“A tale of high adventure, courage, tragedy… a close, articulate look of a dimly known side of American History— it shows, firsthand the highs and potentials of the 1960’s counterculture along with the tragic factors that lead to the burying of that idealism….It’s one of the most courageous stories about a woman I’ve ever read.”
— Oz Blogspot
Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary is a scathingly honest and breathless autobiographical memoir by Joanna Harcourt-Smith, the British Jet-Set “hippie heiress” scapegoat for Timothy Leary, the Harvard psychologist “Pied Piper” of the sixties generation
Between 1972 and 1977, Joanna was Timothy Leary’s lover and voice to the outside world while Leary was in prison for three-and-a-half of those years. Tripping the Bardo is a missing piece of the Sixties puzzle Joanna Harcourt-Smith knows. As an eyewitness, she was right at the heart of it. From the Rolling Stones and Andy Warhol to the relentless FBI harassment of the political left, Tripping the Bardo moves at the fast pace of sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll that the Sixties were known for. The author’s voice is that of a spoiled and damaged socialite but with an unrelenting sense of humor and ability to bring to life an outrageous set of characters — aristocrats and drug dealers, rockers and poets, crime lords and double agents.
“An exciting, ultra-sensuous love story, it also glows with the same visionary intelligence one finds in Joanna’s interviews on Future Primitive. This combination of unsparing integrity coupled with the kind-hearted wisdom of age elevates Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary’ to a more evolved dimension than most accounts I’ve read by psychedelic pioneers.
– Geoffrey Oelsner, poet, songwriter, performer, USA
About the Author
Joanna Harcourt Smith was born in the Swiss mountains and grew up in Paris. In 1968, moved by the music and spirit of revolution sweeping through her generation, she emigrated to the United States. She met and fell in love with Dr. Timothy Leary while he was exiled in Switzerland, and was kidnapped with him by American authorities in Afghanistan. In 1983 she surrendered herself onto the path of life-long sobriety and became a celebrated chef in Philadelphia and Santa Fe. Ms. Harcourt-Smith studied with Thich Nhat Hahn in Plum Village, France, and has devoted herself to practicing the elusive way of loving kindness and compassion. Eight years ago she created futureprimitive.org/staging, a podcasting website that offers listeners insight into some of the greatest hearts and minds of our time. Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary is her second published book. Fluent in five languages, she has lived and worked all over the world, and now lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.