Infomotions, Inc.The Unpopular Review, Volume II Number 3 / Various

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Title: The Unpopular Review, Volume II Number 3
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Title: The Unpopular Review, Volume II Number 3

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VOL. II, NO. 3


Published Quarterly at 35 West 32d Street, New York, by



  Unsocial Investments                                A.S. Johnson
  A Stubborn Relic of Feudalism                       The Editor
  An Experiment in Syndicalism                        Hugh H. Lusk
  Labor: "True Demand" and Immigrant Supply           Arthur J. Todd
  The Way to Flatland                                 Fabian Franklin
  The Disfranchisement of Property                    David McGregor Means
  Railway Junctions                                   Clayton Hamilton
  Minor Uses of the Middling Rich                     F.J. Mather, Jr.
  Lecturing at Chautauqua                             Clayton Hamilton
  Academic Leadership                                 Paul Elmer More
  Hypnotism, Telepathy, and Dreams                    The Editor
  The Muses on the Hearth                             Mrs F.G. Allinson
  The Land of the Sleepless Watchdog                  David Starr Jordan
  En Casserole
    Special to our Readers--Philosophy in Fly Time--Setting Bounds
    to Laughter (A.S. Johnson)--A Post-Graduate School for Academic
    Donors (F.J. Mather, Jr.)--A Suggestion Regarding
    Vacations--Advertisement--Simplified Spelling


The "new social conscience" is essentially a class phenomenon. While it
pretends to the role of inner monitor and guide to conduct for all
mankind, it interprets good and evil in class terms. It manifests a
special solicitude for the welfare of one social group, and a mute
hostility toward another. Labor is its Esau, Capital its Jacob. Let strife
arise between workingmen and their employers, and you will see the new
social conscience aligning itself with the former, accepting at face value
all the claims of labor, reiterating all labor's formulae. The suggestion
that judgment should be suspended until the facts at issue are established
is repudiated as the prompting of a secret sin. For, to paraphrase a
recent utterance of the _Survey_, one of the foremost organs of the new
conscience, is it not true that the workers are fighting for their
livings, while the employers are fighting only for their profits? It would
appear, then, that there can be no question as to the side to which
justice inclines. A living is more sacred than a profit.

It is virtually never true, however, that the workers are fighting for
their "living." Contrary to Marx's exploded "iron law" they probably had
that and more before the trouble began. But of course we would not wish to
restrict them to a living, if they can produce more, and want all who
can't produce that much to be provided with it--and something more at the
expense of others.

It may be urged that the employer's profits also represent the livings of
a number of human beings; but this passes nowadays for a reactionary view.
"We stand for man as against the dollar." If you say that the "dollar" is
metonymy for "the man possessed of a dollar," with rights to defend, and
reasonable expectations to be realized, you convict yourself of reaction.
"These gentry" (I quote from the May _Atlantic_) "suppose themselves to be
discussing the rights of man, when all they are discussing is the rights
of stockholders." The true view, the progressive view, is obviously that
the possessors of the dollar, the recipients of profits and dividends, are
excluded from the communion of humanity. Labor is mankind.

The present instance is of course not the only instance in human history
of the substitution of class criteria of judgment for social criteria.
Such manifestations of class conscience are doubtless justified in the
large economy of human affairs; an individual must often claim all in
order to gain anything, and the same may be true of a class. Besides, the
ultimate arbitration of the claims of the classes is not a matter for the
rational judgment. What is subject to rational analysis, however, are the
methods of gaining its ends proposed by the new social conscience. Of
these methods one of wide acceptance is that of fixing odium upon certain
property interests, with a view to depriving them immediately of the
respect still granted to property interests in general, and ultimately of
the protection of the laws. It is with the rationality of what may be
called the excommunication and outlawing of special property interests,
that the present paper is concerned.

In passing, it is worth noting that the same ethical spirit that insists
upon fixing the responsibility for social ills upon particular property
interests--or property owners--insists with equal vehemence upon absolving
the propertyless evil-doer from personal responsibility for his acts. The
Los Angeles dynamiters were but victims: the crime in which they were
implicated was institutional, not personal. Their punishment was rank
injustice; inexpedient, moreover, as provocative of further crime, instead
of a means of repression. On the other hand, when it appears that the
congestion of the slum produces vice and disease, we are not urged by the
spokesmen of this ethical creed, to blame the chain of institutional
causes typified by scarcity of land, high prices of building materials,
the incapacity of a raw immigrant population to pay for better
habitations, or to appreciate the need for light and air. Rather, we are
urged to fix responsibility upon the individual owner who receives rent
from slum tenements. Perhaps we can not imprison him for his misdeeds, but
we can make him an object of public reproach; expel him from social
intercourse (if that, so often talked about, is ever done); fasten his
iniquities upon him if ever he seeks a post of trust or honor; and
ultimately we can deprive him of his property. Let him and his anti-social
interests be forever excommunicate, outlawed.


In the country at large the property interests involved in the production
and sale of alcoholic beverages are already excommunicated. The unreformed
"best society" may still tolerate the presence of persons whose fortunes
are derived from breweries or distilleries; but the great mass of the
social-minded would deny them fire and water. In how many districts would
a well organized political machine urge persons thus enriched as
candidates for Congress, the bench or even the school board? In the
prohibition territory excommunication of such property interests has been
followed by outlawry. The saloon in Maine and Kansas exists by the same
title as did Robin Hood: the inefficiency of the law. On the road to
excommunication is private property in the wretched shacks that shelter
the city's poor. Outlawry is not far distant. "These tenements must go."
Will they go? Ask of the police, who pick over the wreckage upon the
subsidence of a wave of reform. Many a rookery, officially abolished, will
be found still tenanted, and yielding not one income, but two, one for the
owner and another for the police. The property represented by enterprises
paying low wages, working men for long hours or under unhealthful
conditions, or employing children, is almost ripe for excommunication.
Pillars of society and the church have already been seen tottering on
account of revelations of working conditions in factories from which they
receive dividends. Property "affected by a public use," that is,
investments in the instrumentalities of public service, is becoming a
compromising possession. We are already somewhat suspicious of the
personal integrity and political honor of those who receive their incomes
from railways or electric lighting plants; and the odor of gas stocks is
unmistakable. Even the land, once the retreat of high birth and serene
dignity, is beginning to exhale a miasma of corruption. "Enriched by
unearned increment"--who wishes such an epitaph? A convention is to be
held in a western city in this very year, to announce to the world that
the delegates and their constituencies--all honest lovers of mankind--will
refuse in future to recognize any private title to land or other natural
resources. Holders of such property, by continuing to be such, will place
themselves beyond the pale of human society, and will forfeit all claim to
sympathy when the day dawns for the universal confiscation of land.


The existence of categories of property interests resting under a growing
weight of social disapprobation, is giving rise to a series of problems in
private ethics that seem almost to demand a rehabilitation of the art of
casuistry. A very intelligent and conscientious lady of the writer's
acquaintance became possessed, by inheritance, of a one-fourth interest in
a Minneapolis building the ground floor of which is occupied by a saloon.
Her first endeavor was to persuade her partners to secure a cancellation
of the liquor dealer's lease. This they refused to do, on the ground that
the building in question is, by location, eminently suited to its present
use, but very ill suited to any other; and that, moreover, the lessee
would immediately reopen his business on the opposite corner. To yield to
their partner's desire would therefore result in a reduction of their own
profits, but would advance the public welfare not one whit. Disheartened
by her partners' obstinacy, my friend is seeking to dispose of her
interest in the building. As she is willing to incur a heavy sacrifice in
order to get rid of her complicity in what she considers an unholy
business, the transfer will doubtless soon be made. Her soul will be
lightened of the profits from property put to an anti-social use. But the
property will still continue in such use, and profits from it will still
accrue to someone with a soul to lose or to save.

In her fascinating book, _Twenty Years at Hull House_, Miss Jane Addams
tells of a visit to a western state where she had invested a sum of money
in farm mortgages. "I was horrified," she says, "by the wretched
conditions among the farmers, which had resulted from a long period of
drought, and one forlorn picture was fairly burned into my mind.... The
farmer's wife [was] a picture of despair, as she stood in the door of the
bare, crude house, and the two children behind her, whom she vainly tried
to keep out of sight, continually thrust forward their faces, almost
covered by masses of coarse, sunburned hair, and their little bare feet so
black, so hard, the great cracks so filled with dust, that they looked
like flattened hoofs. The children could not be compared to anything so
joyous as satyrs, although they appeared but half-human. It seemed to me
quite impossible to receive interest from mortgages upon farms which might
at any season be reduced to such conditions, and with great inconvenience
to my agent and doubtless with hardship to the farmers, as speedily as
possible I withdrew all my investment." And thereby made the supply of
money for such farmers that much less and consequently that much dearer.
This is quite a fair example of much current philanthropy.

We may safely assume that, however much this action may have lightened
Miss Addams's conscience, it did not lighten the burden of debt upon the
farmer, or make the periodic interest payments less painful, and it
certainly did put them to the trouble and contingent expenses of a new
mortgage. The moral burden was shifted, to the ease of the philanthropist,
and this seems to exhaust the sum of the good results of one well
intentioned deed. Do they outweigh the bad ones?

So, doubtless, there are among our friends persons who, upon proof that
factories in which they have been interested pay starvation wages, have
withdrawn their investments. And others who, stumbling upon a state
legislature among the productive assets of a railway corporation, have
sold their bonds and invested the proceeds elsewhere. It is a modern way
of obeying the injunction, "Sell all thou hast and follow me." And not a
very painful way, since the irreproachable investments pay almost, if not
quite, as well as those that are suspect.

It is not, however, impossible to conceive of a property owner driven from
one position to another, in order to satisfy this new requirement of the
social conscience, without ever finding peace. Miss Addams put the money
withdrawn from those hideous farm mortgages into a flock of "innocent
looking sheep." Alas, they were not so innocent as they seemed. "The sight
of two hundred sheep with four rotting hoofs each was not reassuring to
one whose conscience craved economic peace. A fortunate series of sales of
mutton, wool and farm enabled the partners to end the enterprise without
loss." Sales of mutton? Let us hope those eight hundred infected hoofs are
well printed on the butcher's conscience.

And the net result of all these moral strivings? The evil investments
still continue to be evil, and still yield profits. Doubtless they rest,
in the end, upon less sensitive consciences. Marvellous moral gain!


We are bound to the wheel, say the sociological fatalists. All our efforts
are of no avail; the Wheel revolves as it was destined. Not so. Our
strivings for purity in investments, puny as may be their results in the
individual instance, may compose a sum that is imposing in its
effectiveness. How their influence may be exerted will best appear from an

It is a settled conviction among Americans of Puritan antecedents, and
among all other Americans, native born or alien, that have come under
Puritan influence, that the dispensing of alcoholic beverages is a
degrading function. This conviction has not, to be sure, notably impaired
the performance of the function. But it has none the less produced a
striking effect. It has set apart for the function in question those
elements in the population that place the lowest valuation upon the esteem
of the public, and that are, on the whole, least worthy of it. In
consequence the American saloon is, by common consent, the very worst
institution of its kind in the world. Such is the immediate result of good
intentions working by the method of excommunication of a trade.

This degradation of the personnel and the institution proceeds at an
accelerated rate as public opinion grows more bitter. In the end the evil
becomes so serious, so intimately associated with all other evils, social
and political, that you hear men over their very cups rise to proclaim,
with husky voices, "The saloon must go!" At this point the community is
ripe for prohibition: accordingly, it would seem that the initial stages
in the process, unpleasant as were their consequences, were not
ill-advised, after all. But prohibition does not come without a political
struggle, in which the enemy, selected for brazenness and schooled in
corruption, employs methods that leave lasting scars upon the body
politic. And even when vanquished, the enemy retreats into the morasses of
"unenforcible laws," to conduct a guerilla warfare that knows no rules.
Let us grant that the ultimate gain is worth all it costs: are we sure
that we have taken the best possible means to achieve our ends?

In the poorer quarters of most great American cities, there is much
property that it is difficult for a man to hold without losing the respect
of the enlightened. Old battered tenements, dingy and ill lighted
tumbledown shacks, the despair of the city reformer. Let us say that the
proximity of gas tanks or noisy railways or smoky factories consign such
quarters to the habitation of the very poor. Quite possibly, then, the
replacement of the existing buildings by better ones would represent a
heavy financial loss. The increasing social disapprobation of property
vested in such wretched forms leads to the gradual substitution of owners
who hold the social approval in contempt, for those who manifest a certain
degree of sensitiveness. The tenants certainly gain nothing from the
change. What is more likely to happen, is a screwing up of rents, an
increasing promptness of evictions. Public opinion will in the end be
roused against the landlords; the more timid among them will sell their
holdings to others not less ruthless, but bolder and more astute. Attempts
at public regulation will be fought with infinitely greater
resourcefulness than could possibly have been displayed by respectable
owners. Perhaps the final outcome will be that more drastic regulations
are adopted than would have been the case had the shifting in ownership
not taken place. There would still remain the possibility of the evasion
of the law, and it is not at all improbable that the progress in the
technique of evasion would outstrip the progress in regulation, thus
leaving the tenant with a balance of disadvantage from the process as a

The most illuminating instance of a business interest subjected first to
excommunication--literally--and then to outlawry, is that of the usurer,
or, in modern parlance, the loan shark. To the mediaeval mind there was
something distinctly immoral in an income from property devoted to the
furnishing of personal loans. We need not stop to defend the mediaeval
position or to attack it; all that concerns us here is that an opportunity
for profit--that is, a potential property interest--was outlawed. In
consequence it became impossible for reputable citizens to engage in the
business. Usury therefore came to be monopolized by aliens, exempt from
the current ethical formulation, who were "protected," for a
consideration, by the prince, just as dubious modern property interests
may be protected by the political boss.

Let us summarize the results of eight hundred years of experience in this
method of dealing with the usurer's trade. The business shifted from the
control of citizens to that of aliens; from the hands of those who were
aliens merely in a narrow, national sense, to the hands of those who are
alien to our common humanity. Such lawless, tricky, extortionate loan
sharks as now infest our cities were probably not to be found at all in
mediaeval or early modern times. They are a product of a secular process of
selection. Their ability to evade the laws directed against them is
consummate. It is true that from time to time we do succeed in catching
one and fining him, or even imprisoning him. For which risk the small
borrower is forced to pay, at a usurer's rate.

Social improvement through the excommunication of property interests is
inevitably a disorderly process. Wherever it is in operation we are sure
to find the successive stages indicated in the foregoing examples. First,
a gradual substitution of the conscienceless property holder for the one
responsive to public sentiment. Next, under the threat of hostile popular
action, the timid and resourceless property owner gives way to the
resourceful and the bold. The third stage in the process is a vigorous
political movement towards drastic regulation or abolition, evoking a
desperate attempt on the part of the interests threatened to protect
themselves by political means--that is, by gross corruption; or, if the
menaced interest is a vast one, dominating a defensible territory, by
armed rebellion, as in our own Civil War. If the interest is finally
overwhelmed politically, and placed completely under the ban of the law,
it has been given ample time to develop an unscrupulousness of personnel
and an art of corruption that long enable it to exist illegally, a lasting
reproach to the constituted authorities.


Suppression of anti-social interests by the methods in vogue amounts to
little more than their banishment to the underworld. And we can well
imagine the joy with which the denizens of the underworld receive such new
accessions to their numbers and power. For in the nature of the case, it
is inevitable that all varieties of outcasts and outlaws should join
forces. The religious schismatic makes common cause with the pariah; the
political offender with the thief and robber. Such association of elements
vastly increases the difficulty of repressing crime. The band of thieves
and robbers in the cave of Adullam doubtless found their powers of preying
vastly increased through the acquisition of such a leader as David. The
problem of mediaeval vagabondage was rendered well-nigh incapable of
solution by the fact that any beggar's rags might conceal a holy but
excommunicated friar.

Let us once more review our experience with the usurer. As an outcast he
offers his support to other outcasts, and is in turn supported by them.
The pawnbroker and the pickpocket are closely allied: without the
pawnshop, pocketpicking would offer but a precarious living; without the
picking of pockets, many pawnshops would find it impossible to meet
expenses. The salary loan shark often works hand in glove with the
professional gambler; each procures victims for the other. The
"hole-in-the-wall" or "blind tiger" provides a rendezvous for all the
outcasts of society. "Boot-legging" is a common subsidiary occupation for
the pander, the thief and the cracksman. Where it flourishes, it serves to
bridge over many a period of slack trade. Franchises whose validity is
subject to political attack, bring to the aid of the underworld some of
the most powerful interests in the community. The police are almost
helpless when confronted by a coalition of persons of wealth and
respectability with professional politicians commanding a motley array of
yeggs and thugs, pimps and card-sharpers.

Let us suppose that the developing social conscience places under the ban
receipt of private income from land and other natural resources, and that
a powerful movement aiming at the confiscation of such resources is under
way. It is superfluous to point out that the vast interests threatened
would offer a desperate resistance. The warfare against an incomparably
lesser interest, the liquor trade, has taxed all the resources of the
modern democratic state--on the whole the most absolute political
organization known. In no instance has the state come out of the struggle
completely victorious; the proscribed interest is yielding ground, if at
all, only very slowly. What, then, would be the outcome of a struggle
against the vastly greater landed interest? Perhaps the state would be
victorious in the end. But for generations the landed interest would
survive, if not by title of common law, at least by title of common
corruption. And in the course of the conflict, we can not doubt that
political disorder would flourish as never before, and that under its
shelter private vice and crime would develop almost unchecked.

We should disabuse ourselves of the notion that the will of a mere
majority is absolute in the state. The law is a reality only when the
outlawed interests represent an insignificant minority. Arbitrarily to
increase the outlawed interests is to undermine the very foundations of


The trend of the foregoing discussion, it will be said, is reactionary in
the extreme. There are, as all must admit, private interests that are
prejudicial to the public interest. Are they to be left in possession of
the privilege of trading upon the public disaster--entrenching themselves,
rendering still more difficult the future task of the reformer? By no
means. The writer opposes no criticism to the extinction of anti-social
private interests; on the contrary, he would have the state proceed
against them with far greater vigor than it has hitherto displayed. It is
important, however, to be sure first that a private interest is
anti-social. Then the question is merely one of method. It is the author's
contention that the method of excommunication and outlawry is the very
worst conceivable.

We are wont to hold up to scorn the British method of compensating liquor
sellers for licenses revoked. It is an expensive method. But let us weigh
its corresponding advantages. The licensee does not find himself in a
position in which he must choose between personal destitution and the
public interest. He dares not employ methods of resistance that would
subject him to the risk of forfeiting the right to compensation. He may
resist by fair means, but if he is intelligent, he will keep his skirts
clear of foul. If his establishment is closed, he is not left, a ruined
and desperate man, to project methods for carrying on his trade illicitly.
On the contrary, the act of compensation has placed in his hands funds in
which he might be mulcted if convicted of violation of the law. And if
natural perversity should drive him to illegal practices, he would not
find himself an object of sympathy on the part of that considerable
minority that resent injustice even to those whom they regard as

There can be little doubt that by the adoption of the principle of
adequate compensation, an American commonwealth could extinguish any
property interest that majority opinion pronounces anti-social. We may
have industries that menace the public health. Under existing conditions
the interests involved exert themselves to the utmost to suppress
information relative to the dangers of such industries. With the principle
of compensation in operation, these very interests would be the foremost
in exposing the evils in question. It is no hardship to sell your interest
to the public. Does any one feel aggrieved when the public decides to
appropriate his land to a public use? On the contrary, every possessor of
a site at all suited for a public building or playground does everything
in his power to display its advantages in the most favorable light.

And with this we have admitted a disadvantage of the compensation
principle--over-compensation. We do pay excessively for property rights
extinguished in the public interest. But this is largely because the
principle is employed with such relative infrequency that we have not as
yet developed a technique of compensation. German cities have learned how
to acquire property for public use without either plundering the private
owner or excessively enriching him. The British application of the Small
Holdings Acts has duly protected the interests of the large landholder,
without making of him a vociferous champion of the Acts.

Progressive public morality readers one private interest after another
indefensible. Let the public extinguish such interests, by all means. But
let the public be moral at its own expense.

A revolting doctrine, it will be said. Because men have been permitted,
through gross defect in the laws, to build up interests in dealing out
poisons to the public, are they to be compensated, like the purveyors of
wholesome products, when the public decrees that their destructive
activities shall cease? Because a corrupt legislature once gave away
valuable franchises, are we and our children, and our children's children,
forever to pay tribute, in the shape of interest on compensation funds, to
the heirs of the shameless grantees? Because the land of a country was
parcelled out, in a lawless age, among the unworthy retainers of a
predatory prince, must we forever pay rent on every loaf we eat--as we
should do, in fact, even if we transformed great landed estates into
privately held funds? Did we not abolish human slavery, without
compensation, and is there any one to question the justice of the act?

We did indeed extinguish slavery without compensation to the slave owners.
But if no one had ever conceived of such a policy we should have been a
richer nation and a happier one. We paid for the slaves, in blood and
treasure, many times the sum that would have made every slave owner eager
to part with his slaves. Such enrichment of the slave owner would have
been an act of social injustice, it may be said. The saying would be open
to grave doubt, but the doctrine here advanced runs, not in terms of
justice, but in terms of social expediency.

And expediency is commonly regarded as a cheap substitute for justice. It
is wrongly so regarded. Social justice, as usually conceived, looks to the
past for its validity. Its preoccupation is the correction of ancient
wrongs. Social expediency looks to the future: its chief concern is the
prevention of future wrongs. As a guide to political action, the
superiority of the claims of social expediency is indisputable.


In the foregoing argument it has been deliberately assumed that the
interests to be extinguished are, for the most part, universally
recognized as anti-social. Slavery, health-destroying adulteration, the
maintenance of tenements that menace life and morals, these at least
represent interests so abominable that all must agree upon the wisdom of
extinguishing them. The only point in dispute must be one of method. It is
the contention of the present writer that when even such interests have
had time to become clothed with an appearance of regularity, the method of
extinction should be through compensation. By its tolerance of such
interests, the public has made itself an accomplice in the mischief to
which they give rise, and accordingly has not even an equitable right to
throw the whole responsibility upon the private persons concerned.

Interests thus universally recognized to be evil are necessarily few. In
the vast majority of cases the establishment of interests we now seek to
proscribe took place in an epoch in which no evil was imputed to them. At
first a small minority, usually regarded as fanatics, attack the interests
in question. This minority increases, and in the end transforms itself
into a majority. But long after majority opinion has become adverse, there
remains a vigorous minority opinion defending the menaced interests. A
hundred years ago the distilling of spirituous liquors was almost
universally regarded as an entirely legitimate industry. The enemies of
the industry were few and of no political consequence. Today in many
communities the industry is utterly condemned by majority opinion. There
is, however, no community in which a minority honestly defending the
industry is absolutely wanting. Admitting that the majority opinion is
right, it remains none the less true that adherents of the minority
opinion would regard themselves as most grievously wronged if the majority
proceeded to a destruction of their interests.

Where moral issues alone are involved, we may perhaps accept the view that
the well considered opinion of the majority is as near as may be to
infallibility. But it is very rarely the case that the question of the
legitimacy of a property interest can be reduced to a purely moral issue.
Usually there are also at stake, technical and broad economic issues in
which majority judgment is notoriously fallible. Thus we have at times had
large minorities who believed that the bank as an institution is wholly
evil, and ought to be abolished. This was the majority opinion in one
period of the history of Texas, and in accordance with it, established
banking interests were destroyed by law. It is only within the last
fifteen years that the majority of the citizens of that commonwealth have
admitted the error of the earlier view.

In the course of the last twenty-five years, notable progress has been
made in the art of preserving perishable foods through refrigeration.
There are differences of opinion as to the effect upon the public health
of food so preserved; and further differences as to the effect of the cold
storage system upon the cost of living. On neither the physiological nor
the economic questions involved is majority opinion worthy of special
consideration. None the less, legislative measures directed against the
storage interests have been seriously considered in a large number of
states, and were it not for the difficulties inherent in the regulation of
interstate commerce, we should doubtless see the practice of cold storage
prohibited in some jurisdictions. Those whose property would thus be
destroyed would accept their losses with much bitterness, in view of the
fact that the weight of expert opinion holds their industry to be in the
public interest.

What still further exacerbates the feeling of injury on the part of those
whose interests are proscribed, is the fact that the purity of motives of
the persons most active in the campaign of proscription is not always
clear. Not many years ago we had a thriving manufacture of artificial
butter. The persons engaged in the industry claimed that their product was
as wholesome as that produced according to the time-honored process, and
that its cheapness promised an important advance in the adequate
provisioning of the people. We destroyed the industry, very largely
because of our strong bent toward conservatism in all matters pertaining
to the table. But among the influences that were most active in taxing
artificial butter out of existence, was the competing dairymen's interest.

It is asserted by those who would shift the whole burden of taxation onto
land that they are animated by the most unselfish motives, whereas their
opponents are defending their selfish interests alone. Yet a common Single
Tax appeal to the large manufacturer and the small house-owner takes the
form of a computation demonstrating that those classes would gain more
through the reduction in the burden on improvements than they would lose
through increase in burden on the land. Let it be granted that personal
advantage is not incompatible with purity of motives. The association of
ideas does not, however, inspire confidence, especially in the breasts of
those whose interests are threatened.

