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Newfoundland PhD graduate becomes province’s first doctor of magic

Peter Duchemin is the closest thing to a real life Harry Potter. 

The 43-year-old part-time magician was recently certified as a doctor of magic. 

Duchemin completed the interdisciplinary PhD program at Newfoundland’s Memorial University after he defended his thesis, “The Art of Hidden Causation: Magic as Deep Mediation.”

This made Duchemin the province’s first certified doctor in this area of speciality, according to CBC News

“Magic is the creating of an effect and the hiding of the cause of the effect,” he told CBC.

Duchemin said that his doctorate program was a mixture of various subjects that include literature, history, linguistics and philosophy. However, his thesis, which he said took him about a decade to write, argues that magic exists in a philosophical sense. 

In his thesis, Duchemin refers to meditation that he says happens when you present an idea to someone, such as telling a story or drawing a picture. 

“When I say mediation, I mean the creative capacity to change the world — to create a world out of language, out of thought, out of illusion,” he said. “There’s something profoundly creative in the human ability to make and mediate worlds.”

 The certified wizard, added that what he outlines in his thesis will be significant for enhancing his own magic tricks. 

“Focusing it, and directing it and causing change in conformity with will is the famous formula, but that’s what’s here for and I’ve created a piece of work that operates for me almost like a battery,” he said. 

Duchemin, who currently lives in Hong Kong with his wife, said that in addition to his gig as a magician, he also keeps busy trying to learn Chinese and occasionally dabbles in kung fu.