Alexander Sutherland Neill

Alexander Sutherland Neill Quotes

United Kingdom, Author
October 17, 1883September, 23, 1973.

Alexander Sutherland Neill was a Scottish educator and author known for his school, Summerhill, and its philosophies of freedom from adult coercion and community self-governance. Neill was raised in Scotland, where he was a poor student but became a schoolteacher. He taught in several schools across the country before attending the University of Edinburgh from 1908 to 1912. He took two jobs in journalism before World War I, and taught at Gretna Green Village School during the first year of the war, writing his first book, A Dominie's Log, as a diary of his life as headteacher. He joined the staff of a school in Dresden in 1921, founding Summerhill upon his return to England in 1924. Summerhill received widespread renown in the 1920s to 1930s and then in the 1960s to 1970s, due to progressive and counter-culture interest. Neill wrote 20 books in his lifetime, and his best seller was the 1960 Summerhill, a compilation of four previous books about his school. The book was a common ancestor to activists in the 1960s free school movement.

Also known as Educator

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