Extinction of property interests without compensation necessarily makes
our legislative bodies the battleground of conflicting interests. Honest
motives are combined with crooked ones in the attack upon an interest;
crooked and honest motives combine in its defense. Out of the disorder
issues a legislative determination that may be in the public interest or
may be prejudicial to it. And most likely the law is inadequately
supported by machinery of enforcement: it is effective in controlling the
scrupulous; to the unscrupulous it is mere paper. In many instances its
net effect is only to increase the risks connected with the conduct of a

When England prohibited importation of manufactures from France, the
import trade continued none the less, under the form of smuggling. The
risk of seizure was merely added to the risk of fire and flood. Just as
one could insure against the latter risks, so the practice arose of
insuring against seizure. At one time, at any rate, in the French ports
were to be found brokers who would insure the evasion of a cargo of goods
for a premium of fifteen per cent. At the safe distance of a century and a
half, the absurd prohibition and its incompetent administration are
equally comic. At the time, however, there was nothing comic in the
contempt for law and order thus engendered, in the feeling of outrage on
the part of those ruined by seizures, and in the alliance of respectable
merchants with the thieves and footpads enlisted for the smuggling trade.


It is a common observation of present day social reformers that an
excessive regard is displayed by our governmental organs for security of
property, while security of non-property rights is neglected. And this
would indeed be a serious indictment of the existing order if there were
in fact a natural antithesis between the security of property and security
of the person. There is, however, no such antithesis. In the course of
history the establishment of security of property has, as a rule, preceded
the establishment of personal security, and has provided the conditions in
which personal security becomes possible. Adequate policing is essential
to any form of security. Property can pay for policing; the person can
not. This is a crude and materialistic interpretation of the facts, but it
is essentially sound.

How much personal security existed in England, five centuries and a half
ago, when it was possible for Richard to carve his way through human flesh
to the throne? The lowly, certainly, enjoyed no greater security than the
high born. How much personal security exists in the late Macedonian
provinces of the Turkish Empire, or in northern Mexico? It is safe to
issue a challenge to all the world to produce an instance, contemporary or
historical, of a country in which property is insecure and in which human
life and human happiness are not still more insecure. On the other hand,
it is difficult to produce an instance of a state in which security of
property has long been established, in which there is not a progressive
sensitiveness about the non-propertied rights of man. It is in the
countries where the sacredness of private property is a fetich, that one
finds recognition of a universal right to education, of a right to
protection against violence and against epidemic disease, of a right to
relief in destitution. These are perhaps meagre rights; but they represent
an expanding category. The right to support in time of illness and in old
age is making rapid progress. The development of such rights is not only
not incompatible with security of property, but it is, in large measure, a
corollary of property security. Personal rights shape themselves upon the
analogy of property rights; they utilize the same channels of thought and
habit. One of the most powerful arguments for "social insurance" is its
very name. Insurance is recognized as an essential to the security of
property; it is therefore easy to make out a case for the application of
the principle to non-propertied claims.

Some may claim that the security of property has now fulfilled its
mission; that we can safely allow the principle to decay in order to
concentrate our attention upon the task of establishing non-propertied
rights. But let us remember that we are not removed from barbarism by the
length of a universe. The crust of orderly civilization is deep under our
feet: but not six hundred years deep. The primitive fires still smoke on
our Mexican borders and in the Balkans. And blow holes open from time to
time through our own seemingly solid crust--in Colorado, in West Virginia,
in the Copper Country. It is evidently premature to affirm that the
security of property has fulfilled its mission.


The question at issue, is not, however, the rights of property against the
rights of man--or more honestly--the rights of labor. The claims of labor
upon the social income may advance at the expense of the claims of
property. In the institutional struggle between the propertied and the
propertyless, the sympathies of the writer are with the latter party. It
is his hope and belief that an ever increasing share of the social income
will assume the form of rewards for personal effort.

But this is an altogether different matter from the crushing of one
private property interest after another, in the name of the social welfare
or the social morality. Such detailed attacks upon property interests are,
in the end, to the injury of both social classes. Frequently they amount
to little more than a large loss to one property interest, and a small
gain to another. They increase the element of insecurity in all forms of
property; for who shall say which form is immune from attack? Now it is
the slum tenement, obvious corollary of our social inequalities; next it
may be the marble mansion or gilded hotel, equally obvious corollaries of
the same institutional situation. Now it is the storage of meat that is
under attack; it may next be the storage of flour. The fact is, our mass
of income yielding possessions is essentially an organic whole. The
irreproachable incomes are not exactly what they would be if those subject
to reproach did not exist. If some property incomes are dirty, all
property incomes become turbid.

The cleansing of property incomes, therefore, is a first obligation of the
institution of property as a whole. The compensation principle throws the
cost of the cleansing upon the whole mass, since, in the last analysis,
any considerable burden of taxation will distribute itself over the mass.
The principle is therefore consonant with justice. What is not less
important, the principle, systematically developed, would go far toward
freeing the legislature from the graceless function of arbitrating between
selfish interests, and the administration from the necessity of putting
down powerful interests outlawed by legislative act. It would give us a
State working smoothly, and therefore an efficient instrument for social
ends. Most important of all, it would promote that security of economic
interests which is essential to social progress.


There is a persistent question regarding the distribution of property
which is of peculiar interest in the season of automobile tours and summer
hotels. Most thinking people acknowledge a good deal of perplexity over
this question, while on most parallel ones they are generally
cock-sure--on whichever is the side of their personal interests. But in
this question the bias of personal interest is not very large, and
therefore it may be considered with more chance of agreement than can the
larger questions of the same class which parade under various disguises.

The little question is that of tipping. After we have squeezed out of it
such antitoxic serum as we can, we will briefly indicate the application
of it to larger questions.

Tipping is plainly a survival of the feudal relation, long before the
humbler men had risen from the condition of status to that of contract,
when fixed pay in the ordinary sense was unknown, and where the relation
between servant and master was one of ostensible voluntary service and
voluntary support, was for life, and in its best aspect was a relation of
mutual dependence and kindness. Then the spasmodic payment was, as tips
are now, essential to the upper man's dignity, and very especially to the
dignity of his visitor. This feudal relation survives in England today to
such an extent that poor men refrain from visiting their rich relations
because of the tips. In the great country-houses the tips are expected to
be in gold, at least so I was told some years ago. And in England and out
of it, Don Cesar's bestowal of his last shilling on the man who had served
him, still thrills the audience, at least the tipped portion of it.

Europe being on the whole less removed from feudal institutions than we
are, tipping is not only more firmly established there, but more
systematized. It is more nearly the rule that servants' places in hotels
are paid for, and they are apt to be dependent entirely upon tips. The
greater wealth of America, on the other hand, and the extravagance of the
_nouveaux riches_, has led in some institutions to more extravagant
tipping than is dreamed of in Europe, and consequently has scattered
through the community a number of servants from Europe who, when here,
receive with gratitude from a foreigner, a tip which they would scorn from
an American.

In the midst of general relations of contract--of agreed pay for agreed
service, tipping is an anomaly and a constant puzzle.

It would seem strange, if it were not true of the greater questions of the
same kind, that in the chronic discussion of this one, so little
attention, if any, has been paid to what may be the fundamental line of
division between the two sides--namely, the distinction between ideal
ethics and practical ethics.

An illustration or two will help explain that distinction:

First illustration: "Thou shalt not kill" which is ideal ethics in an
ideal world of peace. Practical ethics in the real world are illustrated
in Washington and Lee, who for having killed their thousands, are placed
beside the saints!

Second illustration: Obey the laws and tell the truth. This is ideal
ethics, which our very legislatures do much to prevent being practical.
For instance; they ignore the fact that in the present state of morality,
taxes on personal property can be collected from virtually nobody but
widows and orphans who have no one to evade the taxes for them. So the
legislatures continue the attempt to tax personal property, and a judge on
the bench says that a man who lies about his personal taxes shall not on
that account be held an unreliable witness in other matters.

Or to take an illustration less radical: it is not in legal testimony
alone that ideal ethics require everybody to tell the truth, the whole
truth, and nothing but the truth--that the world should have as much truth
as possible; and if the world were perfectly kind, perfectly honest and
perfectly wise (which last involves the first two), that ideal could be
realized. For instance, in our imperfect world a man telling people when
he did not like them, would be constantly giving needless pain and making
needless enemies, whereas in an ideal world--made up of perfect people,
there would be nobody to dislike, or, pardon the Hibernicism, if there
were, the whole truth could be told without causing pain or enmity. Or
again, in a world where there are dishonest people, a man telling
everything about his schemes, would have them run away with by others,
though in an ideal world, where there were no dishonest people, he could
speak freely. In fact, the necessity of reticence in this connection does
not even depend on the existence of dishonesty: for in a world where
people have to look out for themselves, instead of everybody looking out
for everybody else, a man exposing his plans might hurry the execution of
competing plans on the part of perfectly honest people.

Farther illustration may be sufficiently furnished by the topic in hand.

In the case of most poor folks other than servants, what to do about it
has lately been pretty distinctly settled: the religion of pauperization
is pretty generally set aside: almsgiving, the authorities on ethics now
generally hold, should be restricted to deserving cases--to people
incapacitated by constitution or circumstance from taking proper care of

Now is tipping almsgiving, and are servants among the deserving classes?

How many people have asked themselves these simple questions, and how many
who are educated up to habitually refusing alms unless the last of the
questions is affirmatively answered, just as habitually tip servants?

Is tipping almsgiving? Not in the same sense that alms are given without
any show of anything in return: the servant does something for the tipper.
Yes, but he is paid for it by his employer. True, but only sometimes: at
other times he is only partly paid, depending for the rest on tips; and
sometimes the tips are so valuable that the servant pays his alleged
employer for the opportunity to get them. Yet I know one hotel in Germany,
and probably there are others, there and elsewhere, where the menus and
other stationery bear requests against tipping. But in that one hotel I
know tipping to be as rife as in hotels generally: the customers are not
educated up to the landlord's standard. And here we come to the
fundamental remedy for all questionable practices--the education of the
people beyond them. But this is simply the ideal condition in which ideal
ethics could prevail. Meanwhile we must determine the practical ethics of
the actual world.

The servant's position is different from that of most other wage-earners,
in that he is in direct contact with the person who is to benefit from his
work. The man who butchers your meat or grinds your flour, you probably
never see; but the man who brushes your clothes or waits on your table,
holds to you a personal relation, and he can do his work so as merely to
meet a necessity, or so as to rise beyond mere necessity into comfort or
luxury. Outside of home servants, the necessity is all that, in the
present state of human nature, his regular stipend is apt to provide; the
comfort or the luxury, the feeling of personal interest, the atmosphere of
promptness and cheerfulness and ease, is apt to respond only to the tip.
Only in the ideal world will it be spontaneous. In the real world it must
be paid for.

And why should it not be--why is it not as legitimate to pay for having
your wine well cooled or carefully tempered and decanted, as to pay for
the wine itself? The objection apt to be first urged is that it degrades
the servant. But does it? He is not an ideal man in an ideal world,
already doing his best or paid to do his best. You are not degrading him
from any such standard as that, into the lower one of requiring tips: you
are simply taking him as he is. True, if he got no tips, he would not
depend upon them; but without them he would not do all you want him to;
before he will do that, he must be developed into a different man--he must
become a creature of an ideal world. You may in the course of ages develop
him into that, and as you do, he will work better and better, and tips may
grow smaller and smaller, until he does his best spontaneously, and tips
have dwindled to nothing. But to withdraw them now would simply make him
sulky, and lead to his doing worse than now.

Another objection urged against tips is that they put the rich tipper at
an advantage over the poor one. But the rich man is at an advantage in
nearly everything else, why not here? The idea of depriving him of his
advantages, is rank communism, which destroys the stimulus to energy and
ingenuity that, in the present state of human nature, is needed to keep
the world moving. In an ideal state of human nature, the man with ability
to create wealth may find stimulus enough, as some do to a considerable
extent now, in the delight of distributing wealth for the general good;
but we are considering what is practicable in the present state of human

Another aspect of the case, or at least a wider aspect, is the more
sentimental one where the tip is prompted as reciprocation for spontaneous

But in the service of private families, as distinct from service to the
general public or to visitors it is notorious that constant tipping is
ruinous. Occasional holidays and treats and presents at Christmas and on
special occasions are useful, as promoting the general feeling of
reciprocation. But from visitors the tip is generally essential to
ensuring the due meed of respect. Yet we can reasonably imagine a time
when it may not be; and even now, for the casual service of holding a
horse or brushing off the dust, a hearty "thank you" is perhaps on the
whole better than a tip.

Considering the morality of the question all around--the practical ethics
as well as the ideal, the underlying facts are that no man ought to be a
servant in the servile sense, and indeed no man ought to be poor; and in
an ideal world no man would be one or the other. Just how we are to get a
world without servants or servile people, is perhaps a little more plain
than how we are to get Mr. Bellamy's world without poor people, which,
however, amounts to nearly the same thing. At least we will get a less
servile world, as machinery and organization make service less and less
personal. Bread has long been to a great extent made away from home; much
of the washing is also done away in great laundries, and organizations
have lately been started to call for men's outer clothes, and keep them
cleaned, repaired and pressed. There is a noticeable rise, too, in the
dignity of personal service: witness the college students at the summer
hotels, and the self-respecting Jap in the private family. These
influences are making for the ideal world in relation to service, and
_when_ we get it, no man will take tips, and nobody will offer them.

But in our stage of evolution, the tip, like the larger prizes, is part of
the general stimulus to the best exertion and the best feeling, and is
therefore legitimate; but it, like every other stimulus, should not be
applied in excess, and the tendency should be to abolish it. The rich man
often is led by good taste and good morals to restrain his expenditure in
many directions, and there are few directions, if any, in which good taste
and good morals more commend the happy medium than in tips. Excess in
them, however, is not always prompted by good nature and generosity and
reciprocation of spontaneous kindness, but often by desire for comfort,
and even by ostentation. But all such promptings require regulation for
the same reason that, it is now becoming generally recognized, the
promptings of even charity itself require regulation.

The head of one of the leading Fifth Avenue restaurants once said to the
writer, substantially: "We don't like tips: they demoralize our men. But
what can we do about it? We can't stop it, or even keep it within bounds.
Our customers will give them, and people who have too much money or too
little sense, give not only dollar bills or five dollar bills, but fifty
dollar bills and even hundred dollar bills. We have tried to stave off
customers who do such things: we believe that in the long run it would pay
us to; but we can't."

When all the promptings of liberality or selfishness or ostentation are
well regulated, we will be in the ideal world. Until then, in the actual
world, it is the part of wisdom to regulate ideal ethics by practical
ethics--and tip, but tip temperately.

       *       *       *       *       *

And now to apply our principles to a wider field.

The ideal is that all men should have what they produce. The ideal is also
that all men should have full shares of the good things of life. These two
ideals inevitably combine into a third--that all men should produce full
shares of the good things of life. But the plain fact is that they
cannot--that no amount of opportunity or appliances will enable the
average day laborer to produce what Mr. Edison or Mr. Hill or even the
average deviser of work and guide of labor does. Then even ideal ethics
cannot say in this actual world: Let both have the same. That would simply
be Robin Hood ethics: rob the man who produces much, and give the plunder
to the man who produces little. Hence comes the disguising of the schemes
to do it, even so that they often deceive their own devisers. What then do
practical ethics say? They can't say anything more than: Help the less
capable to become capable, so that he may produce more. But that is at
least as slow a process as raising the servant beyond the stage of tips.
Meantime the socialists are unwilling to wait, and propose to rob the
present owners of the means of production, and take the control of
industry from the men who manage it now, and put it in the hands of the
men who merely can influence votes. These men certainly are no less
selfish and dishonest than the captains of industry, and are vastly less
able to select the profitable fields of industry, and organize and
economize industry; whatever product they might squeeze out would be
vastly less than now, and it would stick to their own fingers no less than
does what the politicians handle now. Dividing whatever might reach the
people, without reference to those who produced it, could yield the
average man no more than he gets now. That's very simple mathematics. One
of the saddest sights of the day is the number of good people to whom
these facts are not self-evident.

In no state of human nature that any persons now living, or the grandchild
of any person now living, will witness, could such conditions be
permanent. Their temporary realization might be accomplished; but if it
were, the able men would not be satisfied with either the low grade of
civilization inevitable unless they worked, or with being robbed of the
large share of production that must result from their work. The more
intelligent of the rank and file, too, would rebel against the conditions
inevitably lowering the general prosperity, and they would soon realize
the difference in industrial leadership between "political generals" and
natural generals. Insurrection would follow, and then anarchy, after which
things would start again on their present basis, but some generations

But I for one do not expect these experiences, especially in America: for
here probably enough men have already become property holders to make a
sufficient balance of power for the preservation of property. If not, the
first step toward ensuring civilization, is helping enough men to develop
into property holders, and _continue_ property holders, which general
experience declares that they will not unless they develop their property


During the last twenty years New Zealand has tried many social and
economic experiments; these experiments have been made by her own
Legislature, and her own people; and as a rule they have been remarkably
successful: during the last few months she has had the experience of a new
one conducted by strangers, and made at her expense. Fortunately there is
reason to believe that this one will be found to have resulted in benefit
to New Zealand and its people, while it may prove of service to older and
larger countries. It is probable that the most widely known of New
Zealand's experiments is that which aimed at doing justice to employers
and employees alike by the substitution for the Industrial strike of a
Court of Arbitration, fairly constituted, on which both Workers and
Employers were equally represented. This law has been branded by the
supporters of the usual Strike policy with the name of "Compulsory
Arbitration," the object being to discredit it in the eyes of the workers,
as an infringement of their liberty. The title is unfair and misleading.
Unlike most laws, it never has been of universal application either to
Workers or Employers, but only to those among them that chose to form
themselves into industrial Unions, and to register those Unions as subject
to the provisions of the Statute. The purpose of the Statute was an appeal
to the common sense of the people, by offering them an alternative method
of settling disputes and securing that fair-play for both parties which
experience had shown could seldom be secured by the strike. The law, which
was first introduced in 1894, had gradually appealed both to workers and
employers, as worth trying, and before the close of the last century it
had rendered the country prosperous, and had attracted the attention of
thoughtful people in many other parts of the world to the "Country Without
Strikes." Efforts were made in several countries to introduce the
principle of the New Zealand Statute, but with very little success, as it
was generally opposed both by workers and employers:--the workers feeling
confident they could obtain greater concessions by the forceful methods of
the strike, and the employers suspecting that any Court of Arbitration
would be likely to give the workers more than, without arbitration, they
could compel the employers to surrender.

In the mean time the statutory substitute for the strike continued to
succeed in New Zealand. Nearly every class of town workers, and some in
the country, had formed Unions, and registered them under the arbitration
law. With a single trifling exception, that was speedily put an end to by
the punishment of the Union with the alternative of heavy fine or
imprisonment, the country was literally as well as nominally a country
without a strike. And it was something more than that: its prosperity
increased year by year, and its production of goods--agricultural,
pastoral, and manufactured--increased at a pace unequalled elsewhere. Yet
the prosperity was most apparent in its effect on the conditions of the
workers: under the successive awards of the arbitration court, wages had
steadily increased until they had reached a point as high as in similar
trades in America, while the cost of living was very little more than half
the rate in any town in the United States. To all intelligent observers
these facts were evident, and could not be concealed from the workers in
other countries, especially in Australia, as the nearest geographically to
New Zealand and commercially the most closely connected.

The effect, however, on the workers of Australia was not what might have
been expected. Attempts had been made by some of the State Legislatures to
introduce arbitration laws more or less like the New Zealand statute, but
with very partial success. From the first these laws were opposed by the
leaders of the Labor Unions, who naturally saw a menace to their influence
in the fact that they became subject to punishment if they attempted to
use their accustomed powers over their fellow unionists. The example of
New Zealand was lauded in the Australian Legislatures and newspapers, and
even in the courts, till at last a feeling of strong antagonism was
developed among the more advanced class of socialistic Labor men, and it
was decided by their leaders to undertake a campaign in the neighboring
Dominion against the system of settling industrial questions by courts,
and in favor of substituting the system of strikes, with their attendant
power and profit to the Labor leaders. The first steps taken were sending
men from Australia or England on lecturing tours through New Zealand, to
create dissatisfaction with the Arbitration Courts by representing them as
leaning to the side of the employers, and ignoring the claims of the
workers. When this had gone on for about a year, workers of various
classes were induced to cross from Australia, and join the Unions in New
Zealand, for the purpose of influencing their fellow unionists to
disloyalty towards the system under which they were registered. These men
were generally competent workers and clever agitators, and many of them
soon obtained prominence and official position in the Unions. As was
natural, a good many of these new-comers were miners--either for coal or
gold--and many of them joined the miners' union at the great gold mine
known as the Waihi, from which upwards of thirty million dollars worth of
gold had been dug, and which was still yielding between three and four
million dollars a year. There were nearly a thousand miners employed
there, and all of them were members of a Union that was duly registered
under the Arbitration statute.

There had been several questions in dispute between the miners and the
owners, and these had been referred to the Arbitration Court some time
before the arrival of the new Australian miners. The result, while it
favored the Union in some respects, favored the Company in others, and
this fact was used by the new-comers to convince the older hands that the
Court had been unfair, and that they could secure much better terms for
themselves if they would cease work, and so inflict immense loss by
permitting the lower levels of the mine to become flooded. After a few
months the Union decided to take advantage of the provision of the law
which enabled any registered Union to withdraw its registration at six
months' notice. When the time had expired, the Union repeated the demand
which had been refused by the Court, and on the refusal of the Company to
agree, a strike was at once declared, and the whole of the miners ceased
work. This had the effect, within a very short time, of rendering all the
deeper levels of the mine unworkable. Close to the mine was a prosperous
little town occupied chiefly by the miners and their families, most of the
houses being the property of the mining company, and the men continued to
occupy the houses while the strike was in progress. Other miners were
found who were ready to take their places, but the men in possession
refused to move out, and threatened with violence any miners that should
attempt to work the mine. The men who had been prepared to work, finding
this to be the position, withdrew. As there was no actual violence shown,
there seemed to be a difficulty in the way of any interference by the
Government: so several months passed, during which the mine lay idle while
the miners on strike continued to occupy the houses and pay the very
moderate rents demanded from employees of the company. This they were able
to do partly from their savings, partly from the sympathetic contributions
from Australia, and partly by some of the miners having scattered over the
country and got work on the farms, and throwing their earnings into the
common fund.

After repeated appeals by the mine-owners to the Government, an
arrangement was made that the Company should employ miners willing to
become members of a new Union registered under the Arbitration statute,
and that the Government should send a police force sufficient to protect
these in working the mine, and also to enforce the judgment of the local
court in dispossessing the occupants of the houses belonging to the
Company. An attempt was made by the strikers to defy this police force and
prevent the new Union from working the mine; but when most of the new
unionists had been sworn in as special constables, and a number of the
militant strikers had been arrested, the others saw that they could not
continue the struggle, and within a week or two abandoned the district,
giving place to the members of the arbitration Union in both the mine and

Thus the first strike organized by the "Federation of Labor" in New
Zealand resulted in a failure, but the miners thus defeated and driven
from the little town that had been their home, in many cases for a good
many years, were naturally embittered by their failure, and became an
element of mischief in other districts, and especially in the coal mines,
to which they turned when they found it hard to obtain employment in any
of the gold mines.

The Australian Federation of Labor and its branch in New Zealand fully
appreciated the fact that their first attempt to establish a system of
Unionism opposed to the one recognized by the law, having proved a
failure, it was necessary either to give up the attempt altogether or to
make it more deliberately and on a much wider scale. The method they
adopted was one that did credit to their foresight and determination. The
Australian Federation is, and has always been, highly socialistic in its
policy, and latterly its leaders have adopted and preached syndicalism, as
promising to give the workers the control of society. New Zealand, alone
among self-governing countries, having struck at the very root of their
policy by trying to substitute a statute and a Court for the will of the
associated workers, was a very tempting country for syndicalism. An island
country which, owing to climate and soil, was specially suited for the
production of all kinds of agricultural wealth beyond the needs of its own
people, must depend on free access to the ports of other countries. This,
it seemed plain, could be prevented by well managed syndicalism. It would
be only necessary to organize the seamen who worked the vessels that kept
the smaller harbors of such a country in touch with the larger ports at
which the ocean going ships loaded and unloaded; and to organize also the
stevedores at the larger ports. The bitterness of feeling that had
followed the destruction of the Waihi Union, and the loss to its members
not only of a good many months of good wages but of the homes they and
their families had occupied for years, was a valuable asset in such a
campaign. At first, of course, some of the working classes blamed the
agents of "The Federation of Labor" who were responsible for the
disastrous strike, but it was not difficult to turn attention from the
past failure of a single strike, to the certain success that must attend a
great syndical strike that would involve all the industries of the
country. Most, indeed nearly all, of the disappointed Waihi strikers were
ready to join with enthusiasm in carrying out the plans of The Federation,
and removed to the places where they could be most effective in preparing
the way for what they looked upon as a great revenge. Thus they either
joined the old Unions at the principal ports, especially Auckland and
Wellington, or formed new Unions, no longer registered under the
Arbitration statute, but openly affiliated to The Federation of Labor,
which had been established in New Zealand, but was really a branch of the
Australian Federation. The four principal ports of New Zealand, indeed the
only ports much frequented by the large export and import vessels, are
Auckland, Wellington, Lyttleton, and Dunedin, the two first named being in
the north island, and the other two in the south. Auckland is considerably
the largest city in The Dominion, containing at least 25,000 more
inhabitants than Wellington, which is not only the capital of the
Dominion, but also the great distributing centre for the South island and
the southern part of the North island, at the southern extremity of which
it is situated. The remarkable situation of Auckland, on a very narrow
isthmus about a hundred and eighty miles from the northern point of the
country, is no doubt largely responsible for the growth of the city, which
is the chief centre of the young manufactures of the Dominion, and the
largest port of export for almost all the country produces, except wool
and mutton, which are mainly raised in the South island. Thus it happens
that Auckland and Wellington are at present the chief shipping ports of
the Dominion, and it was to them that the Federation of Labor turned its
chief attention when its leaders had definitely decided to undertake the
campaign of syndicalism against the system of arbitration which had
prevailed for sixteen years.

