Reading Experience Database

Basic Search

Advanced Search

Record 18738

Reading Experience:

Monday 8 March 1937: 'What I noticed on the walk to Cockfosters [on 6 March] were: [records various observations] [...] then the tramps [...] The middle aged woman was trying to make a fire: a man in townish clothes was lying on his side in the grass [...] When we [Woolf and husband Leonard] came back after an hour the woman had got the fire to burn [...] She was cutting a slice of bread off a loaf, but there was no butter. At night it became very cold, & as we sat down to our duck L. said he wondered how they [s]pent the night. I said probably they go to the workhouse. This fitted in well with What shall we do then, wh. I read in the train. But incidentally I'm not so much impressed as I expected by it. Vivid, but rather wordy so far.'
Century: 1900-1945
Date: 6 Mar 1937
Country: England
Time: n/a
Place: other location: On board train
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:Virginia Woolf
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth 25 Jan 1882
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: Writer
Religion: agnostic
Country of origin: England
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: Leo Tolstoy
Title: What Then Must We Do?
Genre: Essays / Criticism, Social Science, Geography / Travel, Politics
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 18738  
Source - Print  
  Author: Virginia Woolf
  Editor: Anne Olivier Bell
  Title: The Diary of Virginia Woolf
  Place of Publication: London
  Date of Publication: 1984
  Vol: 5
  Page: 66
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Virginia Woolf, Anne Olivier Bell (ed.), The Diary of Virginia Woolf (London, 1984), 5, p. 66,, accessed: 03 February 2023

Additional comments:

Text read conjecturally identified by source ed.; see p.65 n.2, which accompanies Diary entry for 7 March 1937, in which Woolf records: 'To Cockfosters yesterday, & saw the old tramp woman on the bank, lighting a damp fire & eating dry bread. I took What shall we do then in my pocket.'



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