‘He [Harwood] is the sole Horatio known to me in this age of Hamlets…’ – C. S. Lewis, from Surprised by Joy Cecil Harwood (1898-1975) – lecturer, Waldorf teacher, writer, editor and anthroposophist – pioneered and developed the first Rudolf Steiner (Waldorf) school in the United Kingdom (the New School in London, now Michael Hall School in Sussex). He also led the Anthroposophical Society in Great Britain for some 37 years. In 1922, at the age of 24, Harwood attended a festival of English folk song and dance in Cornwall, alongside his life-long friend Owen Barfield. It was here – and not in the academic citadel of Oxford University, where they were both part of the literary circle known as the Inklings – that Harwood and Barfield were to encounter the work of Rudolf Steiner through meeting Daphne Olivier. Sun King’s Counsellor provides an intricate picture of the human connections, cultural movements and spiritual background that contributed to what came together in Cornwall in 1922, leading to Harwood’s life’s work. Featuring a colour plate section and full index, it documents Harwood’s early years and antecedents, marriages to Daphne Olivier and Margaret Lundgren, friendships with Barfield and C.S. Lewis, his life-changing meeting with anthroposophy and Rudolf Steiner, teaching and educational work, and Harwood’s critical role in healing divisions within the Anthroposophical Society. Based on extensive research of primary sources, Blaxland-de Lange’s biography reveals the multi-faceted, flexible and sacrificial nature of this unique personality. Alfred Cecil Harwood – he preferred ‘Cecil’ instead of Alfred, with its meaning of ‘wise counsellor’ – began his career with the hope of becoming a writer, and had neither the intention nor ambition to become a teacher or the head of a national organization. Yet he became both an exemplary teacher and leader, as well as a celebrated author, editor, translator and lecturer.
A.C. Harwood The following brief excerpts from the Report of the Summer School77 published in the September 1938 issue of the same journal testify both to Harwood's many-sided activities on behalf of the Society—and the same issue ...
Author: Simon Blaxland-de Lange
Publisher: Temple Lodge Publishing