There had already been formed Unions of Waterside Workers and Seamen at
each of these ports; but they were in all cases registered under the
arbitration law, and of course subject to its penalties against both
officials and members in cases of any breach of the statute. The
Federation's agents proceeded to collect the members of these unions who
were in any way dissatisfied with the existing awards of the Arbitration
Courts, and to form them into new Unions outside the statute. They had
little difficulty in persuading the men that the new Unions would be free
to act in many directions that were barred to the members of the old
Unions. A good many of the men were thus persuaded to resign their
membership in the existing Unions, and as they were very often the most
active members, they gradually persuaded others to leave with them. There
was nothing either in the law or custom of the ports to prevent unionists
and non-unionists working together on the wharves or the coasting vessels;
so within a comparatively short time the members of the new Federation
Unions were more numerous than those that clung to the older ones. When
this became the case, the officials of the new Unions approached the
shipping companies with proposals for an agreement between them and the
Federation Unions in some respects more favorable to the employers than
the arbitration award under which the older Unions were working, and in
this way gained a position which enabled them to undermine the old Unions,
till they either died out for want of members or withdrew their
registration, and at the end of their six months' notice merged their
Unions in those of The Federation. The Federation's plans had been so
carefully prepared that there was little or no suspicion on the part of
the employers or of the public generally as to the true meaning of the
movement. It was evident, of course, that it indicated a revolt against
the arbitration law, but as the new unions appeared ready to give the
employers rather better terms than the old ones, many reasons were found
by employers for defending what began to be called the "Free Unions." In
this way things had gone on at the shipping ports for about two years from
the failure of the gold miners' strike at Waihi, before anything happened
to open the eyes of the public to the real meaning of what The Federation
of Labor had been doing. In that time the new Unions at each of the
principal ports of the country had quietly obtained the entire control of
the hands at waterside and local shipping, as well as of the Carters
Unions. The time had arrived when the syndicalists believed themselves
able to compel the public to submit to any demands they might see fit to

The occasion finally arose, as might have been expected, at Wellington,
where the Federation of Labor had established its head-quarters. There was
no definite dispute between the employers and workers, but for a few weeks
there had been an uneasy feeling in relation to the Waterside Workers who,
it was said, were growing more lazy and slovenly in handling cargo on the
wharves and piers. A meeting had been called by The Federation to discuss
some grievances of the coal miners at Westport, from which most of the
coal landed in Wellington is brought. The meeting was called for the noon
dinner hour, and a number of the waterside workers engaged in discharging
cargo from a steamer about to sail, at once went to the meeting, and did
not return to work in the afternoon. The shipping company at once engaged
other men to finish their work, and when the men came back some hours
later, they found their places filled up. The new men belonged to the same
Union, but the men dispossessed demanded that the new ones should be
dismissed at once. When the company refused the demand, the men appealed
to the Council of the Federation, who at once called on the Waterside
Workers and Seamens Unions at Wellington to cease work. Within a few days
the position looked so serious that the Premier invited both parties to a
conference, at which he presided in person, in the hope of bringing about
an agreement to refer the matters in dispute to an arbitrator to be
mutually agreed upon. The officials of The Federation, however, said there
was nothing to submit to an arbitrator: they had made a demand, and unless
it was complied with by the shipping company and the Union of merchants at
Wellington who were in league with the Company in victimizing the men who
took part in the meeting in aid of the Coal-miners, the strike must go on.
The Merchants and Shipping Company's Unions pointed out that what had been
done was in direct opposition to the terms of the formal agreement signed
less than a year before, and they refused to have anything more to do with
the Federation on any terms. The conference thus ended in an open
declaration of war. The time had evidently come for the Federation of
Labor to make good the assertions so often made by its lecturers and
agitators, of its power to force the rest of the community to submission.
It would be difficult to imagine a more favorable position for carrying
such a policy into effect: New Zealand, it must be borne in mind, is a
country without an army. For some years past, it is true, a system of
military training for all her young men between eighteen and twenty-five
has been enforced by law, but except for training purposes, there is no
military force in the Dominion, either of regulars or militia; and it is
now forty-five years since the last company of British soldiers left its
shores. Law has been maintained, and order enforced, by a police force
under the control of the Government of the Dominion, and while the force
is undoubtedly a good and trustworthy one, its numbers have never been
large in proportion to the population. This year the entire force
throughout the country is very little more than 850, which includes
officers as well as men. It can hardly be wondered at that the officials
of The Federation of Labor were convinced that, if they could arrange a
general strike of the workers, the police force would be powerless to deal
with it. On the failure of the attempt of the Premier to bring about a
settlement between the parties by arbitration, the Federation proclaimed a
general strike of all Unions affiliated to themselves throughout the
country, and of all other Unions that were in sympathy with them in their
policy of giving united Labor the control of society. The order to cease
work was at once obeyed, as a matter of course, by all the Federation
Unions, which practically meant all the workers engaged on vessels
registered in the Dominion and trading on the coast, all workers on
wharves and piers, carters in the cities, and coal miners throughout the
country. The appeal for sympathetic assistance from Unions unconnected
with the Federation was largely successful in the chief centres, though it
was, of course, a direct defiance of the arbitration law under which they
were registered. It has since been discovered that in nearly every case it
was brought about by the unprincipled scheming of the secretaries,
assisted by a few of the officials, who called meetings, of which notice
was given only to a selected minority, and at which the question of
joining a sympathetic strike was settled by a large majority of those
present, but in fact in many cases a small minority of the whole
membership. The sympathetic strike of Arbitration Unions was mainly
confined to the cities, and Auckland, as the largest city, was the most
affected by it. In Auckland the members of practically every Union ceased
work, somewhere about ten thousand persons going on strike simultaneously.

The result during the first days of the strike seemed likely to confirm
the expectations of the Federation orators. Industry was practically dead.
At every port vessels lay at anchor, having been withdrawn from the
wharves before they were deserted by their crews, and the wharves were in
the possession of the Waterside strikers. The streets of the cities were
empty, and a large proportion of the stores were closed, partly owing to
want of business, and partly from fear of violence in case they kept open.
These first few days in both New Zealand and Australia were days of
triumph for the Federation leaders but the triumph was a short-lived one.
The Government of the Dominion did not interfere, indeed, but the public,
through their municipal authorities, did. The people of New Zealand have
throughout their history been accustomed to manage their own affairs, and
within four days of the declaration of war by the syndical Federation,
steps were taken to meet the emergency. At Auckland and Wellington it had
been evident from the first that the small police force available could
not safely attempt to cope with the main body of strikers, or do more than
prevent acts of aggressive violence to the citizens and their property.
The local authorities, however, had confidence in the general public, and
at Auckland, and afterwards at Wellington, the Mayor of the city appealed
to the public to come forward as volunteers to maintain law and order, by
acting as Special Constables. In both cities the appeal was responded to
readily, nearly two thousand young men coming forward at Auckland in
twenty-four hours, and upwards of a thousand at Wellington. These were at
once sworn in as special constables, and armed with serviceable batons,
while all the fire-arms and ammunition for sale in the city was taken
charge of and withdrawn from sale by the municipal authorities. In this
way the maintenance of order was fairly provided for, and the temporary
closing of all licensed hotels by order of the city magistrates removed
the danger of riot as the result of intemperance.

There had been some rioting in Wellington, though with little serious
injury, but there was nothing that could be called a riot in Auckland. The
Federation Unions waited, under the impression that time was on their
side, owing to the impossibility of doing anything or getting anything
done without the help of the associated workers. This had been the basis
of their scheme, but like all such schemes it failed to take into account
the instinct of self-preservation on the part of the people outside the
Unions. As long as the strike leaders could point to the fleet of vessels
lying idle in the harbor, the mills silent, and the street railroads
without a moving car, and almost deserted by carts, it was easy for them
to persuade their followers that complete victory was only a matter of
days, or at most of weeks; they had not remembered that there were others
besides themselves and their fellow townsmen interested in the question of
a paralyzed industry. The trade that has been making the people of New
Zealand increasingly rich during the last twenty years has been mainly
derived from the land. Small holdings and close settlement have been the
rule, and the rate of production has been increasingly rapid. The
exports--mainly the produce of the land--have grown in proportions quite
unknown in any other country, and the farmers knew that the prosperity of
the country, and most directly of all the workers on the land, depended on
the freedom and facilities for shipment of their ports. It was the workers
on the land, accordingly, that came to the rescue, and solved the
industrial problem. An offer was made by the President of The Farmers'
Cooperative Union to bring a sufficient number of the members into the
cities to work the shipping and to prevent any interruption of the work by
the men on strike. The offer was at once accepted by the municipal
authorities at Auckland and Wellington, and within two days fully eighteen
hundred mounted farmers rode into Auckland, and nearly a thousand into
Wellington, all prepared to carry on the work and protect the workers.
Their arrival practically settled the question. New Waterside Unions were
formed at every port, and registered under the provisions of the
Arbitration Statute; such of the country workers as were able to do so,
enrolled themselves as members of the new Unions; the wharves and water
fronts were taken possession of and guarded by the special constables
enlisted in the cities, while the streets were patrolled by parties of the
mounted volunteers. Within twenty-four hours of their arrival, some of the
vessels in harbor had been brought to the wharves, and the work of
unloading them was begun.

At first there were many threats of violent opposition on the part of the
strikers, and crowds assembled in the principal streets and in the
neighborhood of the wharves; but these were dispersed before they became
dangerous, by the mounted constables, and a proclamation having been
issued by the mayor calling attention to the fact that collections of
people that obstructed traffic in the streets were contrary to law, the
police and mounted constables cleared the streets, and forcibly arrested
any persons who attempted opposition. Within two or three days, at each of
the principal cities, new Unions of seamen and of carters had been formed
and registered under the arbitration law, and those members of the old
Federation Unions who were not enthusiastic, and began to see that the
assurances of success were not likely to be realized, began to resign and
apply for admission to the new Unions. After about two weeks the Council
of The Federation of Labor, recognizing the failure of the sympathetic
strike, invited the Unions that were not connected with them to declare
the strike at an end, and tried by confining the strike to their own
members, to maintain a solid front, which, with the help of the Australian
Federation both in money for the strikers and in refusing to handle any
goods either from or for New Zealand, they still hoped would carry them to
at least a compromise, if not to the victory they had expected. The hopes
of the Federation of Labor were not realized. Within a week or two a large
proportion of the members of their own Unions, seeing their places filled,
and their work being done, not by free labor, which they might hope to
deal with, but by new Unions, whose members would be entitled, under the
arbitration law, to preference and many other privileges, began to desert
and to seek admission to the Arbitration Unions that had taken their
place. For a time this was fiercely denied by the Federation officials,
but as the days went on, and business of every kind was resumed in the
cities, the groups of strikers at street corners and around the Federation
head-quarters dwindled away; the hotels were reopened, the shops and
stores were busy, the mills were at work, and even the coastal steamers
were manned and running, and the federationists were forced to admit that
they were hopelessly defeated. For a time they still hoped that the
Australian Boycott might save them from absolute disaster, and the Labor
Ministry of New South Wales tried to help the Federation by making an
appeal to the New Zealand Government to arrange an arbitration to settle
the dispute between The Wellington Waterside Workers and the merchants and
shipping companies. The absolute refusal of the New Zealand Government to
recognize The Federation of Labor, or to interfere with the new Unions
under the Arbitration Act that had taken their place, finally settled the
question, and completed the defeat of the strikers. The officials of the
Federation declared the strike at an end, and the Australian Federation
announced that the boycott was also at an end.

       *       *       *       *       *

At first sight it may seem that, after all, the experiment in syndicalism
was on a small scale, and that its lesson can hardly be of great value to
a country like America. A little consideration may correct such a
misapprehension. New Zealand was deliberately selected by the Syndicalists
as a test case, for two reasons. In the first place it was the only
country that had for years adopted a policy of justice according to law
for both workers and employers, and from the syndicalist's point of view
it was therefore the only country that seriously attacked their own policy
by showing that it was unnecessary. In the second place New Zealand was
the only country with a population of British origin that could be dealt
with practically by itself. With the aid of an Australian boycott it
seemed as if her people must be helpless in the hands of the Federation.
The result proved to be not only the defeat of the principle of lawless
syndicalism, but the destruction of the industrial association that
represented it in the country. No compromise was accepted, and except it
may be in name, no Union attached to the Federation of Labor remains at
work. The question, of course, suggests itself: What was the reason? Minor
reasons may be found, no doubt, to account for failure where success was
so confidently expected; but there can be little doubt that the real cause
is the policy pursued by the Legislature and people of New Zealand for the
last twenty years. Syndicalism, like all plans for the over turn, or
reform, as their advocates would perhaps prefer to call it, of existing
institutions, depends for success on the existence of wrongs by which part
of the people is impoverished, while another, and very small part, has
more than enough. The workers of our own race, at any rate, have enough
common-sense to understand, at least when they are not hysterically
excited, that imaginary wrongs are not a sufficient reason for great
sacrifices. New Zealand's legislation has not created an ideal society, it
is true; but for twenty years it has proceeded step by step in the
direction of righting the wrongs of the past, and giving opportunity to
that part of its people that needed it most, on the single condition that
they would use it, and respect the rights of others. To such a people,
increasing steadily, year by year, in all that makes for well-being, the
wild denunciations, and if possible wilder promises, of paid agitators can
have little attraction. It may be possible by careful generalship to stir
a small section of such a people to the hysterical excitement of an
industrial war, but the mass of the people would be certain to resent it,
and the movement will be doomed to a speedy collapse.

Other countries have been less enlightened and less fortunate than New
Zealand in their legislation, and perhaps still less fortunate in the
administration of the laws passed for the betterment of the masses of
their people. They have done little to convince the great majority that
they are aware of the wrongs that have been done that majority in the
supposed interest of the small class of the over rich. They have not
provided opportunity for those who hitherto have had none, nor have they
even provided a reasonable alternative for industrial warfare. Had they
done these things in the past, or were they even to begin honestly to
provide for them in the future, they might confidently expect that the
reign of industrial warfare, which exasperates their people, and retards
the prosperity of their nation, would be as easily and effectually
suppressed as the experiment of the Syndicalists has just been in New



Recent historians and economists have been showing that it was anything
but pure and unadulterated sense of brotherhood that prompted many of our
forefathers' fine speeches about opening the doors of America to the
down-trodden and oppressed of Europe. Emerson, fifty years ago, in his
essay on _Fate_ noted the current exploitation of the immigrant: "The
German and Irish millions, like the Negro, have a great deal of guano in
their destiny. They are ferried over the Atlantic, and carted over
America, to ditch and to drudge, to make corn cheap, and then to lie down
prematurely to make a spot of green grass on the prairie." Indeed it would
not be hard to show that there was always a real or potential social
surplus back of our national hospitality to the alien.

The process began long before our great nineteenth century era of
industrial expansion. Colonial policies with regard to the immigrant
varied according to latitude and longitude. Most of the New England
colonies viewed the foreigner with distrust as a menace to Puritan
theocracy. New York, Pennsylvania, and some of the Southern colonies were
much more hospitable, for economic reasons. That this hospitality
sometimes resembled that of the spider to the fly is evident from
observations of contemporary writers. That it included whites as well as
negroes in its ambiguous welcome is equally evident.

John Woolman writes in his _Journal_ (1741-2): "In a few months after I
came here my master bought several Scotchmen as servants, from on board a
vessel, and brought them to Mount Holly to sell." Isaac Weld, traveling in
the United States in the last decade of the eighteenth century, noted
methods of securing aliens in the town of York, Pennsylvania: "The
inhabitants of this town as well as those of Lancaster and the adjoining
country consist principally of Dutch and German immigrants and their
descendants. Great numbers of these people emigrate to America every year
and the importation of them forms a very considerable branch of commerce.
They are for the most part brought from the Hanse towns and Rotterdam. The
vessels sail thither from America laden with different kinds of produce
and the masters of them on arriving there entice as many of these people
on board as they can persuade to leave their native country, without
demanding any money for their passages. When the vessel arrives in America
an advertisement is put into the paper mentioning the different kinds of
people on board whether smiths, tailors, carpenters, laborers, or the like
and the people that are in want of such men flock down to the vessel.
These poor Germans are then sold to the highest bidder and the captain of
the vessel or the ship holder puts the money into his pocket."

These may be, it is true, extreme cases of the economic motive for
immigration. But they are quite in line with eighteenth century
Mercantilist economic philosophy. Josiah Tucker, for example, in his
_Essay on Trade_, 1753, urges the encouragement of immigration from
France, and cites the value of Huguenot refugees. "Great was the outcry
against them at their first coming. Poor England would be ruined!
Foreigners encouraged! And our own people starving! This was the popular
cry of the times. But the looms in Spittle-Fields, and the shops on
Ludgate-Hill have at last sufficiently taught us another lesson ... these
_Hugonots_ have ... partly got, and partly saved, in the space of fifty
years, a balance in our favour of, at least, fifty millions sterling....
And as England and France are rivals to each other, and competitors in
almost all branches of commerce, every single manufacturer so coming over,
would be our gain, and a double loss to France."

The obverse side of the case appears in British hindrances to the free
emigration of artisans during the eighteenth and early nineteenth
centuries. Laws forbade any British subject who had been employed in the
manufacture of wool, cotton, iron, brass, steel, or any other metal, of
clocks, watches, etc., or who might come under the general denomination of
artificer or manufacturer, to leave his own country for the purpose of
residing in a foreign country out of the dominion of His Britannic
Majesty. Recall the difficulty early American manufacturers encountered in
introducing new English improvements in cotton manufacture; a virtual
embargo was laid upon the migration of either men or machinery. Recall,
too, an expression of American resentment in our Declaration of
Independence at this English attitude: "He has endeavored to prevent the
population of these states; for that purpose, obstructing the laws for
naturalization of foreigners, refusing to pass others to encourage
migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of

On the whole, the economic motive seems to have been uppermost in the
minds of both those who fostered and those who opposed foreign immigration
into the United States, up to, say, 1870. Likewise in perhaps more than
ninety-nine of every hundred cases the economic motive holds in the mind
of the present day immigrant, or his protagonist. Escape from political
tyranny or religious persecution, at least since the revolutionary period
of 1848, has operated only as a secondary motive. The industrial impulse
is all the more striking in the so-called "new immigration" from the
Mediterranean and South-Eastern Europe. The temporary migrant laborer, the
"bird of passage," roams about seeking his fortunes in much the same
spirit that certain Middle Age Knights or Crusades camp followers sought
theirs. This is in no way to his discredit. It is simply a fact that we
are to reckon with when called upon to work out a satisfactory immigration
policy. At least its recognition would eliminate a good deal of wordy
sentimentality from discussions of the immigration problem.

Professor Fairchild discovered that three things attract the Greek
immigrant. First and foremost, financial opportunities. Second, corollary
to the first, citizenship papers which will enable him to return to
Turkey, there to carry on business under the greater protection which such
citizenship confers. There is a hint here to the effect that mere
naturalization does not mean assimilation and permanent acceptance of the
status and responsibilities of American citizenship. Third, enjoyment of
certain more or less factitious "comforts of civilization."

But the Greeks are by no means untypical. The conclusion of the
Immigration Commission as to the causes of the new immigration is that
while "social conditions affect the situation in some countries, the
present immigration from Europe to the United States is in the largest
measure due to economic causes. It should be stated, however, that
emigration from Europe is not now an absolute economic necessity, and as a
rule those who emigrate to the United States are impelled by a desire for
betterment rather than by the necessity of escaping intolerable
conditions. This fact should largely modify the natural incentive to treat
the immigration movement from the standpoint of sentiment, and permit its
consideration primarily as an economic problem. In other words, the
economic and social welfare of the United States should now ordinarily be
the determining factor in the immigration policy of the Government."

This delimitation of the immigration problem to its economic aspects led
the Immigration Commission to recommend a somewhat restrictionist policy.
That they were not without warrant in so delimiting it is evident from the
utterances of such ardent opponents of restriction as Dr. Peter Roberts
and Max J. Kohler. The latter, writing in the _American Economic Review_
(March, 1912) said: "In fact, the immigrant laborer is indispensable to
our economic progress today, and we can rely upon no one else to build our
houses, railroads and subways, and mine our ores for us." Dr. Roberts'
plea is almost identical.

What a glaring misconception of the whole economic and social problem is
here involved will appear if we add a clause or two to Mr. Kohler's
sentence. He should have said: "We can rely upon no one else to build our
houses, railroads and subways, and mine our ores for us _at $455 a year;
for workers of native birth but of foreign fathers would cost us $566, and
native born White Americans $666 a year_." (See Abstracts of Rep. of
Immigr. Comm. vol. i., pp. 405-8.) These are the facts. This is the social
situation as it should be stated if a candid discussion of the problem is

Now what are the economic arguments for restricting somewhat the tide of
immigration? Several studies of standards of living among American
workingmen within the past ten years have shown that a large proportion of
American wage earners fall below a minimum efficiency standard. Studies of
American wages indicate that only a little over ten per cent of American
wage earners receive enough to maintain an average family in full social
efficiency. The average daily wage for the year ranges from $1.50 to $2.
One-half of all American wage earners get less than $600 a year;
three-quarters less than $750; only one-tenth more than $1,000.

Take in connection with these wage figures the statistics for
unemployment. The proportion of idleness to work ranges from one-third in
mining industries to one-fifth in other industries. In Massachusetts,
1908, manufacturers were unemployed twelve per cent of the working time.
Professor Streightoff estimated three years ago that the average annual
loss in this country through unemployment is 1,000,000 years of working
time. Perhaps one-tenth of working time might be taken as a very
conservative general average loss. But the worst feature of the whole
problem is that, in certain industries at least, the tendency to seasonal
unemployment is increasing. Ex-Commissioner Neill in his report on the
Lawrence strike said: "... it is a fact that the tendency in many lines of
industry, including textiles, is to become more and more seasonal and to
build to meet maximum demands and competitive trade conditions more
effectively. This necessarily brings it about that a large number of
employes are required for the industry during its period of maximum
activity who are accordingly of necessity left idle during the period of
slackness." (Senate Document 870, 62d Cong., 2d sess., 1912.)

If we recall still further that the casual laborer, who suffers most from
seasonal unemployment, is the chief stumbling block in the way to a
solution of the problem of poverty; that he furnishes the human power in
"sweated trades:" that immigrants form the majority of unskilled and
sweated laborers; if we remember that there is not a shred of evidence
(except the well-meant enthusiasm of the protagonists of the immigrant) to
show that immigration has "forced-up" the American laborer and his
standard of living, instead of displacing him downward; if we remember
that probably 10,000,000 of our people are in poverty, and that though the
immigrant may not seek charity in any larger proportions than the poor of
native stock, yet he does contribute heavily to our burden of relief for
dependents and defectives: we are justified in assuming that an analysis
of the causes of poverty confirms the evidence from studies of wages and
standards of living as to the depressing effect of the new immigration, in
particular, upon working conditions for the American laborer.

Consider, too, the question of "social surplus." Several American
economists, among them Professors Hollander, Patten and Devine, agree that
we are creating annually in the United States a substantial social
surplus. But it is evident from the figures of wages and standards of
living quoted above that the American laborer is not participating as he
might expect to participate in this economic advantage. Three factors
conspire against him. First, we have yet no adequate machinery for
determining exactly what the surplus is, or how to distribute it
equitably. Mr. Babson with his "composite statistical charts" has made a
beginning in the mathematical determination of prosperity; but it is only
a beginning. Second, organized labor is not yet sufficiently organized nor
sufficiently self-conscious to perceive and demand its opportunity for a
larger share. The significant point here is that recent immigration has
hampered and hindered the development of labor organizations, and thus
indirectly held back the normal tendency of wages to rise. Third,
inadequate education, particularly economic and social education. The
adult illiterate constitutes a tremendous educational problem. Over 35 per
cent of the "new immigration" of 1913 was illiterate, and this new
immigration included over two-thirds of the total. Ignorance prevents the
laborer from demanding the very education that would give him a better
place in the economic system; it hinders the play of intelligent
self-interest; and it actually prevents effective labor-organization,
which is one of the surest means of labor-education. Jenks and Lauck,
after experience with the Immigration Commission, concluded that "the fact
that recent immigrants are usually of non-English speaking races, and
their high degree of illiteracy, have made their absorption by the labor
organizations very slow and expensive. In many cases, too, the conscious
policy of the employers of mixing the races in different departments and
divisions of labor, in order, by a diversity of tongues, to prevent
concerted action on the part of employes, has made unionization of the
immigrant almost impossible."

