Dora Marsden

Freewoman and Egoist
1882 – 1960

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Now ends our Dora Marsden tumblr.

Read more here.

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My universes = My body plus My external world.

Egoism makes this important alteration upon transporting the terms:

My universe minus My body = 0.

The Egoist, Volume 6 Number 3, July 1919

The thrill is the memory, the aroma of far-off fair deeds: the swoon is the suspension of intellect which allows vague association to make these deeds appear in part as one’s own. Deeds, mark you, are definite things.

The Freewoman, Volume 1 Number 1, June 15th 1913

She has pinioned herself with words - words - words, and these, not her own.

The Freewoman, Volume 1 Number 1, June 15th 1913

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Women will push open the door of the super-world.

- DM quoted in Dora Marsden and Early Modernism by Bruce Clarke, page 122.

Life has no law, save that of its own being. It is not to be interpreted in accordance with laws of matter, a fact of which women are more aware than men, thanks to the freedom from the over-great struggle with the world of matter - of dead resistance - from which they have induced men to relieve them.

- DM quoted in Dora Marsden and Early Modernism by Bruce Clarke, page 78.

The “EGO,” additionally to what is connoted by the WORLD-EXCLUSIVE “I,” includes also the rest of the universe, spiritual and material. Therefore from the “EGO” nothing can be discriminated as distinct or separate. It is the Universe in which “ALL” is comprehended and unified. Beyond, no room is left for feeling, thought, breath, or word. Among the items contained within it must be:

(a) That which is signified by the normal subject “I” (however that may hereinafter be defined).

(b) Any particularized feeling which by means of the Predicate “PERCEIVE” can be comprehended under the head of grammatical OBJECT.

(c) Any particularized form of activity denoted by PREDICATES additionally to that of the elemental predicate “PERCEIVE.”

(d) All that is signified by EXTENSIONS of PREDICATES: therefore, the relations of SPACE and TIME.

(e) All RELATIONS between THINGS, therefore: The “ORDER OF NATURE.”

(f) All GODS OR GOD (however these may be defined).

(g) All supposed “EGOS.”

Plainly this “EGO” is a conception not recognized by common language. Its nearest conception in everyday language is “UNIVERSE.”

The Egoist, Volume 3 Number 9, September 1916

Observation of individual men would never have led to the formulation of the static conceptions upon which the democratic edifice is founded, such as justice, equality, fraternity, order. These are based not on the traits of living men but upon schemes for the aggrandizement of mere thought-creations - “humanity”- “mankind.” Indeed the “characteristics of men” - are something to be explained away, something to be overcome in the interests of “mankind.”

The New Freewoman, Volume 1 Number 3, July 15th 1913

Democracy is a special form of government, that is, a particular form of according to some or all the privilege of meddling with the lives of the rest.

The New Freewoman, Volume 1 Number 3, July 15th 1913

Democracy viewed on its own merits of course reveals itself almost as a mathematical error. Starting from an aversion towards the tyranny of One - the historic Tyrant - the impulse towards democracy has spread tyranny - i.e. government - through a wider area, through oligarchy, and plutocracy, the Few, and the Rich, and presses onwards as to a desired goal, to the government of All by All.

The New Freewoman, Volume 1 Number 3, July 15th 1913