Fortunately there are two good sources that I have been reading recently that have provided a great deal of information on this topic already. The first is a blog called Hermetic Lessons, in particular I am referring to these blog entries:
- The WMT - What went wrong?
- The WMT - What went wrong? II
- The WMT - What went wrong? III
- The WMT - Addressing the Failure Rate and
- The WMT - Falling out of Fashion
There are two issues that I have with the book: 1. the first is a minor one is mixing up the letters Kuf and Kaf at the beginning of the book about the spelling of the word Kabbalah in Hebrew. 2. is to do with the attribution of planets to letters and Sephirot - unlike the author of this excellent book I do believe that there is a significance to why certain Rabbinic practitioners of Kabbalah differ in their planetary attributions.
However, these two relatively small issues aside - the book does a really good job of highlighting when dogma and a need for conformity crept in to the transmission of WMT. How this shaped later writers and how they could have avoided mis-attributions due to misunderstanding. In fairness some of these misunderstandings are due to the changes put in to works translated by the Christian Kabbalists - but even so there were plenty of good English Hebrew dictionaries when the earlier WMT writers were around.
Today when translation from Hebrew to English is so easy an undertaking - there is very little to prevent anyone from taking some of the earlier works and comparing, contrasting, and (Heaven forbid) correcting some of these inspiring books. Except perhaps dogma, a desire for departure from the early Kabbalah in order to assert one's own identity as a Tradition, or perhaps as Blogos points out... WMT is just falling out of fashion.