For these reasons, and others, we are driven to the conclusion that future
policies of immigration must be based on sound principles of social
welfare and social economy, and not upon the economic advantage of certain
special industries. Whether we want the brawn of the immigrant must be
determined by what it will contribute to the general social surplus, and
not by what it adds to A's railroads or B's iron mines.

We are told that the three classes of our population demanding
unrestricted immigration are large employers of unskilled labor,
transportation companies, and revolutionary anarchists. Since this is by
definition an economic and not a philosophical question, we may neglect
the third class. To the other two classes should be directed certain brief
tests of economic good faith. Take at its face value their claim that
European brawn by the ship-load is indispensable to American industry. It
is becoming an accepted maxim that industry should bear its own charges,
should pay its own way. American industry has long fought the
contract-labor exclusion feature in current immigration law. Suppose we
frankly admit that it is much better for the immigrant to come over here
to a definite job than to wander about for weeks after he arrives, a prey
to immigrant banks, fake employment agents, and other sharks. Suppose,
accordingly, we repeal the laws against contract-labor. Let the employer
contract for as many foreign laborers as he likes or says he needs. But
make the contractor liable for support and deportation costs if the
laborers become public charges. Also require him to assume the cost of
unemployment insurance. Exact a bond for the faithful performance of these
terms, guaranteed in somewhat the same way that National Banks are
safeguarded. Immigration authorities now commonly require a bond from the
relatives of admitted aliens who seem likely to become public charges, but
who are allowed to enter with the benefit of the doubt. Customs and
revenue rules admit dutiable goods in bond. Hence the principle of the
bond is perfectly familiar, and its application to contract-immigrants
would be in no sense an untried or dangerous experiment. It would
establish no new precedent: for precedents, and successful ones, are
already established, accepted and approved. It would be understood that
all admissions of aliens can be only provisional, with no time limit on
deportation. It would be understood further--and the plan would work
automatically if the contractor were made such a deeply interested
party--that intending immigrants must be rigidly inspected, that they be
required to produce consular certificates of clean police record, freedom
from chronic disease, insanity, etc.

The result of such a scheme would probably cut away entirely
contract-labor; for it would not longer pay. But this does not mean
barring the gate to all foreign labor. As an aid to the employer and to
our own native workingman, we must, sooner or later, and the sooner the
better, establish a chain of labor bureaus throughout the Union. The
system must be placed under Federal direction, largely because the
Department of Labor would be charged, _ex officio_, with ascertaining the
"true demand" for immigrant labor, and it could only accomplish this end
effectively through such an employment clearing system. This true demand
would, of course, be based not only upon mere numerical excess of calls
for labor over demands for jobs, but would also take into account the
nature of the work, working conditions, and above all the prevailing level
of wages. According to this true demand the Department would adjust a
sliding scale of admissions of immigrant laborers.

Much might be said in favor of an absolute embargo upon all immigration
until such a body as the Industrial Relations Commission has time to make
an authoritative economic survey of the whole country, or until the
Unemployment Research Commission recently called for by Miss Kellor could
make the three years' study contemplated by her as the only way out of the
unemployment morass. Twenty years ago men of the type of General Walker
frankly urged that the immigration gates be closed for a flat period of
ten years or so. But the sliding scale plan contemplates no such radical
step. Indeed it is radical in no sense whatever. The proposed immigration
act now before Congress (The Burnett Bill, H.R. 6060) paves the way for
it, and provides a working principle, which apparently is accepted on all
sides. Section 3 includes this clause: "That skilled labor, if otherwise
admissible, may be imported if labor of like kind unemployed can not be
found in this country, and the question of the necessity of importing such
skilled labor in any particular instance may be determined by the
Secretary of Labor...." A really workable test for immigration, superior
by far to the literacy test or any other so far suggested, might easily be
developed by simply enlarging the scope of this clause, making it include
unskilled as well as skilled labor. No machinery other than that
contemplated by the present act would be required.

The immigration problem can never be satisfactorily handled until we fix
upon some such means of determining just what the economic need is. There
is no danger of hindering legitimate industrial expansion in times of
sudden business prosperity: for the transportation companies may be safely
trusted to supply in three or four weeks aliens enough to fill all the
gaps in the industrial army. Neither would injustice be done to the
immigrant himself. On the contrary, he would be assured of a job and
respectful consideration when he arrived. The "dago" or the "bohunk" would
acquire a new dignity and a more enviable status than he now occupies. The
selective process thus involved would much improve the quality of the
immigrant admitted, and would incidentally render assimilation of the
foreigner all the easier.

The precise details of selection, and the machinery, are mere matters of
detail. But the consular service, as long ago suggested by Catlin,
Schuyler and others, seems to offer the proper base of operations. We have
already recommended charging consuls with viseing certificates from
police, medical, and poor-relief authorities. We should further require
that declarations of intention to migrate be published (somewhat as
marriage banns are published) at local administrative centers
(arrondissement, Bezirk, etc.) and at United States consular offices; the
consular declaration should be obligatory; perhaps the other might be
optional, though in all probability foreign governments would cooeperate in
demanding it. These validated declarations of intention should be filed in
the consular offices. When notice comes from the United States Department
of Labor that so many laborers will be admitted from such and such
district, the declarations are to be taken up in the order of their
filing, and the proper number of persons certified for admission. The
apportionment of admissions from each country might be calculated on a
basis of its population, also upon the nature of the employment offered,
and upon the desirability of the alien himself, his general
assimilability, his willingness to become naturalized, to adopt the
English language and the American standard of living among efficient
workers, etc.,--all as proved by past experience with his countrymen. This
plan, in so far as it provides for a sliding scale of admissions, is in
line with that proposed by Professor Gulick. He advocates making all
nations eligible for admission and citizenship, but would admit them only
in proportion as they can be readily assimilated. This would admit
annually, say, five per cent of those already naturalized, with their
American children. The principle here seems to be that we can assimilate
from any land in, and only in, proportion to the number already
assimilated from that land. But the difficulty of applying such a test
lies in the complexity of the assimilative process. No measure yet exists
for assimilation. Anthropologists are convinced that various strains in
the populations, for example of France, or Great Britain, which have been
dwelling together for centuries, are not by any means assimilated. Mere
naturalization is not a sufficient test of assimilation; it is only the
expression of a desire to be assimilated; and it may only be a device for
the promotion of business success here or in foreign parts, as we have
already indicated in the case of the Greeks. Hence in working out the
basis of a sound immigration policy, it would seem more practicable to
consider first the question of economic utilization rather than
assimilation. This, of course, does not exclude from the Secretary of
Labor's judgment the category of assimilability as one of the factors in
determining the apportionment of admissions.

It will appear that the plan outlined above limits immigration policy to
purely national and economic considerations. But it is, as matters now
stand, a national question. And it must remain so for some time to come,
even if we are reproached with a narrow Mercantilist economics. The
admission of aliens is not yet a fundamental international _right_, or
_duty_; it is only an example of _comity_ within the family of nations.
And the matter must rest in this state of limbo until we develop some
institution or method of registering our sentiments of internationalism,
and especially of determining _international surplus_. As it is idle to
talk or dream of abolishing poverty until at least the concept of social
or national surplus is pretty clearly fixed and its realization either
actually at hand or fairly imminent, just so is it vain to expect an
international adjustment of the immigration problem on economic grounds
until the existence of an international surplus is demonstrated, and the
methods of apportioning it worked out.

How soon we may expect these things it is not our province to predict. It
is too early to pass final judgment on Professor Patten's dictum that
inter-racial cooeperation is impossible without integration, and that races
must therefore stand in hostile relations or finally unite. But it is
perfectly apparent that we have a long way to travel before the path to
integration is cleared. Such assemblages as the First Universal Races
Congress which met in London in 1911 can do much to prepare the way. But
it must not be forgotten that the German representative at that Congress
pleaded for the maintenance of strict racial and national boundaries, and
summed up his plea in the rather ominous sentence: "The brotherhood of man
is a good thing, but the struggle for life is a far better one." Meanwhile
we need not anticipate serious international difficulties in the way of
the sliding-scale plan; for foreign governments are watching the tide of
immigration with mixed feelings. They welcome the two or three hundred
million dollars sent home annually by alien residents in the United
States. But they also resent the dislocations of industry, the fallow
fields, the dodging of military service, and the disturbance of the level
of prices which such wholesale emigrations inflict upon the mother

Since the protagonists of unrestricted immigration have taken largely an
economic line of argument, it seemed desirable to accept their terms, and
meet them on their own ground. But I should not wish to be misunderstood
as limiting the immigration question to its economic phases. When we have
said that the _latifondisti_ of Southern Italy are in despair at the
scarcity of laborers to work their lands at starvation wages, and that the
railway builders and mine operators of America are equally anxious to have
those selfsame South Italian laborers for their own exploitive
enterprises, we have told a bare half of the tale. There remain all those
cultural, educational, political, religious and domestic variations and
adjustments which make up the general problem of assimilability of the
alien and of the strength of our own national digestion. America had a
giant's undiscriminating appetite in the great days of expansion from 1850
to 1890. But there are many signs, economic and other, that we can no
longer play Gargantua and continue a healthy nation. An unwise engineer
sometimes over-stokes his boilers, and courts disaster. Is it not equally
possible that national welfare may suffer from an over-dose of human fuel
in our industry?


"The next great task of preventive medicine is the inauguration of
universal periodic medical examinations as an indispensable means for the
control of all diseases, whether arising from injurious personal habits,
from congenital or constitutional weakness, or from social and vocational
conditions." That this declaration by the Commissioner of Health of the
city of New York is not the mere expression of an individual opinion,
there is abundant evidence. And no one who has watched the growth of other
movements towards such regulation of life as only a few years ago would
have seemed wholly outside the domain of practical probability can doubt
that the "Life Extension" movement, as thus outlined, will rapidly grow
into prominence. Nor is there much room for doubt that, whether explicitly
contemplated at present or not, compulsion as well as universality is
tacitly implied in the movement.

I say that the movement is sure to grow into prominence, that it is a
thing which must be seriously reckoned with; I do not say that it will
march straight on to victory, or even that it is sure to prevail in the
end. It is instructive, in this regard, to hark back to a recent
experience in a more special, but yet an extremely important, domain.
Several years ago a report on university efficiency was issued under the
auspices--though, it should be added, without the official endorsement--of
the Carnegie Foundation. The central feature of this report lay in its
advocacy of the application to universities of those principles of system
and of standardization which have been successfully applied on a large
scale to the promotion of industrial efficiency, and are generally
referred to by the catch-word, "scientific management." In spite of the
merits of the report in certain matters of detail, and of the high
standing of the expert who wrote it in his own department of industrial
engineering, the report evoked an almost universal chorus of contemptuous
rejection not only in university circles, but also from those organs of
public opinion which have any claim to be regarded as enlightened judges
in questions of education and culture. The thing seemed to have been
laughed out of court. And yet it turned out that a year or two afterwards
a full-fledged scheme for carrying out some of the crudest and most
objectionable features of this "efficiency" program was presented to the
professors of Harvard University, apparently with the expectation that
they would fall in with its requirements without hesitation or protest.
For some days there seemed to be real danger that this would actually
happen. It turned out to be a false alarm; the faculty of the foremost of
American universities were guilty of no such supineness. The project was
ignominiously shelved, with some sort of explanation that the springing of
it on the professors was due to an error or misunderstanding. But that the
attempt should have been made, and in a manner that argued so total a lack
of any sense of its grossness and crudity, is a significant warning of the
extent to which the notions underlying it have fastened upon the general

The story of the eugenics movement in this country affords a striking
illustration at once of the almost startling rapidity with which
innovating ideas as to the regulation of life gain acceptance, and of the
fact that this rapidity is by no means conclusive proof that their
progress will be continuous. The one thing clear is that there is a large,
active, and influential element in the population that is extremely
hospitable to such ideas, and manifests a naive, an almost childish,
readiness to put them into immediate execution. Since, in the nature of
things, this element is lively and active--since, too, what is novel and
in motion is more interesting than what is old and at rest--at first there
is almost sure to be produced a deceptive appearance that the new thing is
sweeping everything before it. Just now there is evidently a lull in the
onward march of legislative eugenics. This is sufficient proof of the
conservatism of the people as a whole; we may be quite sure that anything
beyond a very restricted application of eugenical notions will take a long
time to get itself established in our laws or even in our customs.
Nevertheless, it would be a great mistake to suppose that even the more
extreme forms of eugenical doctrine are not forces to be reckoned with as
affecting practical possibilities of a not distant future. Though no
results may appear on the surface, the leaven is working. It is consonant
with tendencies which in so many directions are becoming more and more
dominant. So long as those tendencies continue in anything like their
present strength, there can be little doubt that the idea of control in
the direction of eugenics, like that of the regulation of human life in
other fundamental respects, will continue to make headway, and may at any
time become one of the central issues of the day.

To adduce prohibition as an illustration of this same character in the
thought and the tendencies of our immediate time may seem like forcing the
point. It is true, it may be said, that there has been within the past few
years a rapid spread of prohibition in almost every part of the country;
but the thing itself is sixty years old, has had its periods of advance
and recession, and is now, in the fullness of time, reaping the fruits of
two generations of agitation, investigation, and education. But to say
this is to overlook the distinctive feature of the present situation
regarding prohibition in the United States. A Constitutional amendment
providing for the complete prohibition of the sale of liquor throughout
the Union is pending in Congress. A year ago--probably six months
ago--there was hardly a human being in the United States, other than those
in the councils of the Anti-saloon League, who had so much as thought of
national prohibition as a question of present-day practical politics.
Suddenly it is announced that there is a distinct possibility of a
prohibition amendment being passed by Congress in the near future; and one
of the foremost representatives of the Anti-saloon League states, and with
good show of reason, that if the amendment be passed by Congress, its
ratification by the Legislatures of three fourths of the States can be
only a matter of time. What the probabilities actually are, I do not
undertake to say; neither am I concerned at this moment with the merits of
the issue itself. What I _am_ concerned with is the simple fact that in
this situation, brought upon the country with dramatic suddenness, nobody
seems to have been in the least startled, or so much as disturbed in his
equanimity. There will of course be a great struggle over the question,
sooner or later. But neither in Congress nor in the press has there as yet
been any sign of such an assertion of the claims of personal liberty as,
at any time previous to the past ten years, would have been sure to be
made in such a situation. This collective silence, on an issue affecting
so intimately the lives, the habits, the traditions of millions of people,
is, in my judgment, by far the most impressive proof of the degree in
which the public mind has grown accustomed to the inroads of regulation
upon the domain of individuality.

       *       *       *       *       *

A number of years ago, when the mathematical concept of space of more than
three dimensions was attracting great popular interest, an ingenious
writer undertook to make the idea intelligible to "the general" by
picturing the state of mind in regard to three dimensions of a race of
beings whose life and whose sensual experience was limited to space of two
dimensions. He gave his little book the title "Flatland," and it gained
wide attention. In his Commencement address at Columbia last year,
President Butler had the happy thought of applying the term in the
characterization of certain aspects of the intellectual and political life
of our time. He was speaking particularly of that absorption in the
immediate problems of the day which makes almost impossible a true study
and contemplation of the lasting concerns of mankind as embodied in
history and literature. "Every ruling tendency," he said, "is to make life
a Flatland, an affair of two dimensions, with no depth, no background, no
permanent root." That this is a literal truth probably neither Dr. Butler
nor anyone else would contend; but it hits off with great force and with
substantial accuracy the prevailing character of thought in the circles
most active and most influential in almost every department of human
activity at the present time. And the tendency which President Butler
describes as arising out of our absorption in current problems is still
more manifest in the spirit of our actual dealings with those problems
themselves. On every hand we find a surprising readiness to accept views
which explicitly tend to take out of life that which gives it depth and
significance and richness. Each one of the four movements we have
mentioned affords an illustration of this: in following any one of them we
travel straight toward Flatland. They differ very much, one from another;
they have very different degrees and kinds of justification; it may be
difficult in the case of some of them to strike a balance between the gain
and the loss. The remarkable thing--the ominous thing, if we are to
suppose that the present tone of thought will long persist--is that the
loss involved in the flattening of life, as such, apparently almost wholly
fails to get consideration. I say apparently, because there is, no doubt,
a deep and strong undercurrent of opposition which, sooner or later, will
manifest itself; in speaking of "ruling tendencies" we are apt to mean
merely the tendencies that are most in evidence. But after all, it is to
these that criticism of contemporary life and thought must, of necessity,
be chiefly directed.

As I have already indicated, the attack on individuality and personal
dignity in the universities was met in a spirit that is highly gratifying,
and which is quite out of keeping with the tendency that I am discussing
and deploring. Yet it is doubtful whether, outside the circle of the
universities themselves, and of those individuals who are thoroughly
imbued with the university spirit, there is any true realization of what
it is that constituted the head and front of that offending. If some
bureau of research were to present a formidable array of figures showing
that the "output" of professorial work could be increased by so and so
many per cent. through the adoption of some definitely formulated system
of "scientific management," it is by no means certain that the scheme
would not receive powerful support in the highest quarters of efficiency
propaganda. We should be told just how many millions of dollars a year we
are spending on university education, and just how many of these millions
go needlessly to waste. Even the opponents of the "reform" would probably
find themselves compelled to use as their most powerful argument this and
that example of great practical results which have flowed from letting men
of genius go their own way. It would be pointed out that many an
investigation which, to the authorities of the time, appeared wholly
unpromising, turned out to be of cardinal value. We should be warned that
what we gain in a thousand cases through time-clock and card-catalogue
methods, might be lost ten times over through the shackling of the
initiative of a single man of unrecognized genius. And all this would be
very much to the purpose; but it is not upon any such special pleading
that the case ought to be made to rest. The loss that would be suffered
transcends all these concrete and definable instances of it. It would be
pervasive, fundamental, immeasurable. Grievous as might be the injury
caused by the prevention of specific achievements of exceptional
importance, this would be as nothing in comparison with the intellectual
and spiritual loss entailed by the lowering of the human level, the
devitalizing of the intellectual atmosphere, which must inevitably follow
upon the application of factory methods to university life.

       *       *       *       *       *

The case of the eugenics propaganda is far more complex. In its origin,
and doubtless in some of its present manifestations, it may lay claim to
being directed toward aims which are particularly concerned with the
higher interests of life. The author of "Hereditary Genius" certainly
could not be accused of indifference to the part played in the past, or to
be played in the future, by exceptional minds and characters; nor is it
necessary to charge any of the present promoters of the propaganda with
explicit failure to appreciate the importance of such minds and
characters. The criticism is often made, from this standpoint, that the
hard-and-fast rules which the eugenists propose would, in point of fact,
have put under the ban some of the most illustrious names in the annals of
mankind--men whose genius was accompanied with some of the very traits
which they hold should most positively be prevented from appearing. But,
however weighty this objection to the methods of eugenics may be, it is to
be looked upon rather as an item on the debit side of the reckoning than
as marking an ingrained defect, a fault at the very heart of the matter.
The eugenists may well challenge those who urge merely this kind of
objection to show that the losses thus pointed out are great enough to
offset the gains, in the very same direction, which they regard their
program as promising. Whatever the truth of the matter may be, they can at
least set up the contention that, as a mere affair of quantity, genius
will do better under their system than without it.

What brings the eugenics movement into the Flatland category is not its
attitude toward the question of genius, or perhaps even of singularity,
but its attitude toward the life of mankind as a whole--if indeed it can
be said to have any attitude toward the life of mankind as a whole. The
profound elements of that life seem not to come at all within the range of
its contemplation. Of course this does not apply to everything that comes
from the eugenics camp, nor to every person that calls himself a eugenist.
But on the other hand it is by no means only of the crude projects of
half-educated reformers, or the outgivings of the prophets of our popular
magazines, that it _is_ true. The agitation has derived much of its
impetus, directly or indirectly, from the teachings of men of high
scientific eminence who have attacked the question without any apparent
realization of its deeper bearings on the whole character of human life.
This influence often comes in the shape of exhortations, or suggestions,
addressed to the public at a time when attention is centered upon some
conspicuous crime or some particular phase of evil in the community;
sweeping and radical regulation of the right of parenthood being urged as
necessary for the prevention of all such distressing phenomena. Thus,
after the attempted assassination of Mayor Gaynor, there was much talk of
a "national campaign for mental hygiene," which should have the effect of
"preventing Czolgoszes and Schranks." Its program was thus indicated by
one of the foremost professors of medicine in the United States:

    Provision must be made for the birth of children whose brains
    shall, so far as possible, be innately of good quality; this means
    the denial of the privilege of parenthood to those likely to
    transmit bad nervous systems to their offsprings.

What the carrying out of such a programme would mean to mankind at large,
how profoundly it would modify those ideas about life, those standards of
human dignity and human rights, which are so fundamental and so pervasive
that they are taken for granted without express thought in every act and
every feeling of all normal men and women--this does not seem ever to
trouble the mind of the devotee of universal regulation. He sees the
possibility of effecting a certain definite and measurable improvement;
that the means by which this is accomplished must fatally impair those
elemental conceptions of human life whose value transcends all
measurement, he has not the insight or the imagination to recognize. The
distinctions of social class, of wealth, of public honor, leave untouched
the equality of men in the fundamentals of human dignity. They do not go
to the vitals of self-respect; they do not interfere with a man's sense of
what is due to him, and what is due from him, in the primary relations of
life. If nature has been unkind to him in his physical or mental
endowments, he does not therefore feel in the least disqualified, as
regards his family, his friends, his neighbors, the stranger with whom he
chances to come into contact, from receiving the same kind of
consideration, in the essentials of human intercourse, that is accorded to
those who are more fortunate; nor does he feel in any respect absolved
from the duty of playing the full part of a man. Under the regime of
medical classification--and the "mental hygiene" programme can mean
nothing less than that--all this would disappear. Some men would be men,
others would be something less. It is true that, so far as regards the
imbecile, the insane, and the criminal, such a state of things obtains as
it is; but this stands wholly apart from the general life of the race, and
has no influence whatever on the habitual feelings and experiences of
human beings. The normal life of mankind is shot through and through with
the idea that a man's a man; all that is highest in feeling and conduct is
closely bound up with it. Lessen its sway over our feelings and thoughts
and instincts, and how much benefit in the shape of "preventing Czolgoszes
and Schranks" would be required to compensate for the loss in nobleness,
in depth, which human life would suffer?

       *       *       *       *       *

The prohibition movement belongs, in the main, to a wholly different order
of things. The fight against the evils of drink, as it has been carried on
for a century or more, has been animated by a moral fervor which classes
it rather with the fight against slavery, or with the great revivals of
religion, than with those movements which owe their origin to a
calculating and cold-blooded perfectionism. Its leaders have been fired
with the ardor of a war directed against a devastating monster, to whose
ravages was to be ascribed a large part of the misery and wickedness that
afflict mankind. It is true that the economic and physiological aspects of
the drink question were not ignored; the total-abstinence men were glad
enough to have this second string to their bow. But the real fight was not
against alcohol as one of many things concerning which the habits of men
are more or less unwise; it was a fight against the Demon Rum, the ally of
all the powers of darkness. The plea of the moderate drinker was rejected
with scorn, not because there was any objection to moderate drinking in
itself, but because total abstinence was the only true preventive of
drunkenness, and drunkenness must be stamped out if mankind was to be
saved. The moderate drinker was censured not because he was wasting his
money, or failing to "conserve his efficiency," but because for the sake
of a trivial self-indulgence he was giving countenance to a practice which
was consigning millions of his fellow men to wretchedness in this world
and to everlasting damnation in the next.

Now this remarkable thing about the present extraordinary manifestation of
growth and strength in the prohibition movement is that it is not in the
least due to a strengthening of this sentiment. On the contrary, it is
safe to say that feeling about drunkenness, about the drink evil in the
sense in which it was understood a generation ago, is far less intense
than it was then. The prohibition movement in its present stage is not the
old prohibition movement advancing to triumph through the onward march of
its proselyting zeal; of true prohibitionist zealots the number is
probably less, in proportion to the population, than it was forty years
ago. Its great accession of strength has come from the growth of that
order of ideas which is common to all the "efficiency" movements of the
time. And that growth helps it in two ways. On the one hand, to the little
army of crusaders against the Demon Rum there has come the accession of a
host of men who are not thinking about demons at all, but who calmly hold
that the world would be better off without drinking, and that this is an
all-sufficient reason for prohibiting it. And on the other hand, millions
of persons who, in former days would have cried out against this way of
improving the world--against the impairment of personal liberty and the
sacrifice of social enjoyment and social variety--have no longer the
courage of their convictions. The temper of the time is unfavorable to the
assertion of the value of things so incapable of numerical measurement.
Against the heavy battalions led by the statisticians, and the
experimental psychologists, and the efficiency experts, what chance is
there for successful resistance? On the opposing side can be rallied only
such mere irregulars as are willing to fight for airy nothings--for the
zest and colorfulness of life, for sociability and good fellowship, for
preserving to each man access to those resources of relaxation and
refreshment which, without injury to others, he finds conducive to his own

       *       *       *       *       *

It is hardly necessary to say that, in taking up these various movements,
no attempt has been made at anything like comprehensive discussion of
their merits. Whatever may be the balance between good and ill in any of
them, they all have in common one tendency that bodes danger to the
highest and most permanent interests of mankind; and it is with this alone
that I am concerned. What that tendency is has, I trust, been made
sufficiently clear; but it will perhaps be brought out more distinctly by
a consideration of the "Life Extension" propaganda more detailed and
specific than that given to the other three.

