Carol Bailey

BA ( Cantab), MLitt (University of St Andrews)

Thesis title: 'Aspects of Identity in Late Eighteenth Century British Linguistics: from James Harris to William Jones'.
Superviser: Prof. Colin Kidd

Carol is a (very) mature student, having worked in various organisations, starting her working life at the Trades Union Congress and finishing it in the NHS, where she was a Director of Human Resources in one of the major East London hospitals. She is currently Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Charles Dickens Museum in Doughty Street, London, WC1 and a part time PhD student .

The working title of my research topic, supervised by Professor Colin Kidd, is  'Aspects of Identity in Late Eighteenth Century British Linguistics: from James Harris to William Jones'.

My research will attempt to how concerns with language--its origin and use--are interwoven with the making of the British empire from the 1750s until the turn of the century.

The four writers I have selected for this study each illustrate aspects of the various strands of identity woven into the complex tapestry of eighteenth century thought in Britain. They represent variously a tradition of classical learning, in which the identity of the Western world was governed by the supreme accomplishments of the ancient cultures of Rome and, particularly, Greece; through to the resurgence of pride in national identities and origins, based on mostly spurious romantic and counterfeit legend. They encompass debate over the origin of language in the context of a Judaeo Christian belief in the identity and origin of humanity itself, with comparison between the supposed 'natural' and civilised states of mankind; and they illustrate the way in which contact beyond the shores of Europe began to expand the way in which Britons related their own beliefs of who they were and their place in this wider world.

My four subjects of research are

* English philosopher, linguist and MP, James Harris (1709-1780)
* Scottish judge, philosopher and linguist, James Burnet, Lord Monboddo (1714-1799)
*Anglo Irish military engineer, antiquarian and linguist, General Charles Vallancey (c1725-1812)
*Anglo Welsh orientalist, jurist, philologist and polyglot scholar, Sir William Jones (1746-1794)