered as one amongst a range of unorthodox system[s] of belief to which I proposed to devote attention, I found myself increasingly interested by the rich body of material I was uncovering on this multifaced movement.
To those who left, or were ex-communicated from, the "Church" during the first great exodus (1980 on), it was somewhat of a surprise to find some one had written such a book. Though a lot more data has been uncovered in the intervening years, it provided some surprises to those who had recently left or been thrown out of the Scientology "Church".
The main chapters are:
PART I The sociology of cult and sect
- 1 Cult and Sect: A Typology and a Theory
PART II The Cult and its Transformation
- 2 The Cult Phase: Dianetics
- 3 Crisis and transition
PART III The Sect: Scientology
- 4 Theory and Transmission
- 5 Social Organization and Social Control
- 6 The Scientological Career: From Casual Client to Deployable Agent
- 7 Relations with State and Society
- 8. Reality Maintenance in a Deviant Belief System
- I Special Letter from Ron Howes
- II HCO Ethics Order
- III Executive Directive from L. Ron Hubbard
- IV On Roy Wallis' Study – J.L.Simmons, PhD
The book is 282 pages, hardbound 15 cms x 24 cms and is published by Columbia University Press, New York, but the edition seen here is printed in Great Britain. It contains a fair amount of the data on Scientology that has been later published [a fuller summary needed and therefore invited].
The four page Appendix by J.L. Simmons, Ph.D. states in the second sentence "Unfortunately his [Roy Wallis'] study has little to do with Dianetics and Scientology, his subject matter." and suggests near the end "Get a copy of Dianetics Modern Science of Mental Health and read it along with this book. See for yourself which is more alive and hopeful and scientifically objective."
Reference[edit | edit source]
There is a scanned in copy of the book at http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Library/Shelf/wallis/wallis1.txt . The first four full paragraphs at that link are not part of the book but a description of the book. This scan in could be valuable to deeply interested, containing data from early Dianetic and Scientology times which may not be available elsewhere, and data which may corroborate or amplify other sources. The scanning leaves something to be desired, involving patience in sorting out footnotes (of which there are quite a few) from main text and uncorrected spelling (scanning) mistakes.