Conspicuous in the literature of this propaganda is the appeal to standard
modern practice in regard to machinery. "Those to whom the care of
delicate mechanical apparatus is entrusted," says the New York
Commissioner of Health, "do not wait until a breakdown occurs, but inspect
and examine the apparatus minutely, at regular intervals, and thus detect
the first signs of damage." "This principle of periodic inspection," says
the prospectus of the Life Extension Institute, "has for many years been
applied to almost every kind of machinery, except the most marvelous and
complex of all,--the human body." To find fault with the drawing of this
comparison, with the utilization of this analogy, would be foolish. That
many persons would be greatly benefited by submitting to these inspections
is certain; it is not impossible that they are desirable for most persons.
And the analogy of the inspection of machinery serves excellently the
purpose of suggesting such desirability. What is objectionable about its
use by the Life Extension propagandists is their evident complacent
satisfaction with the analogy as complete and conclusive. Yet nothing is
more certain than that, even from the strictly medical standpoint, it
ignores an essential distinction between the case of the man and the case
of the machine. The machine is affected only by the measures that may be
taken in consequence of the knowledge arising from the inspection; the man
is affected by that knowledge itself. Whether the possible physical harm
that may come to a man from having his mind disturbed by solicitude about
his health is important or unimportant in comparison with the good that is
likely to be done him by the following of the precautions or remedies
prescribed, is a question of fact to which the answer varies in every
individual case. It may be that in the great majority of cases the harm is
insignificant in comparison with the good. However that may be, the
question is there, and it is of itself fatal to the conclusiveness of the
_argumentum ex machina_. That this is not a captious criticism, that it is
based on substantial facts of life, ordinary experience sufficiently
attests; but it may not be amiss to point to a conspicuous contemporary
phenomenon which throws an interesting light on the matter. The Christian
Scientists regard the _ignoring_ of disease as the primary requisite for
health and longevity. That the Christian Science doctrine is a sheer
absurdity, no one can hold more emphatically than the present writer; but
it cannot be denied that in thousands of cases its acceptance has been of
physical benefit through its subjective effect upon the believer.
Personally, I would not purchase any benefit to my physical life at such
sacrifice of my intellectual integrity; I mention the point only by way of
accentuating the undisputed fact that the presence or absence of concern
about health may have a potent influence on one's bodily welfare.

Although it is a still further digression from the main purpose of this
paper, I must permit myself a few words on another point relating to the
strictly medical claims of the plan of "universal periodic medical
examination." It is natural that its advocates say nothing about the
danger of errors in diagnosis; everybody knows that this danger exists,
but sensible men do not allow it to deter them from consulting a
physician; in this, as in other affairs of life, they do not cry for the
moon, but do the best they can. But it seems to be wholly overlooked by
the advocates of the propaganda of "universal periodic examination" that
the extent of this danger under present conditions affords no indication
at all of what it would be under the system they contemplate. Its cardinal
virtue, they constantly proclaim, would be the detection of the very
slightest indication of impairment: "The task before us is to discover the
first sign of departure from the normal physiological path, and promptly
and effectually to apply the brake." The consequence must necessarily be
that for one case of false alarm that occurs today there will be a score,
or a hundred, under the new regime. For, in the first place, the
individuals seeking advice will not be, as they now are in the main,
selected cases in which there is some antecedent presumption that there is
something wrong; and secondly, the examiner, bent upon the one great
object of overlooking nothing, however slight, will give warnings which,
whether technically justifiable or not, will in great numbers of cases
have a wholly unjustifiable significance to the mind of the subject. Who
shall say how many persons will thus be made to carry through life a
burden of solicitude about their health from which, if left to their own
devices, they would have been wholly free?

But it is not my design to find fault with this scheme as a matter of
medical benefit; if I have ventured to point out some drawbacks, it is
only by way of showing that, even from the strictly medical standpoint the
cult of uniformity, of standardization, of mechanical perfection, is not
free from fault. But the great objection against that attitude of mind
which is typified in the appeal to the analogy of machinery is far more
vital. Our only interest in a machine is that we shall get out of it as
much, and as exact, work as possible. Our interest in our bodies is not so
limited. We may deliberately choose to forego the maximum of mechanical
perfection for the sake of living our lives in a way more satisfactory to
us than a constant care for that perfection would permit. Even the most
ardent of health enthusiasts--unless he be an insane fanatic--draws the
line somewhere. What he forgets is that other people prefer to draw the
line somewhere else. They choose to run a certain amount of risk rather
than have their health on their minds. To compel--whether by legal means
or by social pressure--every man to take precautions concerning his own
body which he deliberately prefers not to take; to make impossible, in
this most intimate and personal of all human concerns, the various ways of
acting which the infinite varieties of temperament and desire may
dictate--this would be such an invasion of personal liberty, such a
suppression of individuality, as would strike us all as appalling, had we
not grown so habituated to the mechanical, the statistical, measurement of
human values--to the Flatland view of life.

       *       *       *       *       *

What gives to these movements that I have been discussing the character
which I have been ascribing to them is not so much the specific things
which they severally aim to accomplish, but the spirit in which they are
carried on, and perhaps still more the spirit, or want of spirit, with
which they are met. It is not that a balance is falsely struck between the
benefit of the concrete, circumscribed, measurable improvement aimed at
and the injury done to some deeper, more pervading, and quite immeasurable
element or principle of life; it is that the balance is not struck at all.
The subtler, the less tangible, element is simply ignored. It was not
always so. It was not so in the last generation, or the generation before
that. The phenomenon is one that is closely bound up with the ruling
tendency of thought and action in all directions; it is not an accident of
this or that particular agitation. Perhaps in no direction is it more
convincingly manifested than in the prevailing tone of opinion, or at
least of publicly expressed opinion, in regard to the objects and ideals
of universities. That in the present state of the world's economic and
social development on the one hand, and of the various sciences on the
other, "service"--that is, service directly conducive to the general
good--should be regarded as one of the great objects of universities, is
altogether right; that it should be spoken of as their _only_ object,
which is the ruling fashion, is most deplorable. The object of a
university, said Mill, is to keep philosophy alive; yet it would go hard
with the present generation to point to any one more truly and profoundly
devoted to the service, the uplifting, of the masses of mankind than was
John Stuart Mill. Were he living he would recognize, as thoroughly as the
best efficiency man of them all, that the universities of today have
opportunities and duties which were undreamed of half a century ago. But
he would know, too, that in those activities which are directed to the
promotion of practical efficiency, the university is but one of many
agencies, and that if it were not doing the work some other means would be
found for supplying the demand. Its paramount value he would find now, as
he did then, in the service it renders not to the ordinary needs of the
community but to the higher intellectual interests and strivings of
mankind. That so few of us have the courage clearly to assert a position
even distantly approaching this--such a position as was mere matter of
course among university men in the last generation--is perhaps the most
significant of all the indications of our drift toward Flatland.



It is Hawthorne, I think, who tells us that when he was a boy he used once
in a while to go down to the wharves in Salem, and lay his hand on the
rail of some great East India merchantman, redolent of spices, and thus
bring himself in actual touch with the mysterious orient. But there is
nothing strange in this: almost anything that we can feel or see may start
the flight of fancy, and open to us prophetic visions. This is even true
of such dry symbols as figures, for our journalists would never publish
statistics as they do, unless they knew that their readers liked to see
them. Travellers from other parts of the world have often laughed at our
fondness for revelling in the marvellous accounts of our material
dimensions, but they should remember that people who do not have a taste
for poetry may yet have a taste for romance, and that big figures do
appeal to the imagination.

It is true that there may be something portentous in bigness. "Tom" Reed,
as he was affectionately called, said many wise things in a jesting way.
At a certain crisis in our history he exclaimed: "I don't want Cuba and
Hawaii; I've got more country now than I can love." A foreigner might
suppose that our politicians had similarly become terror-stricken at the
extent of our wealth and the rate at which it was growing. They may well
give the impression that there has been created in the "money power," a
Frankenstein monster, the control of whose murderous propensities has put
them at their wit's end.

Figures are notorious liars; they may arouse emotion if looked at in any
light, but they must be looked at in many lights if we would get an
emotional effect that is truly worth while. Some very large figures
relating to Savings Banks have lately been published. The deposits in
these banks amount to over four and two-thirds billions of dollars, and
the number of separate accounts is about ten and two-thirds millions.
Savings deposits in all banks are about $7,000,000,000, the number of
accounts being 17,600,000. Probably the interest paid on the savings banks
deposits is 160 millions of dollars a year. I confess that these figures
give me much pleasure. I like to think that so many men have taken pains
to guard their wives and children against miserable want; that so many
women have to some extent made sure of their independence. It would not be
surprising to find that twelve millions of families, possibly half the
people of the country, were in this way protected against extreme penury.
Viewed in this light, the growth of wealth does not seem so terrible. One
might paraphrase Burke and say that such wealth as this loses half its
evil through losing all its grossness. Indeed one might go further and say
that if there were twice as much of this wealth, and every person in the
country had an interest in it, it would lose all of its evil.

To young people, this is all dry enough. They like to think of spending
money, not of saving it. But it is not at all dry to their elders. It is
what St. Beuve said of literary enjoyment, a "pure delice du gout et du
coeur dans la maturite." It is a "Pleasure of the Imagination" that can be
appreciated only by those like the old Scottish lawyer, who justified his
penurious prudence by saying that he had shaken hands with poverty up to
the elbow when he was young, and had no intention to renew the
acquaintance. We have not, at least in the Northern part of our country,
had the terrible experiences of the people of Europe, who are even now
hiding their money in a vague apprehension of danger, inherited from
centuries of rapine; but there are few of those who have given hostages to
fortune who have not had many hours, and even years, of distressing
anxiety concerning the future of their families. The greater the provision
made against this heart-corroding care by a people, the happier should
that people be.

It seems so unselfish a luxury to revel in these comfortable statistics,
that one is tempted to broaden his vision, and take in the four or five
billions of assets heaped up by the six or seven millions of people who
have insured their lives, and the one hundred and fifty or two hundred
millions of dollars paid out yearly to lighten the distress attending the
death of husbands and fathers of families,--to say nothing of a much
greater sum repaid policy-holders. In many cases, happily, death causes no
actual want; but against these cases we may offset the stupendous number
of policies insuring against industrial accidents, possibly twenty-five
millions of them, representing one quarter of the people of the
country--for we may be sure that there are few payments made under these
policies that do not actually alleviate suffering. We have here a colossal
aggregate of altruism on the part of the policy-holders, an intangible
national asset grander than all the material wealth which it represents;
for the sordid element in all these savings is necessarily small. There is
a point in the old story of the gambler on the Mississippi steamboat who
listened attentively to the persuasive arguments of a life-insurance
agent; he "allowed" that he was willing to bet on almost any kind of game,
but declined to take a hand in one where he had to die to win. It is
painful to think of the infinity of petty economies, of all the grievous
deprivations, the positive hardships, undergone in so many millions of
families, day by day, and year by year, to secure these policies of
insurance; but, as Plato said, "the good is difficult." There is no
heroism where there is no self-sacrifice. Whoever is disquieted by the
growth of "materialism" may be relieved by reflecting that when so many
millions of people are denying themselves present enjoyments in order that
others may be spared pain in the future, there is such a leaven of high
motive among us as may leaven the whole lump.

       *       *       *       *       *

It would be easy to keep on in this exalted strain, but perhaps it is a
little too much in the style of a life-insurance advertisement. We may
correct any such impression, by changing our point of view. When we
consider the difficulties and the hindrances in the way of laying up these
savings, while the moral effect of the self-sacrifice hitherto involved is
enhanced, the question comes up whether this altruistic exertion can be
maintained in the future. How many of the ten millions of depositors in
the savings banks have considered that their rulers at Washington give
away every year in military pensions a sum equal to all, and more than
all, the income earned by the four billions of dollars in the banks? When
after many years, it seemed that this burden might at last begin to be
lightened, it was suddenly increased by the last Congress perhaps thirty
millions a year. Why should so many people scrimp, year in and year out,
when the equivalent of all the toil and all the self-denial is thus swept

Senator Aldrich has told the country that its affairs could be carried on
for three hundred millions of dollars a year less than it now pays. He is
a very competent witness, and no one has contradicted him. If the attempt
had been made, he could perhaps have shown--he could certainly show
now--that three hundred millions was an understatement. But this sum is
nearly equal to the income earned by the investments of all the savings
banks and all the life-insurance companies of the country. If our rulers
had borrowed ten billions of dollars at three per cent. and had wasted it
all, the country would be financially about where it is now. They have not
borrowed this ten billions of dollars, but if Mr. Aldrich is right, they
are spending the interest on it. They have in effect mortgaged the wealth
of the people to the extent of all their deposits in the savings banks,
and all their investments in life-insurance companies, and are wasting the
income of these funds faster than it is earned. If anyone thinks this is
stating the case too strongly, he may add the waste of our state and
municipal rulers to that of those at Washington, and Mr. Aldrich's figure
will seem moderate enough.

       *       *       *       *       *

People who are comfortably off will reply to all this that we are getting
on pretty well, and seem to be on the whole doing better from year to
year. There is a well known passage in Macaulay's History which may be
thought to give support to optimism of this kind. "No ordinary
misfortune," he said, "no ordinary misgovernment, will do so much to make
a nation wretched as the constant progress of physical knowledge, and the
constant effort of every man to better his condition will do to make a
nation prosperous."

No one will deny that the history of England justifies this statement; but
let us remember the reason that Macaulay gave for this insuperable
prosperity. "Every man has felt entire confidence that the State would
protect him in the possession of what had been earned by his diligence and
hoarded by his self-denial."

It is impossible to maintain that every man now feels this entire
confidence. The income "earned by his diligence" is henceforth to be taxed
at a progressive rate, and the demagogues are already complaining that the
rate is not high enough. The inheritance of his family, "hoarded by his
self-denial," protected by the State until within a few years, now pays
taxes which amount to the interest on a billion of dollars. We are assured
by a railroad officer that three measures of legislation have increased
the expenses of his corporation alone by a sum equal to the interest on
$32,000,000, with no appreciable benefit to the public. The number of such
laws is incalculable, and the cost of complying with them has become an
almost intolerable burden. The income of the railroads declines, while
their taxes increase, in some cases two or three fold. Lawyers and office
holders thrive and are cheerful; investors suffer and tremble.

The people of New York seem just now to be in a way to find out how the
enormous taxes which their rulers have levied on them are expended; but
New York has no monopoly of corrupt rulers, and the cost of investigating
extravagance is itself extravagant. And yet people wonder at the increased
cost of living! Unfortunately the oppressions of government do worse than
discourage business enterprise; they tend to demoralize society. There are
too many men who hesitate to marry because they do not have confidence in
the future, too many married people who do not dare to have more than one
or two children, if they dare to have any, to make it possible to maintain
that there is now no dread of more than ordinary misgovernment.

       *       *       *       *       *

It is difficult to ascertain the total wealth of the country. The census
bureau is notoriously dilatory. Its latest estimate was for 1904, when
this aggregate was computed to be $107,000,000,000, or about $1,300 _per
caput_. Assuming this ratio, the wealth of our people should now be over
$120,000,000,000; but the figures are largely conjectural. It happens,
however, that we possess some figures that are altogether trustworthy. In
the year 1909 the Federal Government imposed a tax of one per cent. on the
net income of every corporation, joint stock company, or association,
including insurance companies, organized for profit, whenever this net
income is over $5,000. There are some other exemptions, but they are not
sufficient to demand consideration, and may be disregarded. Now we may be
absolutely certain of one thing, and that is that the net income of those
concerns will not be overestimated. Their net income may be more than what
they report for the purposes of taxation, but it surely cannot be less.
For the past year it seems probable that this tax will produce nearly
thirty-five millions of dollars net income, after deducting all expenses,
losses, depreciation, interest on debts and on deposits paid by banks, and
dividends from other companies subject to the tax.

It may be more, but it cannot be less. Here our certainty ends. Guesses
will vary, but in view of what we know in a general way of the conditions
of business during the past year, we may perhaps venture to assume that
the net income of these concerns is six per cent. of their real wealth. If
this assumption is correct, their total wealth is 60 billions of dollars,
or one half of the total wealth of the nation.

This estimate may be confirmed to some extent by other statistics. Calling
the physical value of the railroads fourteen billions, their net earnings
at five per cent. would be 700 millions, which corresponds well enough
with the figures of the government, although some railroad men would make
their net earnings much less. We do not know the net income of the untaxed
corporations. Their returns would show its amount, but the government does
not supply the information. As there must be now nearly 250,000 such
corporations, if their average income is only $2,000 a year, the total
could be $500,000,000. If it is $4,000, their income would be almost a
billion dollars. On a 5 per cent. basis, the wealth of these corporations
would be nearly 20 billion dollars. It seems, on the whole, that the
wealth held by corporations is probably more than half our total wealth
rather than less.

       *       *       *       *       *

The bearing of these figures on our subject is now apparent. All of this
property is disfranchised. It is, economically, to a very great extent
disfranchised; politically, it is altogether disfranchised. What I mean by
this is that the owners of this wealth, as owners, have very little to
say, and nothing to do, about its care and management. Probably more than
half of our people are directly or indirectly interested in it as owners.
They have been attracted by a desire to share, however humbly, in big and
famous enterprises, by the freedom from liability of the portion of their
estates outside the particular investments, and by the freedom at death or
withdrawal of associates from appraisals and accountings and probable
closing of the business, as is the inevitable practice in mere
partnerships. Two centuries ago people who saved money could hardly find
ways to invest it. The practice of incorporation has enormously increased
our wealth by putting a stop to hoarding without interest, stimulating
saving, and broadening industry. The number of individual owners of the
bonds and stocks of corporations is incalculable, and their holdings added
to those of savings banks, insurance companies, trust companies and other
fiduciary institutions, churches, hospitals, and colleges, make up a total
of almost fabulous extent. It is true that large sums are loaned to
persons, and on mortgages of real estate; but for most people such
investments are not desirable or convenient, and they are altogether
inadequate to absorb the vast sums that are available. In fact probably
most investments of this character are now made by corporations who gather
the savings of little depositors and premium payers; and it would cost
much more to make them in any other way.

       *       *       *       *       *

Corporations, therefore, are necessary, but they necessarily separate the
ownership of wealth from its management. To invest is generally to entrust
your money to another, and those who invest in corporations, unless they
control them, are economically disfranchised, because the stockholders in
all large corporations almost never influence the management of their
property, and as a rule do not know anything about it. They don't because
they can't. A few years ago a very large number of people were much
worried by the exposure of some scandalous doings by the managers of
certain great life-insurance companies. They would have been very glad to
combine and choose better managers if they could; but they couldn't. Laws
were passed for the purpose of enabling the policy-holders to select their
trustees, but the only result has been a ridiculous and rather expensive
fiasco. As in politics, the rank and file select the managers selected for
them by a few men who understand the situation. When many thousands of
people own stock in a concern, they live all over this continent and in
foreign parts, and it is a physical impossibility to bring them together.
They do not know one another, and very few of them know much about the
affairs of the concern, and if they know anything of the candidates that
may be suggested, it is generally only by hearsay.

How many of the eighty-eight thousand stockholders in the Pennsylvania
Railroad, for instance, have ever attended a meeting? For that matter, how
many of them have ever studied the report of the railroad? Not one in ten
could spare the time to read it, perhaps not one in a hundred could master
it. The report may be read in a few hours; it would take as many months,
if not years to verify it. Very nearly half these stockholders are women;
the average holding is 120 shares, (par $50), and one-sixth of the
stockholders own less than 10 shares each. Ten thousand of them are
abroad. Much stock is held by trustees, whose beneficiaries are probably
very numerous, and totally incompetent to understand railroad management.
There are also more than twenty thousand holders of stock in subsidiary
corporations controlled by the Pennsylvania Railroad. No one can tell the
number of bondholders; perhaps there are as many as there are employees,
making an aggregate of almost half a million.

       *       *       *       *       *

Sometimes trustees abuse their office; but on the whole they have done
pretty well, and whether they have or not, there is no other way in which
large capitals can be managed. All civilization rests on confidence. Such
a vast fabric could not be built on confidence unless confidence was
deserved. As a matter of fact, a man invests his money just as he invests
in a surgeon. He does not think of directing the surgeon how to operate.
If the operation does not succeed, he tries another surgeon next time--if
there is a next time.

Of course all this applies chiefly to the large corporations. There are
many thousands of small ones, having few stockholders, who reside where
the business is established. These stockholders know more or less of the
details of the business; they can judge to some extent how it is carried
on, they are often acquainted with the managers, or are the managers
themselves, and if not, they are able sometimes to combine and change the
management. And I will anticipate a little and say here that the property
of such a corporation located in a small town is often to some extent not
politically disfranchised, because the people of the town understand that
they are directly interested in the prosperity of the business. But it
seems almost impossible for the stockholders to change the management of a
large corporation. It has been done a few times. Mr. Harriman notoriously
did it by using the money of one concern to buy the stock of another, and
that is almost the only way in which it has been done. No doubt there has
been an immense deal of combination which has resulted in change of
management, but this has not been because the stockholders combined to
oust their trustees, but because they thought they saw a good chance to
sell their stock to those who would pay high for the control, or to
participate in these combinations. There have been a good many cases where
an enterprising speculator has managed to get hold of a majority of the
stock and change the control, and powerful bankers can sometimes get
proxies enough to put a stop to bad management; but spontaneous movements
of this kind on the part of the mass of the stockholders are extremely

Beyond dispute then, the great mass of wealth held by corporations is
almost wholly under the control of their managers, and not the mass of the
owners. Mr. Hill has recently testified that he never knew a stockholder
to attend a meeting except to make trouble; by which he perhaps meant that
when a single stockholder appeared, it was to get paid for not making

       *       *       *       *       *

It need hardly be said that no such thing as legitimate representation of
corporate wealth is known in our politics, and the representation of
individual wealth is very limited. The theory of government by manhood
suffrage, so far as there is any theory, is now entirely personal. In
early times the freemen of the town, or little commune, met and legislated
according to their needs. To be a freeman one had to own property; to
"have a stake in the country." Nowadays nearly all the men who have no
property can vote, and some that have property cannot. In England, they
are doing away with "plural voters." Heretofore it was thought just, when
a man owned land in more than one place, that he should have his say in
the government of all; but this is now forbidden. The right was never
recognized in this country, partly because formerly men seldom owned
property in two places, but as transportation improved the conditions
changed. The "commuters" are legion. Their business and their capital are
under one jurisdiction and their dwellings and families under another; but
they can vote in only one. Many thousands of men own houses in both city
and country. They could help in the government of both, but are
disfranchised in one or the other. Under our complicated systems of
registration, they are often disfranchised at both.

Of course when population increases, the town meeting becomes a physical
impossibility. There is no more direct legislation; it has to be
delegated. The power is transferred to the city councils, and to the state
and national legislatures. In other words, the interests of the owners of
wealth are put in charge of trustees. According to Hamilton, the theory of
our government is that the people will "naturally" choose the wisest of
their number to represent them. There is not much basis for this
assumption. Rousseau scouted it. According to him, the _volonte generale_
could be ascertained only in the town meeting, and he seriously maintained
that the ideal government for the Roman empire was by the gangs of rioters
that the politicians marshalled in the Forum at Rome under the name of
_comitia_. All that the theory of our government requires, is that our
rulers shall be such men as are designated by the majority of the voters.
That they should be wise and good men may accord with the theory of
aristocracy; it is no part of the theory of democracy, and is certainly a
very small part of the practice.

When I say that half of the property of this country is disfranchised, I
mean that the nature of this property is such that it is peculiarly
subject to the power of rulers, and that the owners of it have hardly any
legitimate way of defending it against the arbitrary exercise of this
power. The corporation is created by the legislature; men cannot combine
their capitals and avoid unlimited liability for the debts of the
combination, unless the law specifically authorizes the proceeding. Of
course, if the legislature has power to make such grants, it must have
power to alter them. In short, property held by a corporation is held at
the will of the legislature, and in a way and to an extent that property
held by an individual is not. It is not very easy for the legislature to
plunder or blackmail individuals, even when they are disfranchised,
because it has to be done by general laws, and direct methods arouse
direct opposition. But, as we have seen, stockholders as a class cannot
defend their rights, and as things are now, their trustees cannot have
much to say concerning the laws that affect their property. Managers of
large corporations are now commonly denounced as unfit to be legislators,
and are practically excluded from the halls of legislation. In some states
they are even specifically disfranchised, so far as holding office is
concerned, and, under the new despotism, ironically dubbed the new
freedom, every man whose wealth and ability make his aid important to many
enterprises, is to be forbidden to participate in more than one. Yet
property is almost entirely subject to the disposition of the legislature!
not entirely, for the courts afford some protection; but even this is now
threatened: we may "progress" so far as to make it unconstitutional for a
judge to declare any law unconstitutional.

