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18 Lyman Lloyd Bryson

Page history last edited by sarah ibrahim 9 years, 5 months ago

July 11, 1888- November 24, 1959


Lyman Lloyd Bryson


Great Commentator, Forum Leader, and Educator



Personal Data 


Born: July 11, 1888 in Valentine, NE

Died: November 24, 1959 in Ann Arbor, MI

Wife was an artist.




1913-1917 Instructor, University of Michigan
1932 Director of Teachers College’s California Summer School
1934-1959 Professor, Teachers College at Columbia
1935-1945 Office of War Information. Consultant on public affairs for the Columbia Broadcasting System



B.A., 1910, University of Michigan

M.A., 1915, University of Michigan


Membership-Professional Organizations 

American Red Cross, volunteer, 1918-1924

Consultant, UNESCO Secretariat


Publications and Books


1936 Adult Education. New York: American Book Co.
1939 Which Way America?: Communism-Fascism-Democracy. New York: The Macmillan Co.
1941 New Prometheus. New York: Macmillan
1946 Science and Freedom. New York: Columbia City Press
1952 The Next America: Prophecy and Faith. New York: Harper and Brothers
1916 Smokey Roses. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
1947 Bryson., L., Finkelstein, L., MacIver, R.,  Approaches to Group Understanding: Sixth Symposium. New York: Harper & Brothers Publishers
1948 Bryson, L., Ackerman, W., Stewart, G.. Time for Reason about Radio: From a Series of Broadcasts on CBS.New York: George W. Stewart, Publisher, Inc.

He was a frequent guest on the radio game show Information, Please He also served as a consultant to the CBS radio and television networks where he moderated the program

Host of "Presidential Straws in the Wind" (1948) TV series "We Take Your Word" (1950) TV series .... Himself/panelist (1950) "U.N. Casebook" (1948) TV series .... Moderator

Interested in books written for the average adult reader.

Set up the Reading Laboratory at Teachers College of Columbia University

Director of their Great Books program, An Invitation to Learning.


Major Contributions to Adult Education

Perhaps Bryson's greatest contribution was the influence he had on two of his students, Irving Lorge and Rudolf Flesch. Irving Lorge would develop the first simple-to-use readability formula, which was widely used by the government and military services during WWII. Rudolf Flesch's would revolutionize the language of journalism and communications in the U.S.

Established a middle position in adult education: “Even though we can establish this distinction between teaching and leading, we must allow that many workers in the field play both roles, not at once, but in relation to different students, or at different times, in different activities.”

On CBS show,  he discussed the philosophers from the Greeks to Bertrand Russell over CBS radio beginning in 1938 (The People's Platform, Invitation to Learning), broadcast literate conversations with such contemporary thinkers as Arnold Toynbee and Albert Einstein


Interesting Quotes


  • "I suppose I could properly be called a humanist; at any rate, that name has often been applied to me by friendly critics, and I would be most sympathetic with “naturalistic humanism.” However, I would be inclined to assimilate this with classical humanism, although the writings of some of the men cannot be taken to express my point of view. It seems to me quite wrong to suppose that classical humanism must be as anti-democratic as are the ideas of men like Babbitt and T. S. Eliot."        



     “The error of youth is to believe that intelligence is a substitute for experience, while the error of age is to believe experience is a substitute for intelligence.” 
   Lyman Bryson          






Bryson, L. (n.d.). Approaches to Group Understanding: Sixth Symposium. Retrieved November 21, 2014,

         from https://www.questia.com/library/61966466/approaches-to-group-understanding-sixth-symposium


Brockett, R. (1989). Early ideas on the training of adult leaders for education,” Breaking New Ground: The Development of

     Adult and Workers’ Education in North America, Proceedings from the Syracuse University Kellogg Project's First Visiting


Bryson, L. (n.d.). The Next America: Prophecy and Faith. Retrieved November 21, 2014,

     From: links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0003-1224(195210)17%3A5%3C632%3ATNAPAF%3E2.0.CO%3B2-S


Bryson, L. (n.d.). Smoky Roses. Retrieved November 21, 2014,

      from http://books.google.com/books?id=NtQ0AAAAMAAJ&printsec=titlepage&dq=Lyman Bryson&source=gbs_summary_r&cad=0


Bryson, L. (n.d.). Infoplease. Retrieved November 21, 2014,

   from http://www.infoplease.com/encyclopedia/people/bryson-lyman.html


Bryson, L. (n.d.). Answers.com.Retrieved November 21, 2014, .

     From: http://www.answers.com/topic/bryson-lyman


Lymon Bryson. (n.d). The Internet Movie Database. Retrieved June 2, 2008.

     From: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0117465/


Obituaries.(1959).Time, Dec. 7. Retrieved June 2, 2008.

     From: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,811548,00.html


Plain Language at Work Newsletter ( 2004). Retrieved :June 1, 2008.

     From: http://www.impact-information.com/impactinfo/newsletter/plwork13.htm



Psychoanalytic Quarterly,17:116-118 (1948). Retrieved: June 1, 2008.

     From: http://www.pep-web.org/document.php?id=PAQ.017.0116A


Scholar conference in the history of adult education. Retrieved on June 2, 2008.

 From: http://www-.diistance.syr.edu/breaking.html


Time for Reason about Radio: From a Series of Broadcasts on CBS. (n.d.). Retrieved November 21, 2014,

       from https://www.questia.com/read/22850649/time-for-reason-about-radio-from-a-series-of-broadcasts


 Bryson, L. (n.d.). Which Way America? Communism - Fascism - Democracy. Retrieved November 21, 2014,

         from https://www.questia.com/library/1952190/which-way-america-communism-fascism-democracy




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