What does it mean to be human? Human development unfolds in a twofold way. On the one hand, there is an ever-more profound incarnation, or “inhabitation,” of the physical body. On the other hand, there is the increasing discrimination of the individual objects of the world.
Difficulties and obstacles along this path can lead to so-called disabilities. König’s approach to curative education allows us to see these disabilities as meaningful ways of coping with or resolving the various problems that arise in living in a physical body. From this point of view, “disabilities” are exaggerated forms of ways we all use to cope with life.
“The point is not only to see the deviations, but to see them against the mighty backdrop of a comprehensive child anthropology.” Being Human presents the outline of just such a comprehensive anthropology.
Being Human is of value not only to those working in special education, but to anyone interested in the dynamics of incarnation and “normal” development.
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Foreword by Michaela Glöckler
Introduction by Cornelius Pietzner
Three Ways of Diagnosing
Some Guiding Images in the Area of Motor Disturbances: The Lonely Individual
Some Guiding Images in the Area of Sensory Disturbances
The Problem of Right and Left
The World of Language
The Gestalt of the Child
An Introduction to Convulsive Disorders
Different Types of Convulsive Disorders
Epilepsy and Hysteria
Karl König (1902–1966) was born in Vienna, in Austria-Hungary, the only son of a Jewish shoemaker. He studied medicine at the University of Vienna and graduated in 1927, with a special interest in embryology. After graduating, he was invited by Ita Wegman to work in her Klinisch-Therapeutisches Institut, a clinic in Arlesheim, Switzerland for people with special needs. He married Mathilde Maasberg in 1929. Dr. König was appointed paediatrician at the Rudolf Steiner-inspired Schloß Pilgrimshain institute in Strzegom, where he worked until 1936, when he returned to Vienna and established a successful medical practice. Owing to Hitler's invasion of Austria, he was forced to flee Vienna to Aberdeen, Scotland, in 1938. Dr. König was interned briefly at the beginning of World War II, but on his release in 1940 he set up the first Camphill Community for Children in Need of Special Care at Camphill on the outskirts of Aberdeen. From the mid-1950s, König began more communities, including one in North Yorkshire, the first to care for those beyond school age with special needs. In 1964, König moved to Brachenreuthe near Überlingen on Lake Constance, Germany, where he set up another community, where he died in 1966.
Dr. Michaela Glöckler has been Leader of the Medical Section at the Goetheanum, the School of Spiritual Science in Dornach, Switzerland since 1988. She attended the Waldorf School in Stuttgart, then studied German language, literature, and history in Freiburg and Heidelberg. She studied medicine in Tübingen and Marburg and trained as a pediatrician at the community hospital in Herdecke and at the Bochum University Pediatric Clinic. Until 1988 she was a colleague in the children’s outpatient clinic at the Community Hospital in Herdecke and served as school doctor for the Rudolf Steiner School in Witten, Germany. Michaela has many publications in German, many of which have been published in English.