It goes without saying that half the property of the country will not
submit to spoliation without a struggle. If it cannot have representation
legitimately, it will try to get it illegitimately or extra legitimately.
The managers of corporations have in the past found many ways to influence
legislation. Despite the prejudices against them, some of them have had
themselves chosen as legislators; even as judges. Some have brought about
the election of legislators who would act in their favor, and have even
bribed legislators. Until recently it was not even unlawful for these
managers to use the money of their stockholders in political
contributions; some managers acted on the "Good Lord! Good Devil!"
principle. Probably most of the politicians paid no railroad fares. Many
of them got passes for their families and their friends; and it was
certainly to be expected that they should listen to the requests of those
who granted these favors. The situation became grotesque when a great
ruler, seeking a nomination to office with the proclaimed purpose of
enforcing the laws against rebates and passes, required the railroad
managers to furnish him free transportation on his righteous mission.

There were obvious objections to these practices, and public opinion
finally compelled our rulers to pass laws prohibiting them. Theoretically
the managers of corporations are now effectually disfranchised. They dare
not offer themselves as candidates for office. They scarcely dare to
favor, even secretly, the choice of rulers who will listen to them.
Fortunately, however, they hardly longer dare to offer bribes. Anyone on
friendly terms with them is politically a suspicious character. Any lawyer
who has been employed by them becomes unavailable as a candidate for
office. Our legislators, as was to be expected, at once showed the effect
of release from restraint. It has been uncharitably said that in revenge
for the loss of their passes and other favors, they attacked the
railroads; but there has been considerable voting of more mileage, and our
congressmen at least voted themselves ample indemnity in larger salaries,
and they opened fire on corporations in general and railroads in
particular, with a broadside of statutes. Against this fire the property
of millions of small holders in the corporations has been almost
defenceless. Some of these statutes are so drawn that the plain business
man does not know whether he is a criminal or not; if he could afford to
consult the best of lawyers it would not help him much. The only safe
course to pursue is to agree with the adversary quickly; to plead guilty
to whatever charge is made, and beg for mercy. That one is innocent is
immaterial. The expense of litigation is nothing to the rulers of the
United States; but it may be ruinous to their subjects. The cost of the
commissions and investigations and prosecutions of the last few years has
been enormous. Only lawyers can contemplate it without consternation.

True, the managers of large corporations can make their protests heard.
They can publish their pleas in the newspapers, and issue pamphlets, and
they can appear before committees and commissions, and submit arguments.
The managers of small corporations cannot afford such measures. You might
as well refer a servant-girl who couldn't collect her wages, to the Hague
Tribunal, as to send a plain business man to Washington to plead his

The animus of these statutes is hostility to great corporations. But it is
impossible to legislate against great corporations without hitting the
small ones. Take the case of the recent corporation income tax; the
244,000 corporations exempt from the tax had to make out their inventories
and keep their books and report their proceedings precisely as if they
were liable to the tax. A fine of from $1,000 to $10,000 and a 50 per
cent. increased assessment were the penalties for failure. But the cost of
complying with all the requirements of the law, for a corporation having
an income of two or three thousand dollars, cannot be figured at much less
than the tax. Many corporations have no net income. The managers of these
concerns are not expert book-keepers, and their returns must be in many
cases so inaccurate as to expose them to prosecution if the game were
worth the candle. If we assume that the average cost of making out the
return is only ten dollars, we have a bill of $2,400,000, which the
stockholders, or the employees, or the customers, must pay for the
privilege of demonstrating that the small corporations are not liable to
pay anything at all.

The corporation income tax law was really an act of popular dislike of
corporations exercising great monopolies. Grouping all the little
corporations with them was an absurdity and a cruelty.

Corporations have no feelings. They are not wounded by the hostility of
legislatures. The managers of corporations of large capital have feelings,
and some of them are wounded in their pride by this hostility. But they
need not suffer in their pockets. They are abundantly able to protect
their own property; they know how to make money on the short side of the
market as well as the long side. But the managers of the concerns of small
capital are seldom able to do this. Oppressive laws cause suffering to
them, to the mere holders of stock in all corporations, to the creditors
of all, to the employees, and to the customers. Many of these laws profess
to be meant to favor small people as against big people--to restrain the
rich corporations so that the poor ones may have more liberty. There is no
evidence to show that this result is attained, or that the country would
be better off if it were attained. But there is plenty of evidence to show
that half the people of the country are suffering from these legislative
attacks on their property. The men who manage the great corporations,
whatever their faults, are men of enterprise and courage. They are the
true progressives; the prosperity that they diffuse among the whole people
is ordinarily more than can be destroyed by our progressive politicians.
They are now beginning to feel that their rulers are discriminating
against them as a class, and are uneasy and disheartened, and reluctant to
embark in new enterprises; and the progress of the country is halted by
their apprehension. It is not the rich who suffer most: it is "the
unemployed," and the millions of dumb, helpless, struggling thrifty men
and women whose hard earned savings constitute a large part of the capital
of the corporations; and who are already alarmed at the shrinking value of
these savings. It is, perhaps most of all, the mass of ignorant unthrifty
poor, whose chief wealth is the wages paid them by the corporations which
they are taught to look on as their oppressors.


In his illuminating essay on _The Lantern-Bearers_, Stevenson complains of
the vacuity of that view of life which he finds expressed in the pages of
most realistic writers. "This harping on life's dulness and man's meanness
is a loud profession of incompetence; it is one of two things: the cry of
the blind eye, _I cannot see_, or the complaint of the dumb tongue, _I
cannot utter_." And then, with a fine flourish, he declares:--"If I had no
better hope than to continue to revolve among the dreary and petty
businesses, and to be moved by the paltry hopes and fears with which they
surround and animate their heroes, I declare I would die now. But there
has never an hour of mine gone quite so dully yet; if it were spent
waiting at a railway junction, I would have some scattering thoughts, I
could count some grains of memory, compared to which the whole of one of
these romances seems but dross."

"If it were spent waiting at a railway junction" ... Here, with his
instinct for the perfect phrase, Stevenson has pointed a finger at the one
experience which is commonly accepted as the acme of imaginable dulness.
This man, who could be happy at a railway junction, could not have found a
prouder way of boasting to posterity that he had never "faltered more or
less in his great task of happiness."

It is because railway junctions are the most unpopular places in the world
that they have been singled out for praise in THE UNPOPULAR REVIEW. Poor
places, lonely and forlorn, cursed by so many, celebrated by so
few,--surely they have waited over-long for an apologist.... But first of
all, in order to be fair, we must consider the customary view of these
points of punctuation in the text of travel.

Far up in Vermont, at a point vaguely to the east of Burlington, there is
a place called Essex Junction. It consists of a dismal shed of a station,
a bewildering wilderness of tracks, and an adjacent cemetery, thickly
populated (according to a local legend) with the bodies of people who have
died of old age while waiting for their trains. This elegiac locality was
visited, many years ago, by the Honorable E.J. Phelps, once ambassador of
the United States to the court of St. James's. He was allotted several
hours for the contemplation of the cemetery; and his consequent
meditations moved him to the composition of a poem, in four stanzas, which
is a little classic of its kind. Space is lacking for a quotation of more
than the initial stanza; but the taste of a poem, as of a pie, may
conveniently be judged from a quadrant of the whole.--

  With saddened face and battered hat
    And eye that told of blank despair,
  On wooden bench the traveller sat,
    Cursing the fate that brought him there.
  "Nine hours," he cried, "we've lingered here
    With thoughts intent on distant homes,
  Waiting for that delusive train
    That, always coming, never comes:
      Till weary, worn,
      Distressed, forlorn,
  And paralyzed in every function!
      I hope in hell
      His soul may dwell
  Who first invented Essex Junction!"

It was apparently the purpose of the writer to convey the impression that
his period of waiting had been passed without pleasure; but yet we may
easily confute him with another quotation from _The Lantern-Bearers_. "One
pleasure at least," says Stevenson, "he tasted to the full--his work is
there to prove it--the keen pleasure of successful literary composition."
Was this honorable author ever moved to such eloquence by an audience with
Queen Victoria? Never; so far as we know. Was not Essex Junction,
therefore, a more inspiring spot than Buckingham Palace? Undeniably. Then,
why complain of Essex Junction?

For, indeed, the pleasure that we take from places is nothing more nor
less than the pleasure we put into them. A person predisposed to boredom
can be bored in the very nave of Amiens; and a person predisposed to
happiness can be happy even in Camden, New Jersey. I know: for I have
watched American tourists in Amiens; and once, when I had gone to Camden,
to visit Walt Whitman in his granite tomb, I was wakened to a strange
exhilaration, and wandered all about that little dust-heap of a city
amazing the inhabitants with a happiness that required them to smile. "All
architecture," said Whitman, "is what you do to it when you look upon
it;... all music is what awakes from you when you are reminded by the
instruments": and I must have had this passage singing in my blood when I
enjoyed that monstrous courthouse dome which stands up like a mushroom in
the midst of Camden.

I have never been to Essex Junction; but I should like to go there--just
to see (in Whitman's words) what I could do to it. Imagine it upon a windy
night of winter, when a hundred discommoded passengers are turned out,
grumbling, underneath the stars,--coughing invalids, and kicking infants,
and indignant citizens, scrambling haphazard among tottering trunks, and
picking their way from train to train. Imagine their faces, their voices,
their gesticulations: here, indeed, you will see more than a theatre-full
of characters. Or, if human beings do not interest you, imagine the
mysterious gleam of yellow windows veiled behind a drift of intermingled
smoke and steam. Listen, also, to the clang of bells, the throb and puff
of the engines, and the shrill shriek of their whistles. Or peer into the
station-shed, made stuffy by the breath of many loiterers; and contrast
their death in life with the life in death of those others who loiter
through eternity beneath the gravestones of the cemetery. I can imagine
being happy with all this (and even writing a paragraph about it
afterwards): but, above all, I should like to gather those hundred
discommoded passengers upon the station-platform, and to rehearse and lead
them in a solemn chant of the refrain of Phelps's poem. Imagine a hundred
voices singing lustily in unison,

      "I hope in hell
      His soul may dwell
  Who first invented Essex Junction,"

under the vast cathedral vaulting of the night, until the adjacent dead
should seem to stand up in their graves and join the anthem of
anathema.... Who is there so bold to tell me that enjoyment is impossible
in such a place as this?

There is very little difference between places, after all: the true
difference is between the people who regard them. I should rather read a
description of Hoboken by Rudyard Kipling than a description of Florence
by some New England schoolmarm. To the poet, all places are poetical; to
the adventurous, all places are teeming with adventure: and to experience
a lack of joy in any place is merely a sign of sluggish blood in the

So, at least, it seems to me; for not otherwise can I explain the fact
that, like my beloved R.L.S., I have always enjoyed waiting at railway
junctions. I love not merely the marching phrases, but also the commas and
the semi-colons of a journey,--those mystic moments when "we look before
and after" and need not "pine for what is not." I have never done much
waiting in America, which is in the main a country of express trains, that
hurl their lighted windows through the night like what Mr. Kipling calls
"a damned hotel;" but there is scarcely a country of Europe except Russia
whose railway junctions are unknown to me. In many of these little
nameless places I have experienced memorable hours: and because the less
enthusiastic Baedeker has neglected to star and double-star them, I have
always wanted to praise them, in print somewhat larger than his own. Space
is lacking in the present article for a complete guide to all the railway
junctions of Europe; but I should like to commemorate a few, in gratitude
for what befell me there.

There is a junction in Bavaria whose name I have forgotten; but it is very
near Rothenburg, the most picturesquely medieval of all German cities. It
consists merely of a station and two intersecting tracks. When you enter
the station, you observe what seems to be a lunch-counter; but if you step
up to it and innocently order food, a buxom girl informs you that no food
is ever served there--and then everybody laughs. This pleasant
cachinnation attracts your attention to the assembled company. It consists
of many peasants, in their native costumes (which any painter would be
willing to journey many miles to see), who are enjoying the delicious
experience of travel. They are great travelers, these peasants. Once a
month they take the train to Rothenburg, and once a month they journey
home again, to talk of the experience for thirty days. All of them have
heard of Nuremberg [which is actually less than a hundred miles
away],--that vast and wonderful metropolis, so far, so very far, beyond
the ultimate horizon of their lives. They would like to see it some
day--as I should like to see the Taj Mahal--but meanwhile they content
themselves with the great adventure of going to Rothenburg,--a city that
is really much more interesting, if they could only know. In the very
midst of these congregated travelers, I casually set down a suit-case
which was plastered over with many labels from many lands; and this
suit-case affected them as I might be affected by a messenger from Mars.
They spelled out many unfamiliar languages, and a murmur of amazement
swept through the entire company when one of them discovered that that
suit-case had been to Morocco. Morocco, they assured me, was a place where
black men rode on camels; and I had no heart to tell them that it was a
country where white men rode on mules. Then another of these travelers--an
old man, with a face like one of Albrecht Duerer's drawings--discovered a
label that read "Venezia." "Is that," he said, "Venedig?" with a little
gasp. "Yes; Venedig," I responded, "where the streets are water." Slowly
he removed his hat. "Ach, Venedig!" he sighed; and then he stooped down,
and, with the uttermost solemnity, he kissed the label.... And then I
understood the vast impulsion of that _wanderlust_ which has pushed so
many, many Germans southward, to overrun that golden city that is wedded
to the sea. I have forgotten the name of that junction, as I said before;
but I have never been so happy in Munich as in this lonely station where
there is no food.

Speaking of food reminds me of Bobadilla, in southern Spain. Bobadilla
sounds as if it ought to be the name of a medieval town, with ghosts of
gaunt imaginative knights riding forth to tilt with windmills; but there
is no town at all at Bobadilla,--merely two railway restaurants set on
either side of several intersecting tracks. For some mysterious reason,
passengers from the four quarters of the compass--that is to say, from
Cordoba, Granada, Algeciras, or Sevilla--are required to alight here, and
eat, and change their trains. I remember Bobadilla as the place where you
spend your counterfeit money. Many of the current coins of southern Spain
are made of silver; and the rest are made of lead. For leaden five-peseta
pieces there is a local name, "Sevillan dollars," which ascribes their
coinage to the crafty artisans of the capital of Andalucia. These pieces,
which are plentiful, are just as good as silver dollars--when you can
persuade anyone to take them. The currency of any coinage, except gold,
depends entirely upon the faith of those who pass and take it and has no
reference to its intrinsic value; and, in southern Spain, the leaden
dollars serve as counters for just as many commercial transactions as the
dollars made of silver. The only difference is that they are commonly
accepted only after protest. In every Spanish shop, a slab of marble is
built into the counter, and on this slab all proffered coins are slapped
before they are accepted by the merchant. The traveler soon learns to
fling his change upon the pavement; and many merry arguments ensue
regarding the _timbre_ of their ring. I remember how once, in the wondrous
town of Ronda, when a beggar had imposed himself upon me as a guide and
led me into a church where High Mass was being chanted, I gave him a
peseta to get rid of him, and at once he flung it upon the pavement of the
church, and chased it, listening, across the nave. Thereafter, he
protested loudly that the piece was lead, and disrupted the intoning of
the priests. "Very well," said I, "it is, in any case, a gift; if you
don't want it, I will take it back": and he accepted it with bows and
smiles, and allowed the weary priests to continue their intonings. But
Bobadilla is the one place in southern Spain where money is never jingled
upon marble. There is no time between trains to quibble over minor
matters; and a "Sevillan dollar" accepted from one passenger is blithely
handed to another who is traveling in the opposite direction. I discovered
this fact on the occasion of my first visit to this interesting junction;
and on subsequent occasions I have eaten my fill at one or another of the
railway restaurants and settled the account with all the leaden money
garnered up from weeks of traveling. There is surely no dishonesty in
observing the custom of a country; and Bobadilla may be treasured by all
travelers as a clearing-house for counterfeit coins.

Again, in northern France, it was merely by some accident of changing
trains that I discovered the lovely little town of Dol. I found myself in
Saint Malo, for obvious reasons; and I desired to go to Mont Saint-Michel,
for reasons still more obvious--Mother Poulard's omelettes, and
architecture, and the incoming of the tide. Between them--the map told
me--was situated Dol. I made inquiries of the porter in the Saint Malo
hotel. He responded in English,--the English of _Ici on parle anglais_.
"Dol," said he, "is a dull place." He pronounced "Dol" and "dull" in
precisely the same manner, and smiled at his sickly pun. I did not like
that smile; and I alighted at the town that he despised. It was a little
picture-book of a place, with many toy-like medieval houses clustered side
by side around a market-place where peasants twisted the tails of cows. I
strolled to the cathedral--and found myself mysteriously in England. It
was a manly Norman edifice, sane and reticent and strong, set in a
veritable English green, with little houses round about, reminding one of
Salisbury. I entered the Cathedral; and found the nave to be composed in
what is called in England the "decorated" style, and the choir to give
hints of "perpendicular." And then I remembered, with a start, that the
ancestors of all that is most beautiful in England had migrated from
Normandy, and that here I was visiting them in their antecedent home.
"Saxon and Norman and Dane are we;" and all that was Norman in me reached
forth with groping hands to grasp the palms of those old builders who
reared this little sacrosanct cathedral in the far-off times when one
dominion extended to either side of the English Channel.

It was by a similar accident--desiring to transfer myself from Bourges to
Auxerre--that I discovered the wonderful junction-town of Nevers, which,
despite the guide-books, is more interesting than either of the others. It
possesses a Gothic cathedral with an apse at either end, that looks as if
two churches had collided and telescoped each other. There is also a
Romanesque church at Nevers which is just as simple and as manly as either
of the famous abbeys in Caen; and a chateau with rounded towers, which
once belonged to Mazarin. But the most amusing feature of this town is
that, though Bourges packs itself to bed at ten o'clock, Nevers sits
blithely up till twelve, listening to music in cafes, and watching
moving-pictures; and this amiable incongruity in a medieval town makes you
bless that complication of the time-table which has forced you, against
forethought, to stay there over night.

It is difficult for me to remember a railway junction in which there was
nothing to do; but perhaps Pyrgos, in Greece, comes nearest to this
description. At this point, you change cars on your way from Patras to
Olympia. The town is made of mud: that is to say, the single-storied
houses are built of unbaked clay. There is nothing to see in Pyrgos. But I
amused myself by addressing the inhabitants, in the English language, with
an eloquent oration that soon gathered them under my control; and
thereafter I set a hundred of them at the pleasant task of trying to push
the train for Olympia on its way to take me to the Hermes of Praxiteles. I
knew no word of their language, nor did they of mine; but they understood
that that train should be started, if human force were sufficient to help
the cars upon their way: and finally, when the engine puffed and snorted
with a tardily awakened sense of duty, the train was cheered by the entire
population as I waved my hand from the rear platform and quoted one of
Daniel Webster's perorations.

       *       *       *       *       *

Is it--I have often wondered--so difficult as people think, to be happy in
an hour "spent waiting at a railway junction"?... The kingdom of happiness
is within us; or else there is no truth in our assumption that the will of
man is free: and I am inclined to pity a man who, being happy in
Amalfi--the loveliest of all the places I have ever seen--cannot also
manage to be happy in Pyrgos--or in Essex Junction--and to communicate his
happiness to his responsive fellow-travelers.

The true enjoyment of traveling is to enjoy traveling; not to relish
merely the places you are going to, but to relish also the adventure of
the going. The most difficult train-journey I remember is the twenty-hour
trip from Lisbon to Sevilla, with a change of cars in the ghastly early
morning at the border-town of Badajoz and another change at noon at the
sun-baked, parched, and God-forsaken town of Merida; and yet I relish as
red letters on my personal map of Spain a pleasant quarrel over the price
of sandwiches at Badajoz and the way a muleteer of Merida flung a colored
cloak over his shoulder and posed for an unconscious moment like a
painting by Zuloaga.

And this philosophy has a deeper application to life at large: for all
life may be figured as a journey, and few there are who are natively
equipped for the enjoyment of all the waste and waiting places on the way.
The minds of most people are so fixed upon the storied capitals that are
featured in those works of fiction known as guidebooks that they are
impeded from enjoying the minor stations on their journey. "Hurry me to
Sevilla," cries the traveler--and misses the sight of my muleteer of
Merida. In America, our society is crammed with people who fail to enjoy
life on five thousand a year because their minds are fixed upon that
distant time when they hope to enjoy life on twenty thousand a year. And
if ever they attain that twenty thousand they will not enjoy it either;
but will merely peer forward to a hypothetical enjoyment at fifty thousand
a year. And this is the essence of their tragedy:--they have not learned
to wait with happiness.

Is there any reason for this inordinate ambition to "get on"? Louis
Stevenson was happier, as a small boy with a bull's-eye lantern at his
belt, than any king upon his throne. The secret of enjoyment is to learn
to look about us, to value what our destiny has given us, to transform it
into magic by some contributory gift of poetry or humor, to consider with
contentment the lilies of the field. The zest of life is in the living of
it; and "to travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive."

How often, in the roaring and tumultuary tide of life, we meet a man who
sighs, "If only I could have a single day in which there was nothing that
I had to do, nothing even that I had to think of, how happy I should be!"
and yet this self-same man, if set down at a railway junction, will at
once bestir himself to seek something to think of, something to do, and
will spurn the gift of leisure. The incessant hurry of our current life
has tragically lured us to forget the art of loitering. We are no longer
able--like Wordsworth, on his "old gray stone"--to sit upon a trunk at
some railway junction of our lives and listen reverently to the "mighty
sum of things forever speaking."

One of the loveliest women I have ever known--the late Alison
Cunningham--told me a little anecdote of the author of _The
Lantern-Bearers_ which, so far as I know, has never yet been published.
When little Louis was about five years old, he did something naughty, and
Cummy stood him up in a corner and told him he would have to stay there
for ten minutes. Then she left the room. At the end of the allotted
period, she returned and said, "Time's up, Master Lou: you may come out
now." But the little boy stood motionless in his penitential corner.
"That's enough: time's up," repeated Cummy. And then the child mystically
raised his hand, and with a strange light in his eyes, "Hush...," he said,
"I'm telling myself a story...."

And, in the _Christian Morals_ of Sir Thomas Browne, we may read the
following passage:--"He who must needs have company, must needs have
sometimes bad company. Be able to be alone. Lose not the advantage of
solitude, and the society of thyself; nor be only content, but delight to
be alone and single with Omnipresency. He who is thus prepared, the day is
not uneasy nor the night black unto him. Darkness may bound his eyes, not
his imagination. In his bed he may lie, like Pompey and his sons, in all
quarters of the earth; may speculate the universe, and enjoy the whole
world in the hermitage of himself."

Wordsworth sitting quiescent and receptive in a lakeside landscape, little
Louis standing in a corner, Sir Thomas Browne enjoying the whole world in
the hermitage of himself:--what a rebuke is offered by these images to
those who fret and fume away the leisure that is granted them at all the
waiting places of their lives!... These disgruntled travelers _nel mezzo
del cammin di nostra vita_ miss their privilege and duty of enjoying life
merely because they miss the point that life is, in itself, enjoyable.
They are so busy reading guide-books to the vague beyond that they shut
their minds to all that may be going on about them, or within them, at
way-stations. They close their eyes and ears to the immediate. They veto
all perception of the here and now. But life itself is always here and
now; and, truly to enjoy it, we must learn to look forever with
unfaltering eyes into the bright face of immediacy.

       *       *       *       *       *

And there is another point about railway junctions that reveals an
important application to the larger journey of our life. A friend of mine,
who is a great lover of painting, had occasion once (and only once) to
change trains at Basle, in the course of a journey from Lucerne to
Heidelberg. He had to wait two hours at this railway junction; and this
time he pleasantly expended in eating many dishes at a restaurant, and
amusing the lax porters by teaching them a method of economizing energy in
shifting trunks. It should be noted that this friend of mine was not
trying to "kill time;" for, like all genuine humanitarians, he of course
regards that tragic process as the least excusable of murders. He was
entirely happy for two hours in that railway station. But--having packed
his guide-book in a trunk--it was not until he reached Darmstadt, some
days later, that he discovered that several of the very greatest works of
Holbein are now resident in Basle. The two hours that he had spent playing
and eating might have been devoted to an examination of many masterpieces
of that art which, more than any other, he had crossed the seas to seek.
He has never yet been able to return to Basle; but for a sight of those
lost portraits of the most honest and straightforward of all German
painters, he would gladly sell his memories of both Lucerne and

Here we have a record of a great disappointment that was occasioned merely
by the common habit of despising railway junctions, and presuming them to
be inevitably dull. But this same unfortunate presumption, applied to life
at large, leads many people to overlook the nearness of some great
adventure. Interrogate a thousand men, and you will find that none of them
has first set eyes upon his greatest friend in the Mosque of Cordoba or in
Trafalgar Square. Every adventure of lasting consequence has confronted
all of them, without exception, in some hidden nook or cranny of the
world,--some place unknown to fame. Anybody is as likely to meet the woman
who is destined to become his wife, at Essex Junction on a wintry night,
as in the Parthenon by moonlight in the month of May. The most romantic
places in the world are often those that promised, in advance, to be the
least romantic.

Since this is so, how can anybody ever dare to shut his eyes to that
incalculable imminency of adventure which environs him even when he is
merely changing trains on some island-platform of the New York Subway? In
our daily living we are never safe from destiny; and who can ever know in
what vacuous and sedentary period of his experience he may suddenly be
called upon to entertain an angel unawares? It is best to be prepared for
anything, at any hour of our lives,--even at those moments that must,
perforce, be "spent waiting at a railway junction."


