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The Biodynamic Movement in Britain

A History of the First 100 Years

April 2024
More details
  • Publisher
    Floris Books
  • ISBN 9781782508694
  • Language English
  • Pages 180 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9.2"

“A new and very different approach to our understanding of the earth and its evolution is rapidly gaining credence.... This new approach is one in which the whole earth is conceived of as a living, self-regulating organism in which each species and every part of the earth is recognized as existing for the benefit and greater wellbeing of the whole.... As part of a greater whole, each organism is then mutually dependent on every other.... The extent and breadth of biodynamic agriculture is such that there is hardly a sphere of life untouched by it.” — Bernard Jarman

Biodynamics grew out of Rudolf Steiner's Agriculture Course, a series of lectures given in 1924. It is now an inspirational worldwide movement that brings a uniquely holistic, organic agriculture to farms, vineyards, and gardens.

In this concise and fascinating history, Bernard Jarman—former Director of the Biodynamic Agricultural Association for the UK—charts the development of biodynamics in Britain, from its arrival in 1928 up to the present day. He presents engaging personal portraits of biodynamic pioneers, including Daniel Dunlop, George Adams, Lili Kolisko, Marna Pease, and Ehrenfried Pfeiffer, as well as accounts of early discoveries—for example, the research that led to the development of Maria Thun's annual Biodynamic Almanac, and later initiatives such as community supported agriculture (CSAs).

Jarman also examines key moments in the history of the movement, including the emergence of two rival biodynamic organizations in the 1930s and ’40s and the flourishing broader organic movement in postwar Britain, as well as the challenges posed by genetically modified crops (GMOs).

This insightful book provides an important historical overview and grounding for the biodynamic movement as it looks toward its future.

C O N T E N T S:


1. The Beginning
2. The Agriculture Course and the Experimental Circle
3. Daniel Dunlop and the Anthroposophical Agricultural Foundation
4. The Challenge of the 1930s
5. The Early Discoveries
6. The Organic Midwife
7. Ehrenfried Pfeiffer
8. Biodynamics in Postwar Britain
9. Another Dimension
10. Community Supported Agriculture
11. More Recent Initiatives
12. A Challenging Start to the New Millennium
13. Toward a Biodynamic Future

1. Office Holders of the Anthroposophical Agricultural Foundation (AAF)
2. Office Holders of the Biodynamic Association (BDA)
3. Office Holders of the Biodynamic Agricultural Association (BDAA)

Picture Credits

Bernard Jarman

Bernard Jarman worked as an apprentice on a biodynamic farm in Germany before running a hill farm in Botton Camphill Village, North Yorkshire. He was Executive Director of the Biodynamic Agricultural Association in the UK for fifteen years and continues to teach courses in biodynamic agriculture around the world. He lives in Stroud, England.