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Record 1060

Reading Experience:

At age fourteen, Elizabeth Bryson read Sartor Resartus, a favorite book of her father, an impoverished Dundee bookkeeper. There she encountered "the exciting experience of being kindled to the point of explosion by the fire of words", words that expressed what she had always been trying to say: "It seems that from our earliest days we are striving to become articulate, stuggling to clothe in words our vague perceptions and questionings. Suddenly, blazing from the printed page, there ARE the words, the true resounding words that we couldn't find. It is an exciting moment... 'Who am I? The thing that can say I. Who am I, what is this ME?'. I had been groping to know that since I was three". She consumed Heroes and Hero-Worship, The French Revolution and Sartor Resartus with the same intoxication'.
Century: 1850-1899
Date: 1894
Country: Scotland
Time: n/a
Place: city: Dundee
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Elizabeth Bryson
Age n/a
Gender Female
Date of Birth 1880
Socio-economic group: Clerk / tradesman / artisan / smallholder
Occupation: daughter of a bookkeeper, later a physician
Religion: n/a
Country of origin: Scotland
Country of experience: Scotland
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: Thomas Carlyle
Title: Heroes and Hero-worship
Genre: Politics, Philosophy
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 1060  
Source - Print  
  Author: Jonathan Rose
  Editor: n/a
  Title: The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes
  Place of Publication: New Haven
  Date of Publication: 2001
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 46
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Jonathan Rose, The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes (New Haven, 2001), p. 46,, accessed: 01 March 2024

Additional comments:

See Elizabeth Bryson, 'Look Back in Wonder' (Dundee, 1966), pp.80-81



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)