To assert today that the rich are for the most part entirely harmless is
to dare much, for the contrary opinion is greatly in favor. Such wholesale
condemnation of the rich assumes a more general and a more specific form.
They are said to be harmful to the body politic simply because they have
more money than the average: their property has been wrongly taken from
persons who have a better right to it, or is withheld from people who need
it more. But aside from being constructively a moral detriment from the
mere possession of wealth, the rich man may do specific harm through
indulging his vices, maintaining an inordinate display, charging too much
for his own services, crushing his weaker competitor, corrupting the
legislature and the judiciary, finally by asserting flagrantly his right
to what he erroneously deems to be his own. Such are the general and
specific charges of modern anti-capitalism against wealth. Like many deep
rooted convictions, these rest less on analysis of particular instances
than upon axioms received without criticism. The word spoliation does
yeoman service in covering with one broad blanket of prejudice the most
diverse cases of wealth. But spoliation is assumed, not proved. My own
conviction that most wealth is quite blameless, whether under the general
or specific accusation, is based on no comprehensive axiom, but simply on
the knowledge of a number of particular fortunes and of their owners. Such
a road towards truth is highly unromantic. The student of particular
phenomena is unable to pose as the champion of the race. But the method
has the modest advantage of resting not on a priori definitions, but on
inductions from actual experience; hence of being relatively scientific.

Before sketching the line of such an investigation, let me say that in
logic and common sense there is no presumption against the wealthy person.
Ever since civilization began and until yesterday it has been assumed that
wealth was simply ability legitimately funded and transmitted. Even modern
humanitarians, while dallying with the equation wealth = spoliation, have
been unwilling wholly to relinquish the historic view of the case. I have
always admired the courage with which Mr. Howells faced the situation in
one of those charming essays for the Easy Chair of _Harper's_. Driving one
night in a comfortable cab he was suddenly confronted by the long drawn
out misery of the midnight bread line. For a moment the vision of these
hungry fellow men overcame him. He felt guilty on his cushions, and
possibly entertained some St. Martin-like project of dividing his
swallowtail with the nearest unfortunate. Then common sense in the form of
his companion came to his rescue. She remarked "Perhaps we are right and
they are wrong." Why not? At any rate Mr. Howells was not permitted to
condemn in a moment of compassion the career of thrift, industry and
genius, that had led him from a printer's case to a premier position in
American letters, or, more concretely, he received a domestic dispensation
to cab it home in good conscience, though many were waiting in chilly
discomfort for their gift of yesterday's bread. The why so and why not of
this incident are my real subject. For Mr. Howells is merely a
particularly conspicuous instance of the kind of prosperity I have in
mind. We are all too much dazzled by the rare great fortunes. The newly
rich have spectacular ways with them. By dint of frequently passing us in
notorious circumstances, they give the impression of a throng. They are
much in the papers, their steam yachts loom large on the waters, they
divorce quickly and often, they buy the most egregious, old masters. By
such more or less innocent ostentations, a handful stretches into a
procession, much as a dozen sprightly supernumeraries will keep up an
endless defile of Macduff's army on the tragic stage. Let us admit that
some of the great wealth is more or less foolishly and harmfully spent; my
subject is not bank accounts, but people; and very wealthy people
constitute an almost negligible minority of the race. Their influence too
is much less potent than is supposed. A slightly vulgarizing tendency
proceeds from them, but in waves of decreasing intensity. Their vogue is
chiefly a _succes de scandale_. Sensible people will gape at the spectacle
without admiration, and even the reader of the society column in the
sensational newspapers keeps more critical detachment than he is usually
credited with. In any case neither the boisterous nor the shrinking
multimillionaire has any representative standing. He is not what a poor
person means by a rich person. Ask your laundress who is rich in your
neighborhood, and she will name all who live gently and do not have to
worry about next month's bills. True pragmatist, she sees that to be
exempt from any threat of poverty is to all intents and purposes to be
rich. Her classification ignores certain niceties, but corresponds roughly
to the fact, and has the merit of corresponding to government decree. Rich
people, since the income tax, are officially those who pay the tax but not
the surtax. Families with an income not less than four thousand dollars
nor more than twenty thousand comprise the harmless, middling rich. Let us
once for all admit that in the surtaxed classes there are many cases of
quite harmless wealth, while in the lower level of the rich, harmful
wealth will sometimes be found. Such exceptions do not invalidate the
general rule that all but a negligible fraction of the rich are included
in the first class of income taxpayers--on from four to twenty thousand,
that most of the property here held is blamelessly held in good
hands--wealth that in no fair estimate can be regarded as harmful. In
terms of British currency, our category of the middling rich would include
the poorer individuals of the upper classes, the richer persons of the
lower middle class, and the upper middle class as a whole. This comparison
is made not to apply an alien class system which holds very inadequately
here in America, but simply to avow the difficulty of my task of apology.
The bourgeoisie is equally suspect among radicals, reactionaries, and
artists. My middling rich are nothing other than what an European essayist
would quite brazenly call the _haute bourgeoisie_. It is quite a
comprehensive class, made up chiefly of professional men, moderately
successful merchants, manufacturers, and bankers with their more highly
paid employees, but including also many artists, and teachers of all
sorts. Incidentally it is an employing and borrowing class in various
degrees, hence especially subject to the exactions of the labor union at
one end, and of the great capitalist and the Trust at the other.

The general harmlessness of the wealth of this class rests upon the fact
that it is in small part inherited, but mostly earned by individual
effort, while such effort has usually been honestly and efficiently
rendered and paid for at a moderate rate. In fact the amount of capacity
that can be hired for the slightest rewards is simply amazing. It is the
distinction of this class as compared both with the wage earning and the
capitalist class--both of which agree in overvaluing their services and
extorting payment on their own terms--that it respects its work more than
it regards rewards. Consider the amount of general education and special
training that go to make a capable school superintendent, or college
professor; a good country doctor or clergyman--and it will be felt that no
money is more honestly earned. This is equally true of many lawyers and
magistrates, who are wise counsellors for an entire country side. It is no
less true of hosts of small manufacturers who make a superior product with
conscience. For the wealth, small enough it usually is, that is thus
gained in positions of especial skill and confidence, absolutely no
apology need be made. I sometimes wish that the Socialists for whom any
degree of wealth means spoliation, would go a day's round with a country
doctor, would take the pains to learn of the cases he treats for half his
fee, for a nominal sum, or for nothing; would candidly reckon his normal
fee against the long years of college, medical school and hospital, and
against the service itself; would then deduct the actual expenses of the
day, as represented by apparatus, motor, or horse service--I can only say
that if such an investigator could in any way conceive that physician as a
spoliator, because he earned twice as much as a master brick-layer or five
times as much as a ditch digger--if, I say, before the actual fact, our
Socialist investigator in any way grudges that day's earnings, his mental
and emotional confusion is beyond ordinary remedy. And such a physician's
earnings are merely typical of those of an entire class of devoted
professional men.

We do well to remind ourselves that the great body of wealth in the
country has been built up slowly and honestly by the most laborious means,
and accumulated and transmitted by self-sacrificing thrift. A rich person
in nine cases out of ten is merely a capable, careful, saving person,
often, too, a person who conducts a difficult calling with a fine sense of
personal honor and a high standard of social obligation. We are too much
dazzled by the occasional apparition of the lawyer who has got rich by
steering guilty clients past the legal reefs, of the surgeon who plays
equally on the fears and the purses of his patients, of the sensational
clergyman who has made full coinage of his charlatanism. All these types
exist, and all are highly exceptional. Most rich persons are
self-respecting, have given ample value received for their wealth, and
have less reason to apologize for it than most poor folks have to
apologize for their poverty.

Furthermore: for the maintenance of certain humdrum but necessary human
virtues, we are dependent upon these middling rich. It has been frequently
remarked that a lord and a working man are likely to agree, as against a
bourgeois, in generosity, spontaneous fellowship, and all that goes to
make sporting spirit. The right measure of these qualities makes for charm
and genuine fraternity; the excess of these qualities produces an enormous
amount of human waste among the wage earners and the aristocrats
impartially. The great body of self-controlled, that is of reasonably
socialized people, must be sought between these two extremes. In short the
building up of ideals of discipline and of habits of efficiency and of
good manners and of human respect is very largely the task of the middle
classes. Whereas the breaking down of such ideals is, in the present
posture of society, the avowed or unavowed intention of a considerable
portion of laboring men and aristocrats. The scornful retort of the
Socialist is at hand: "Of course the middle classes are shrewd enough to
practice the virtues that pay." Into this familiar moral bog that there
are as many kinds of morality as there are economic conditions of mankind,
I do not consent to plunge. I need only say that the so-called middle
class virtues would pay a workman or a lord quite as well as they do a
bourgeois. Moreover, while workmen and lords are prone to scorn the
calculating virtues of the middle classes, there is no indication that the
_bourgeoisie_ has selfishly tried to keep its virtues to itself. On the
contrary there is positive rejoicing in the middle classes over a workman
who deigns to keep a contract, and an aristocrat who perceives the duty of
paying a debt. In fine we of the middle classes need no more be ashamed of
our highly unpicturesque virtues than we are of our inconspicuous wealth.

So far from being in danger of suppression, we middling rich people are
likely to last longer than the capitalists who exploit us in practice, and
the workmen who exploit us on principle. Theoretically, and perhaps
practically, the very rich are in danger of expropriation. Theoretically
the course of invention may limit or almost abolish all but the higher
grades of labor. The need of the more skilful sort of service in the
professions, in manufacture, in agency of all sorts, is sure to persist.
The socialists expect to get such service for much less than it at present
brings, that is to make us poor and yet keep us working. Such a scheme
must break down, not through the refusal of the middling rich to keep at
work;--for I think there is loyalty enough to the work itself to keep most
necessary activities going after a fashion, even under the most untoward
conditions;--but because to make us poor is to destroy the conditions
under which we can efficiently render a somewhat exceptional service. Our
wealth is not an extraneous thing that can be readily added or taken away.
It is our possibility of self-education and of professional improvement,
it is the medium in which we can work, it is our hope of children. To take
away our wealth is to maim us. There is nothing humiliating in such an
avowal. It is merely an assertion of the integrity of one's life and work.
As a matter of fact no class is so well fitted to face the threat of a
proletarian revolution as we harmless rich. It is the class that produces
generals, explorers, inventors, statesmen. A social revolution with its
stern attendant regimentation would bear most heavily on the relatively
undisciplined class of working people. The disciplined class of the
middling rich is better prepared to meet such an eventuality. Accordingly
it is no mere selfishness or complacency that leads the middling rich to
oppose the pretensions of proletarianism on one side and of capitalism on
the other. It is rather the assertion of sound middle class morality
against two opposite yet somewhat allied forms of social immorality--the
strength that exaggerates its claims, and the weakness that claims all the
privileges of strength.

We are useful too as conserving certain valuable ideas. When I mention the
idea of the right of private property, I expect to be laughed at by a
large class of enthusiasts. Yet all of civilization has been built up on
the distinction between _meum_ and _tuum_. Without this idea there is not
the slightest inducement to persistent individual effort nor possibility
of progress for the individual or for the race. The fruitful diversities,
the germinative inequalities between men all depend on this right. And
today the right to one's own is doubly under attack from the violence of
laboring men, and the guile of those in positions of financial trust. The
strikers who offer as an argument the burning of a mine or wrecking of a
mill, and the directors who manipulate corporation accounts to pay
unearned dividends, are both undermining the right of property. Against
such counsels of force and fraud, the representatives of the common sense
and funded wisdom of mankind are the middling rich. It is an unromantic
service--doubtless breaking other people's windows or scaling their bank
accounts is much more thrilling--it is a public service obviously tinged
with self-interest, but none the less a public service of high and timely
importance. The business of keeping the sanity of the world intact as
against the wilder expressions of social discontent, and the uglier
expressions of personal envy and greed, may seem to lack zest and
originality today. History may well take a different view of the matter.
It would not be surprising to find a posthumous aureole of idealism
conferred upon those who amid the trumpeting of money market messiahs, and
the braying of self-appointed remodellers of the race, simply stood
quietly on their own inherited rights and principles.

Such are some not wholly minor uses for the middling rich. Should they be
abolished, many of the pleasanter facts and appearances of the world would
disappear with them. The other day I whisked in one of their motor cars
through miles of green Philadelphia suburbs dappled with pink magnolia
trees and white fruit blossoms--everywhere charming houses, velvety lawns,
tidy gardens. The establishing of a little paradise like that is of course
a selfish enterprise--a mere meeting of the push and foresight of real
estate operators with the thrift and sentiment of householders, yet it is
an advantage inevitably shared, a benefit to the entire community, an
example in reasonable working, living, and playing.

On the side of play we should especially miss these harmless rich. The
sleek horses on a thousand bridle paths and meadows are theirs, the
smaller winged craft that still protest against the pollution of the sea
by the reek of coal and the stench of gasoline; of their furnishing are
the graceful and widely shared spectacles not only of the minor yacht
racing but of the field sports generally. They constitute our militia. The
survival in the world of such gentler accomplishments as fencing,
canoeing, and exploration rests with the middling rich. They write our
books and plays, compose our music, paint our pictures, carve our statues.
The pleasanter unconscious pageantry of our life is conducted by their
sons and daughters. To be nice, to indulge in nice occupations, to express
happiness--this is not even today a reproach to any one. Indeed if any
approach to the dreamed socialized state ever be made, it will come less
through regimentation than through imitation of those persons of middle
condition who have managed to be reasonably faithful in their duties, and
moderate in their pleasures. To keep a clean mind in a clean body is the
prerogative of no class, but the lapses from this standard are
unquestionably more frequent among the poor and the very rich.

It is instructive in this regard to compare with the newspapers that serve
the middling rich, those that address the poor, and those that are owned
in the interest of well understood capitalistic interests. The extremes of
yellow journalism and of avowedly capitalistic journalism, meet in a
preference for salacious or merely shocking news, and in a predilection
for blatant, sophistical, or merely nugatory and time-serving editorial
expressions. Between the two really allied types of newspapers are a few
which exercise a decent censorship over questionable news, and habitually
indulge in the luxury of sincere editorial opinion. There are some
exceptions to the rule. In our own day we have seen a proletarian paper
become a magnificent editorial organ, while somewhat illogically
maintaining a random and sensational policy in its news columns. But
generally the distinction is unmistakable. Imagine the plight of New York
journalism if four papers, which I need not mention, ceased publication.
It would mean a distinct and immediate cheapening of the mentality of the
city. Then observe on any train who are reading these papers. It is plain
enough what class among us makes decent journalism possible.

Much is to be said for the abolition of poverty, and something for the
reduction of inordinate wealth. Poverty is being much reduced, and will be
farther, the process being limited simply by the degree to which the poor
will educate and discipline themselves. We shall never wholly do away with
bad luck, bad inheritance, wild blood, laziness, and incapacity: so some
poverty we shall always have, but much less than now, and less dire. The
fact that the large class of middling rich has been evolved from a world
where all began poor, is a promise of a future society where poverty shall
be the exception. But such increase of the wealth of the world, and of the
number of the virtually rich, will never be attained by the puerile method
of expropriating the present holders of wealth. That would produce more
poor people beyond doubt--but its effect in enriching the present poor
would be inappreciable. You cannot change a man's character and capacity
simply by giving him the wealth of another. In wholesale expropriations
and bequests the experiment has been many times tried, and always with the
same results. The wealth that could not be assimilated and administered
has always left the receiver or grasper in all essentials poorer than he
was before. Wealth is an attribute of personality. It is not
interchangeable like the parts of a standardized machine. The futility of
dispossessing the middling rich would be as marked as its immorality.

This essentially personal character of wealth must affect the views of
those who would attack what are called the inordinate fortunes. I hold no
brief for or against the multi-millionaire. In many cases I believe his
wealth is as personal, assimilated and legitimate as is the average
moderate fortune. In many cases too, I know that such gigantic wealth is
in fact the product of unfair craft and favoritism, is to that extent
unassimilated and illegitimate. Yet admitting the worst of great fortunes,
I think a prudent and fair minded man would hesitate before a general
programme of expropriation. He would consider that in many cases the
common weal needs such services as very wealthy people render, he would
reflect on the practical benefits to the world, of the benevolent
enterprises for education, research, invention, hygiene, medicine, which
are founded and supported by great wealth. In our time The Rockefeller
Institute will have stamped out that slow plague of the south, the hook
worm. To the obvious retort that the government ought to do this sort of
thing, the reply is equally obvious, that historically governments have
not done this sort of thing until enlightened private enterprise has shown
the way. Our prudent observer of mankind in general, and of the very rich
in particular, would again reflect that, granting much of the socialist
indictment of capital as illgained, common sense requires a statute of
limitations. At a certain point restitution makes more trouble than the
possession of illegitimate wealth. Debts, interest, and grudges cannot be
indefinitely accumulated and extended. It is the entire disregard of this
simple and generally admitted principle that has marred the socialist
propaganda from the first. From the point of view of fomenting hatred
between classes, to make every workingman regard himself as the residuary
legatee of all the grievances of all workingmen, at all times, may be
clever tactics, it is not a good way of making the workingman see clearly
what his actual grievance and expectancy of redress are in his own day and

With increasingly heavy income and inheritance taxes, the very rich will
have to reckon. Yet the multi-millionaire's evident utility as the milch
cow of the state, will cause statesmen, even of the anti-capitalistic
stamp, to waver at the point where the cow threatens to dry up from
over-milking. If the case, then, for utterly despoiling the harmful rich,
is by no means clear, the prospect for the harmless rich may be regarded
as fairly favorable. For the moment, caught between the headiness of
working folk, the din of doctrinaires, and the wiles of corporate
activity, the lot of the middling rich is not the most happy imaginable.
But they seem better able to weather these flurries than the windy,
cloud-compelling divinities of the hour. From the survival of the middling
rich, the future common weal will be none the worse, and it may even be


To render any real impression of the Chautauqua Summer Assembly, I must
approach this many-mooded subject from a personal point of view. Others,
more thoroughly informed in the arcana of the Institution, have written
the history of its development from small beginnings to its present
impressive magnitude, have analyzed the theory of its intentions, and have
expounded its extraordinary influence over what may be called the
middle-class culture of our present-day America. It would be beyond the
scope of my equipment to add another solemn treatise to the extensive list
already issued by the tireless Chautauqua Press. My own experience of
Chautauqua was not that of a theoretical investigator, but that of a
surprised and wondering participant. It was the experience of an alien
thrust suddenly into the midst of a new but not unsympathetic world; and,
if the reader will make allowance for the personal equation, some sense of
the human significance of this summer seat of earnest recreation may be
suggested by a mere record of my individual reactions.

I had heard of Chautauqua only vaguely, until, one sunny summer morning, I
suddenly received a telegram inviting me to lecture at the Institution. I
was a little disconcerted at the moment, because I was enjoying an
amphibious existence in a bathing-suit, and was inclined to shudder at the
thought of putting on a collar in July; but, after an hour or two, I
managed to imagine that telegram as a Summons from the Great Unknown, and
it was in a proper spirit of adventure that I flung together a few books,
and climbed into the only available upper berth on a discomfortable train
that rushed me westward.

In some sickly hour of the early morning, I was cast out at Westfield, on
Lake Erie,--a town that looked like the back-yard of civilization, with
weeds growing in it. Thence a trolley car, climbing over heightening hills
that became progressively more beautiful, hauled me ultimately to the
entrance of what the cynical conductor called "The Holy City." A fence of
insurmountable palings stretched away on either hand; and, at the little
station, there were turn-stiles, through which pilgrims passed within.
Most people pay money to obtain admittance; but I was met by a very
affable young man from Dartmouth, whose business it was to welcome invited
visitors, and by him I was steered officially through unopposing gates. I
liked this young man for his cheerful clothes and smiling countenance; but
I was rather appalled by the agglomeration of ram-shackle cottages through
which we passed on our way to the hotel.

I say "the hotel," for the Chautauqua Settlement contains but one such
institution. It carries the classic name of Athenaeum; but the first view
of it occasioned in my sensitive constitution a sinking of the heart. The
edifice dates from the early-gingerbread period of architecture. It
culminates in a horrifying cupola, and is colored a discountenancing
brown. The first glimpse of it reminded me of the poems of A.H. Clough,
whose chief merit was to die and to offer thereby an occasion for a grave
and twilit elegy by Matthew Arnold. Clough's life-work was a continual
asking of the question, "Life being unbearable, why should I not
die?"--while echo, that commonplace and sapient commentator, mildly
answered, "Why?": and this was precisely the impression that I gathered
from my initial vista of the Athenaeum between trees.

On entering the hotel I was greeted over the desk (with what might be
defined as a left-handed smile) by one of the leading students of the
university with which I am associated as a teacher. He called out,
"Front!" in the manner of an amateur who is amiably aping the
professional, and assigned me to a scarcely comfortable room.

My first voluntary act in the Chautauqua Community was to take a swim. But
the water was tepid, and brown, and tasteless, and unbuoyant; and I felt,
rather oddly, as if I were swimming in a gigantic cup of tea. From this
initial experience I proceeded, somewhat precipitately, to induce an
analogy; and it seemed to me, at the time, as if I had forsaken the roar
and tumble of the hoarse, tumultuous world, for the inland disassociated
peace of an unaware and loitering backwater.

With hair still wet and still dishevelled, I was met by the Secretary of
Instruction,--a man (as I discovered later) of wise and humorous
perceptions. By him I was informed that, in an hour or so, I was to
lecture, in the Hall of Philosophy, on (if I remember rightly) Edgar Allan
Poe. I combed my hair, and tried to care for Poe, and made my way to the
Hall of Philosophy. This turned out to be a Greek temple divested of its
walls. An oaken roof, with pediments, was supported by Doric columns; and
under the enlarged umbrella thus devised, about a thousand people were
congregated to greet the new and unknown lecturer.

I honestly believe that that was the worst lecture I have ever imposed
upon a suffering audience. I had lain awake all night, in an upper berth,
on the hottest day of the year; I had found my swim in inland water
unrefreshing; and, at the moment, I really cared no more for Edgar Allan
Poe than I usually care for the sculptures of Bernini, the paintings of
Bouguereau, or the base-ball playing of the St. Louis "Browns." This
feeling was, of course, unfair to Poe, who is (with all his emptiness of
content) an admirable artist; but I was tired at the time. It pained me
exceedingly to listen, for an hour, to my own dull and unilluminated
lecture. And yet (and here is the pathetic point that touched me deeply) I
perceived gradually that the audience was listening not only attentively
but eagerly. Those people really wanted to hear whatever the lecturer
should say: and I wandered back to the depressing hotel with bowed head,
actuated by a new resolve to tell them something worthy on the morrow.

That afternoon and evening I strolled about the summer settlement of
Chautauqua; and (in view of my subsequent shift of attitude) I do not mind
confessing that this first aspect of the community depressed me to a
perilous melancholy. I beheld a landscape that reminded me of Wordsworth's
Windermere, except that the lake was broader and the hills less high,
deflowered and defamed by the huddled houses of the Chautauqua settlers.
The lake was lovely; and, with this supreme adjective, I forbear from
further effort at description. Upon the southern shore, a natural grove of
noble and venerable trees had been invaded by a crowded horror of
discomfortable tenements, thrown up by carpenters with a taste for
machine-made architectural details, and colored a sickly green, an acid
yellow, or an angry brown. The Chautauqua Settlement, which is surrounded
by a fence of palings, covers only two or three square miles of territory;
and, in the months of July and August, between fifteen and twenty thousand
people are crowded into this constricted area. Hence a horror of unsightly
dormitories, spawning unpredictable inhabitants upon the ambling, muddy

There have been, in the history of this Assembly, a few salutary
fires,--as a result of which new buildings have been erected which are
comparatively easy on the eyes. The Hall of Philosophy is really
beautiful, and is nobly seated among memorable trees at the summit of a
little hill. The Aula Christi tried to be beautiful, and failed; but at
least the good intention is apparent. The Amphitheatre (which seats six or
seven thousand auditors) is admirably adapted to its uses; and some of the
more recent business buildings, like the Post Office, are inoffensive to
the unexacting observer. A wooded peninsula, which is pleasantly laid out
as a park, projects into the lake; and, at the point of this, has lately
been erected a _campanile_ which is admirable in both color and
proportion. Indeed, when a fanfaronnade of sunset is blown wide behind it,
you suffer a sudden tinge of homesickness for Venice or Ravenna. It is
good enough for that. But beside it is a helter-skelter wooden edifice
which reminds you of Surf Avenue at Coney Island. Indeed, the Settlement
as a whole exhibits still an overwhelmment of the unaesthetic, and appalls
the eye of the new-comer from a more considerative world.

On the way back from the lovely _campanile_ to the hotel, I stumbled over
a scattering of artificial hillocks surrounding two mud-puddles connected
by a gutter. This monstrosity turned out to be a relief-map of Palestine.
Little children, with uncultivated voices, shouted at each other as they
lightly leaped from Jerusalem to Jericho; and waste-paper soaked itself to
dingy brown in the insanitary Sea of Galilee.--Then I encountered a wooden
edifice with castellated towers and machicolated battlements, which called
itself (with a large label) the Men's Club; and from this I fled, with
almost a sense of relief, to the hotel itself, now sprawling low and dark
beneath its Boston-brown-bread cupola.

Thus my first impression of Chautauqua was one of melancholy and
resentment. But, in the subsequent few days, this emotion was altered to
one of impressible satiric mirth; and, subsequently still, it was changed
again to an emotion of wondering and humble admiration. I had been assured
at the outset, by one who had already tried it, that, if I stayed long
enough, I should end up by liking Chautauqua; and this is precisely what
happened to me before a week was out.

