Joseph Chilton Pearce

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Joseph Chilton Pearce
Born January 14, 1926
Pineville, Kentucky, U.S.
Died August 23, 2016 (aged 90)
Other names Joe
Occupation author, lecturer

Joseph Chilton Pearce (January 14, 1926 – August 23, 2016) was an American author of a number of books on human development and child development and is best known for his books, The Crack in the Cosmic Egg (1971), Magical Child (1977) and The Bond of Power: Meditation and Wholeness (1981).[1] He preferred the name "Joe".[2]

Early life and background[edit]

Pearce was born January 14, 1926, in Pineville, Kentucky, US.[3] He served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. He graduated with a BA from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, received a Master of Arts degree from Indiana University, and did post-graduate studies at Geneva Theological College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.[3]


Pearce taught college humanities until the mid-1960s, and thereafter devoted himself to writing and lecturing. In the following decades, he has written on themes ranging from child development, mind-heart connection and themes in spirituality, in over 12 books.[3][4]

He presented the idea of the heart, or compassionate mind, as a category of brain function equal in stature to the thalamus, prefrontal cortex and lower brain.[5] Pearce believed that active, imaginative play is the most important of all childhood activities because it cultivates mastery of one's environment, which he terms "creative competence." Children denied that form of play develop feelings of isolation and anxiety.[6] He also believed that child-parent bonding is crucial, and sees modern clinical childbirth and lack of breast feeding as obstructions to that bonding.[7] Pearce died in August 2016 at the age of 90.[8][9]



  1. ^ Myrtle Heery; Maia Madden (February 1982). 'Joseph Chilton Pearce: The Bond of Power. Yoga Journal. pp. 5–8. ISSN 0191-0965. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  2. ^ Mercogliano, Chris and Debus, Kim, Interview. Journal Of Family Life magazine, Vol. 5 #1 1999.
  3. ^ a b c "Joseph Chilton Pearce , brief bio". Tanglewood II Symposium - Presenters and Panelists. Boston University College of Fine Arts. 2007. Retrieved 2 September 2010. 
  4. ^ "Very Happy Intelligent Children..". The Montreal Gazette (Google News Archive). September 26, 1984. p. 47. Retrieved 2013-08-22. 
  5. ^ Peirsman (2006) p.14
  6. ^ Rosemond (2001) p.218
  7. ^ Mercogliano (2003) p.191
  8. ^ Honoring the Passing of Joseph Chilton Pearce
  9. ^ Chilton Pearce January 14, 1926 – August 23, 2016
  • Mercogliano, Chris (2003) Teaching the Restless: One School's Remarkable No-Ritalin Approach ISBN 0-8070-3246-8
  • Rosemond, John (2001) New Parent Power! ISBN 0-7407-1415-5
  • Peirsman, Etienne and Peirsman, Neeto (2006) Craniosacral Therapy for Babies and Small Children ISBN 1-55643-597-5

External links[edit]