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A Hobsonian Handbook
by Jon Racherbaumer


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A Hobsonian Handbook by Jon Racherbaumer

Explorations, examples, and routines using equivoque.

Hobson's Choice: the choice of taking either what is offered or nothing else; the absence of choice. [after Thomas Hobson (1544-1631) of Cambridge, England, who rented horses and gave only one choice, that of the horse nearest the stable door]
Equivoque or Magician's Choice in its myriad of forms is considered a First Principle by students of mentalism. What fascinates me is the elusiveness of this subject because no one has yet written a definitive, synoptic, and detailed magnum opus on the subject. There have been good piecemeal accounts written here and there about and most magicians understand how it basically works in specific cases; however, trying to ferret out its emergent properties, formulate laws and rules, and provide a flexible, procedural calculus in a systematic way has not been done to date. Phil Goldstein's Verbal Control, written almost 30 years ago is one of the best short introductions extant, and back then Goldstein confessed that it was "a treatise on the under-explored art of equivoque."

Under explored, indeed.

Nevertheless, being able to masterfully and strategically apply equivoque when necessary separates the men from the boys. Some of the proven masters are Max Maven, David Berglas, Chan Canasta, Edward Marlo, Barrie Richardson, Bob Farmer, and Eugene Burger.

This ebook is a brief exploration of this intriguing, underexplored technique to further stimulate students to think about what they are doing (or should be doing) when they are applying this powerful principle.

  • Introduction
  • Preface
  • Rules of the Game
  • Two Object Equivoque
  • Three Object Equivoque
  • Marlo's Three Object Equivoque
  • Five Object Equivoque (Max Maven)
  • Smith's 52 Object Equivoque
  • Marlo's Pellet Classic

1st edition 2019, PDF 24 pages.
word count: 6490 which is equivalent to 25 standard pages of text