But meanwhile I laughed very hard for three days. The thing that made me
laugh most was the unexpected experience of enduring the discomfiture of
fame. Chautauqua is a constricted community; and any one who lectures
there becomes, by that very fact, a famous person in this little backwater
of the world, until he is supplanted (for fame is as fickle as a
ballet-dancer) by the next new-comer to the platform. The Chautauqua Press
publishes a daily paper, a weekly review, a monthly magazine and a
quarterly; and these publications report your lectures, tell the story of
your life, comment upon your views of this and that, advertise your books,
and print your picture. Everybody knows you by sight, and stops you in the
street to ask you questions. Thus, on your way to the Post Office, you are
intercepted by some kindly soul who says: "I am Miss Terwilliger, from
Montgomery, Alabama; and do you think that Bernard Shaw is really an
immoral writer?" or, "I am Mrs. Winterbottom, of Muncie, Indiana; and
where do you think I had better send my boy to school? He is rather a
backward boy for his age--he was ten last April--but I really think that
if, etc."

Then, when you return to the hotel, you observe that everybody is rocking
vigorously on the veranda, and reading one of your books. This pleases you
a little; for, though an actor may look his audience in the eyes, an
author is seldom privileged to see his readers face to face. Indeed, he
often wonders if anybody ever reads his writings, because he knows that
his best friends never do. But very soon this tender sentiment is
disrupted. There comes a sudden resurrection of the rocking-chair brigade,
a rush of readers with uplifted fountain-pens, and a general request for
the author's autograph upon the flyleaf of his volume. All of this is
rather flattering; but afterward these gracious and well-meaning people
begin to comment on your lectures, and tell you that you have made them
see a great light. And then you find yourself embarrassed.

It is rather embarrassing to be embarrassed.

One enthusiastic lady, having told me her name and her address, assaulted
me with the following commentary:--"I heard you lecture on Stevenson the
other day; and ever since then I have been thinking how very much like
Stevenson you are. And today I heard you lecture on Walt Whitman: and all
afternoon I have been thinking how very much like Whitman you are. And
that is rather puzzling--isn't it?--because Stevenson and Whitman weren't
at all like each other,--were they?"

I smiled, and told the lady the simple truth; but I do not think she
understood me. "Ah, madam," I said, "wait until you hear me lecture about

For (and now I am freely giving the whole game away) the secret of the art
of lecturing is merely this:--on your way to the rostrum you contrive to
fling yourself into complete sympathy with the man you are to talk about,
so that, when you come to speak, you will give utterance to _his_ message,
in terms that are suggestive of _his_ style. You must guard yourself from
ever attempting to talk about anybody whom you have not (at some time or
other) loved; and, at the moment, you should, for sheer affection, abandon
your own personality in favor of his, so that you may become, as nearly as
possible, the person whom it is your business to represent. Naturally, if
you have any ear at all, your sentences will tend to fall into the rhythm
of his style; and if you have any temperament (whatever that may be) your
imagined mood will diffuse an ineluctable aroma of the author's

This at least, is my own theory of lecturing; and, in the instance of my
talk on Hawthorne, I seem to have carried it out successfully in practice.
I must have attained a tone of sombre gray, and seemed for the moment a
meditative Puritan under a shadowy and steepled hat; for, at the close of
the lecture, a silvery-haired and sweet-faced woman asked me if I wouldn't
be so kind as to lead the devotional service in the Baptist House that
evening. I found myself abashed. But a previous engagement saved me; and I
was able to retire, not without honor, though with some discomfiture.

This previous engagement was a steamboat ride upon the lake. When you want
to give a sure-enough party at Chautauqua, you charter a steamboat and
escape from the enclosure, having seduced a sufficient number of other
people to come along and sing. On this particular evening, the party
consisted of the Chautauqua School of Expression,--a bevy of about thirty
young women who were having their speaking voices cultivated by an admired
friend of mine who is one of the best readers in America; and they sang
with real spirit, so soon as we had churned our way beyond remembrance of
(I mean no disrespect) the Baptist House. But this boat-ride had a curious
effect on the four or five male members of the party. We touched at a
barbarous and outrageous settlement, named (if I remember rightly) Bemus
Point; and hardly had the boat been docked before there ensued a
hundred-yard dash for a pair of swinging doors behind which dazzled lights
splashed gaudily on soapy mirrors. I did not really desire a drink at the
time; but I took two, and the other men did likewise. I understood at once
(for I must always philosophize a little) why excessive drinking is
induced in prohibition states. Tell me that I may not laugh, and I wish at
once to laugh my head off,--though I am at heart a holy person who loves
Keats. This incongruous emotion must have been felt, under this or that
influence of external inhibition, by everyone who is alive enough to like
swimming, and Dante, and Weber and Fields, and Filipino Lippi, and the
view of the valley underneath the sacred stones of Delphi.

Within the enclosure of Chautauqua one does not drink at all; and I infer
that this regulation is well-advised. I base this inference upon my
gradual discovery that all the regulations of this well-conducted
Institution have been fashioned sanely to contribute to the greatest good
of the greatest number. That is my final, critical opinion. But how we did
dash for the swinging doors at Bemus Point!--we four or five
simple-natured human beings who were not, in any considerable sense,
drinking men at all.

Then the congregated School of Expression tripped ashore with nimble
ankles; and there ensued a general dance at a pavilion where a tired boy
maltreated a more tired piano, and one paid a dime before, or after,
dancing. One does not dance at Chautauqua, even on moon-silvery summer
evenings:--and again the regulation is right, because the serious-minded
members of the community must have time to read the books of those who
lecture there.

And this brings me to a consideration of the Chautauqua Sunday. On this
day the gates are closed, and neither ingress nor egress is permitted.
Once more I must admit that the regulation has been sensibly devised. If
admittance were allowed on Sunday, the grounds would be overrun by
picnickers from Buffalo, who would cast the shells of hard-boiled eggs
into the inviting Sea of Galilee; and unless the officers are willing to
let anybody in, they can devise no practicable way of letting anybody out.
Besides, the people who are in already like to rest and meditate. But
alas! (and at this point I think that I begin to disapprove) the row-boats
and canoes are tied up at the dock, the tennis-courts are emptied, and the
simple exercise of swimming is forbidden. This desuetude of natural and
smiling recreation on a day intended for surcease of labor struck me (for
I am in part an ancient Greek, in part a mediaeval Florentine) as strangely
irreligious. All day the organ rumbles in the Amphitheatre (and of this I
approved, because I love the way in which an organ shakes you into
sanctity), and many meetings are held in various sectarian houses, the
mood of which is doubtless reverent--though all the while the rippling
water beckons to the high and dry canoes, and a gathering of many-tinted
clouds is summoned in the windy west to tingle with Olympian laughter and
Universal song. How much more wisely (if I may talk in Greek terms for the
moment) the gods take Sunday, than their followers on this forgetful

But we must change the mood if I am to speak again of what amused me in
the pagan days of my initiation at Chautauqua. Life, for instance, at the
ginger-bread hotel amused me oddly. To one who lives in a metropolis
throughout the working months, the map of eating at Chautauqua seems
incongruous. Dinner is served in the middle of the day, at an hour when
one is hardly encouraged to the thought of luncheon; and at six P.M. a
sort of breakfast is set forth, which is denominated _Supper_. This Supper
consists of fruit, followed by buckwheat cakes, followed by meat or eggs;
and to eat one's way through it induces a curious sense of standing on
one's head. After two days I discovered a remedy for this undesired
dizziness. I turned the _menu_ upside down, and ordered a meal in the
reverse order. The Supper itself was a success; but the waitress (who, in
the winter, teaches school in Texas) disapproved of what she deemed my
frivolous proceeding. Her eyes took on an inward look beneath the
pedagogical eye-glasses; and there was a distinct furrowing of her
forehead. Thereafter I did not dare to overturn the _menu_, but ate my way
heroically backward. After all, our prandial prejudices are merely the
result of custom. There is no real reason why stewed prunes should not be
eaten at three A.M.

But this philosophical reflection reminds me that there is no such hour at
Chautauqua. At ten P.M. a carol of sweet chimes is rung from the Italian
_campanile_; and at that hour all good Chautauquans go to bed. If you are
by profession (let us say) a writer, and are accustomed to be alive at
midnight, you will find the witching hours sad. Vainly you will seek
companionship, and will be reduced at last to reading the base-ball
reports in the newspapers of Cleveland, Ohio.

At the Athenaeum you are passed about, from meal to meal, like a one-card
draw at poker. The hotel is haunted by Old Chautauquans, who vie with each
other to receive you with traditional cordiality. The head-waitress steers
you for luncheon (I mean Dinner) to one table, for Supper to another, and
so on around the room from day to day. The process reminds you a little of
the procedure at a progressive euchre party. At each meal you meet a new
company of Old Chautauquans, and are expected to converse: but many
(indeed most) of these people are humanly refreshing, and the experience
is not so wearing as it sounds.

But you must not imagine from all that I have said that the life of the
lecturer at Chautauqua is merely frivolous. Not at all. You get up very
early, and proceed to Higgins Hall, a pleasant little edifice (named after
the late Governor of New York State) set agreeably amid trees upon a
rising knoll of verdure; and there you converse for a time about the
Drama, and for another time about the Novel. In each of these two courses
there were, perhaps, seventy or eighty students,--male and female, elderly
and young. I found them much more eager than the classes I had been
accustomed to in college, and at least as well prepared. They came from
anywhere, and from any previous condition of servitude to the general
cause of learning; but I found them apt, and interested, and alive.

Now and then it appeared that their sense of humor was a little less
fantastic than my own; but I liked them very much, because they were so
earnest and simple and human and (what is Whitman's adjective?) adhesive.

And now I come to the point that converted me finally to Chautauqua. I
found myself, after a few days, liking the people very much. In the
afternoons I talked in the Doric Temple about this man or that,--selected
from my company of well-beloved friends among "the famous nations of the
dead"; and the people came in hundreds and listened reverently--not, I am
very glad to know, because of any trick I have of setting words together,
but because of Stevenson and Whitman and the others, and what they meant
by living steadfast lives amid the hurly-burly of this roaring world, and
steering heroically by their stars. Some elderly matrons among the
listeners brought their knitting with them and toiled with busy hands
throughout the lecture; but they listened none the less attentively, and
reduced me to a mood of humble wonderment.

For I have often wondered (and this is, perhaps, the most intimate of my
confessions) how anybody can endure a lecture,--even a good lecture, for I
am not thinking merely of my own. It is a passive exercise of which I am
myself incapable. I, for one, have always found it very irksome--as
Carlyle has phrased the experience--"to sit as a passive bucket and be
pumped into." I always want to talk back, or rise and remark "But, on the
other hand..."; and, before long, I find myself spiritually itching. This
is, possibly, a reason why I prefer canoeing to listening to sermons. Yet
these admirable Chautauquans submit themselves to this experience hour
after hour, because they earnestly desire to discover some glimmering of
"the best that has been known and thought in the world."

These fifteen or twenty thousand people have assembled for the pursuit of
culture--a pursuit which the Hellenic-minded Matthew Arnold designated as
the noblest in this life. But from this fact (and here the antithetic
formula asserts itself) we must deduce an inference that they feel
themselves to be uncultured. In this inference I found a taste of the
pathetic. I discovered that many of the colonists at Chautauqua were men
and women well along in life who had had no opportunities for early
education. Their children, rising through the generations, had returned
from the state universities of Texas or Ohio or Mississippi, talking of
Browning, and the binominal theorem, and the survival of the fittest, and
the grandeur and decadence of the Romans, and the _entassus_ of Ionic
columns, and the doctrine of _laissez faire_; and now their elders had set
out to endeavor to catch up with them. This discovery touched me with both
reverence and pathos. An attempt at what may be termed, in the technical
jargon of base-ball, a "delayed steal" of culture, seemed to me little
likely to succeed. Culture, like wisdom, cannot be acquired: it cannot be
passed, like a dollar bill, from one who has it to one who has it not. It
must be absorbed, early in life, through birth or breeding, or be gathered
undeliberately through experience. A child of five with a French governess
will ask for his mug of milk with an easier Gallic grace than a man of
eighty who has puzzled out the pronunciation from a text-book. There is,
apparently, no remedy for this. Love the _Faerie Queene_ at twelve, or you
will never really love it at seventy: or so, at least, it seems to me. And
yet the desire to learn, in gray-haired men and women who in their youth
were battling hard for a mere continuance of life itself, and founding
homesteads in a book-less wilderness, moved me to a quick exhilaration.

Most of the people at Chautauqua come either from the south or from the
middle west. They pronounce the English language either without any _r_ at
all, or with such excessive emphasis upon the _r_ as to make up for the
deficiency of their fellow-seekers. In other words, these people are
really American, as opposed to cosmopolitan; and to live among them
is--for a world-wandering adventurer--to learn a lesson in Americanism.
Mr. Roosevelt once stated that Chautauqua is the most American institution
in America; and this statement--like many others of his inspired
platitudes--begins to seem meaningful upon reflection.

At one time or another I have drifted to many different corners of the
world; but my residence at Chautauqua was my only experience of a
democracy. In this community there are no special privileges. If the
President of the Institution had wished to hear me lecture (he never did,
in fact--though we used to play tennis together, at which game he proved
himself easily the better man) he would have been required to come early
and take his chance at getting a front seat; and once, when I ventured to
attend a lecture by one of my colleagues, I found myself seated beside
that very waitress in the Athenaeum who had disapproved of my method of
ordering a meal. All the exercises are open equally to anybody--first
come, first served--and the boy who blacks your boots may turn out to be a
Sophomore at Oberlin. Teachers in Texas high-schools sweep the floors or
shave you, and the raucous newsboy is earning his way toward the
University of Illinois. All this is a little bewildering at first; but in
a day or two you grow to like it.

This free-for-all spirit that permeates Chautauqua reminds me to speak of
the economic conduct of the Institution. The only charge--except in the
case of certain special courses--is for admission to the grounds. The
visitor pays fifty cents for a franchise of one day, and more for periods
of greater length, until the ultimate charge of seven dollars and fifty
cents for a season ticket is attained. On leaving the grounds, he has to
show his ticket; and if it has expired he is taxed according to the term
of his delinquent lingering. Once free of the grounds, he may avail
himself of any of the privileges of the Assembly. Lectures, on an infinite
variety of subjects, are delivered hour after hour; and a bulletin of
these successive lectures is posted publicly and printed in the daily
paper. Every evening an entertainment of some sort is given in the
Amphitheatre, and this is eagerly attended by swarming thousands. The
Institution owns all the land within the bounding palisades. Private
cottages may be erected by individual builders on lots leased for
ninety-nine years; but the Institution owns and operates the only hotel,
and exercises an absolute empery over the issuance of franchises to
necessary tradesmen. The revenue of the corporation is therefore rich; but
all of it is expended in importing the best lecturers that may be
obtained, and in furthering the general good of the general assembly. The
entire system suggests the theoretic observation that an absolute
democracy can be instituted and maintained only by an absolute monarchy.
If all the people are to be free and equal, the government must have
absolute control of all the revenue. Here is, perhaps, a principle for our
presidential candidates to think about.

But I do not wish to terminate this summer conversation on a serious note;
and I must revert, in closing, to some of the recreations at Chautauqua.
The first of these is tea. Every afternoon, from four to five o'clock, the
visitor lightly flits from tea to tea,--making his excuses to one hostess
in order to dash onward to another. This is rather hard upon the health,
because it requires the deglutition of innumerable potions. I have always
maintained that tea is an admirable entity if it be considered merely as a
time of day, but that it is insidious if it be considered as a beverage.
At Chautauqua, tea is not only an hour but a drink; and (though I am a
sympathetic soul) I can only say that those who like it like it. For my
part, I preferred the concoction sold at rustic soda-fountains, which is
known locally as a "Chautauqua highball,"--a ribald term devised by
college men who make up the by-no-means-despicable ball-team. This
beverage is compounded out of unfermented grape-juice and foaming
fizz-water; and, if it be taken absent-mindedly, seems to taste like

But the standard recreation at Chautauqua is the habit of impromptu eating
in the open air. Every one invites you to go upon a picnic. You take a
steamer to some point upon the lake, or take a trolley to a wild and deep
ravine known by the somewhat unpoetic name of the Hog's Back; and then
everybody sits around and eats sandwiches and hard-boiled eggs, and
considers the occasion a debauch. This formality resembles great good
fun,--especially as there are girls who laugh, and play, and threaten to
disconcert you on the morrow when you solemnly arise to lecture on the
Religion of Emerson. But picnic-baskets out of doors are rather hard on
the digestion.

Perhaps I should record also, as a curious experience, that I was required
to appear as one of the guests of honor at a large reception. This meant
that I had to stand in line, with certain other marionettes, and shake
hands with an apparently endless procession of people who were themselves
as bored as were the guests of honor. I determined then and there that I
should never run for President,--not even in response to an irresistible
appeal from the populace. I had never suspected before that there could be
so many hands without the touch of nature in them.  I shook hands
mechanically, chatting all the while with a humorous and human woman who
stood next to me in the line of the attacked--until suddenly I felt the
sensitive and tender grasp of a sure-enough hand, reminding me of friends
and one or two women it has been a holiness to know. My attention was
attracted by the thrill. I turned swiftly--and I looked upon a little bent
old woman who was blind. She had a voice, too, for she spoke to me ...
and,--well, I was very glad that I went to that reception.

And many other matters I remember fondly,--a certain lonely hill at
sunset, whence you looked over wide water to distant dream-enchanted
shores; the urbanity and humor of the wise directors of the Institution;
the manner of many young students who discerned an unadmitted sanctity
beneath the smiling conversations of those summer hours; my own last
lecture, on "The Importance of Enjoying Life"; the people who walked with
me to the station and whom I was sorry to leave; and the oddly-minded
student behind the desk of the hotel; and an old man from Kentucky who
cared about Walt Whitman after I had talked about his ministrations in the
army hospitals; and the trees, and the reverberating organ, and, beneath a
benison of midnight peace, the hushed moon-silvery surface of the lake. It
is, indeed, a memorable experience to have lectured at Chautauqua.


Any one who has traveled much about the country of recent years must have
been impressed by the growing uneasiness of mind among thoughtful men.
Whether in the smoking car, or the hotel corridor, or the college hall,
everywhere, if you meet them off their guard and stripped of the optimism
which we wear as a public convention, you will hear them saying in a kind
of sad amazement, "What is to be the end of it all?" They are alarmed at
the unsettlement of property and the difficulties that harass the man of
moderate means in making provision for the future; they are uneasy over
the breaking up of the old laws of decorum, if not of decency, and over
the unrestrained pursuit of excitement at any cost; they feel vaguely that
in the decay of religion the bases of society have been somehow weakened.
Now, much of this sort of talk is as old as history, and has no special
significance. We are prone to forget that civilization has always been a
_tour de force_, so to speak, a little hard-won area of order and
self-subordination amidst a vast wilderness of anarchy and barbarism that
are with difficulty held in check and are continually threatening to
overrun their bounds. But that is equally no reason for over-confidence.
Civilization is like a ship traversing an untamed sea. It is a more
complex machine in our day, with command of greater forces, and might seem
correspondingly safer than in the era of sails. But fresh catastrophes
have shown that the ancient perils of navigation still confront the
largest vessel, when the crew loses its discipline or the officers neglect
their duty; and the analogy is not without its warning.

Only a year after the sinking of the _Titanic_ I was crossing the ocean,
and it befell by chance that on the anniversary of that disaster we passed
not very far from the spot where the proud ship lay buried beneath the
waves. The evening was calm, and on the lee deck a dance had been hastily
organized to take advantage of the benign weather. Almost alone I stood
for hours at the railing on the windward side, looking out over the
rippling water where the moon had laid upon it a broad street of gold.
Nothing could have been more peaceful; it was as if Nature were smiling
upon earth in sympathy with the strains of music and the sound of laughter
that reached me at intervals from the revelling on the other deck. Yet I
could not put out of my heart an apprehension of some luring treachery in
this scene of beauty--and certainly the world can offer nothing more
wonderfully beautiful than the moon shining from the far East over a
smooth expanse of water. Was it not in such a calm as this that the
unsuspecting vessel, with its gay freight of human lives, had shuddered,
and gone down, forever? I seemed to behold a symbol; and there came into
my mind the words we used to repeat at school, but are, I do not know just
why, a little ashamed of to-day:

  Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
  Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
  Humanity with all its fears,
  With all its hopes of future years,
  Is hanging breathless on thy fate!...

Something like this, perhaps, is the feeling of many men--men by no means
given to morbid gusts of panic--amid a society that laughs overmuch in its
amusement and exults in the very lust of change. Nor is their anxiety
quite the same as that which has always disturbed the reflecting
spectator. At other times the apprehension has been lest the combined
forces of order might not be strong enough to withstand the
ever-threatening inroads of those who envy barbarously and desire
recklessly; whereas today the doubt is whether the natural champions of
order themselves shall be found loyal to their trust, for they seem no
longer to remember clearly the word of command that should unite them in
leadership. Until they can rediscover some common ground of strength and
purpose in the first principles of education and law and property and
religion, we are in danger of falling a prey to the disorganizing and
vulgarizing domination of ambitions which should be the servants and not
the masters of society.

Certainly, in the sphere of education there is a growing belief that some
radical reform is needed; and this dissatisfaction is in itself wholesome.
Boys come into college with no reading and with minds unused to the very
practice of study; and they leave college, too often, in the same state of
nature. There are even those, inside and outside of academic halls, who
protest that our higher institutions of learning simply fail to educate at
all. That is slander; but in sober earnest, you will find few experienced
college professors, apart from those engaged in teaching purely
utilitarian or practical subjects, who are not convinced that the general
relaxation is greater now than it was twenty years ago. It is of
considerable significance that the two student essays which took the
prizes offered by the Harvard _Advocate_ in 1913 were both on this theme.
The first of them posed the question: "How can the leadership of the
intellectual rather than the athletic student be fostered?" and was
virtually a sermon on a text of President Lowell's: "No one in close touch
with American education has failed to notice the lack among the mass of
undergraduates of keen interest in their studies, and the small regard for
scholarly attainment."

Now, the _Advocate_ prizeman has his specific remedy, and President Lowell
has his, and other men propose other systems and restrictions; but the
evil is too deep-seated to be reached by any superficial scheme of honors
or to be charmed away by insinuating appeals. The other day Mr. William F.
McCombs, chairman of the National Committee which engineered a college
president into the White House, gave this advice to our academic youth:
"The college man must forget--or never let it creep into his head--that
he's a highbrow. If it does creep in, he's out of politics." To which one
might reply in Mr. McCombs's own dialect, that unless a man can make
himself a force in politics (or at least in the larger life of the State)
precisely by virtue of being a "highbrow," he had better spend his four
golden years otherwhere than in college. There it is: the destiny of
education is intimately bound up with the question of social leadership,
and unless the college, as it used to be in the days when the religious
hierarchy it created was a real power, can be made once more a breeding
place for a natural aristocracy, it will inevitably degenerate into a
school for mechanical apprentices or into a pleasure resort for the
_jeunesse doree_ (_sc._ the "gold coasters"). We must get back to a common
understanding of the office of education in the construction of society,
and must discriminate among the subjects that may enter into the
curriculum, by their relative value towards this end.

A manifest condition is that education should embrace the means of
discipline, for without discipline the mind will remain inefficient, just
as surely as the muscles of the body, without exercise, will be left
flaccid. That should seem to be a self-evident truth. Now it may be
possible to derive a certain amount of discipline out of any study, but it
is a fact, nevertheless, which cannot be gainsaid, that some studies lend
themselves to this use more readily and effectively than others. You may,
for instance, if by extraordinary luck you get the perfect teacher, make
English literature disciplinary by the hard manipulation of ideas; but in
practice it almost inevitably happens that a course in English literature
either degenerates into the dull memorizing of dates and names or, rising
into the O Altitudo, evaporates in romantic gush over beautiful passages.
This does not mean, of course, that no benefit may be obtained from such a
study, but it does preclude English literature generally from being made
the backbone, so to speak, of a sound curriculum. The same may be said of
French and German. The difficulties of these tongues in themselves, and
the effort required of us to enter into their spirit, imply some degree of
intellectual gymnastics, but scarcely enough for our purpose. Of the
sciences it behooves one to speak circumspectly, and undoubtedly
mathematics and physics, at least, demand such close attention and such
firm reasoning as to render them an essential part of any disciplinary
education. But there are good grounds for being sceptical of the effect of
the non-mathematical sciences on the immature mind. Any one who has spent
a considerable portion of his undergraduate time in a chemical laboratory,
for example, as the present writer has done, and has the means of
comparing the results of such elementary and pottering experimentation
with the mental grip required in the humanistic courses, must feel that
the real training obtained therein was almost negligible. If I may draw
further from my own observation I must say frankly that, after dealing for
a number of years with manuscripts prepared for publication by college
professors of the various faculties, I have been forced to the conclusion
that science, in itself, is likely to leave the mind in a state of
relative imbecility. It is not that the writing of men who got their early
drill too exclusively, or even predominantly, in the sciences lacks the
graces of rhetoric--that would be comparatively a small matter--but such
men in the majority of cases, even when treating subjects within their own
field, show a singular inability to think clearly and consecutively, so
soon as they are freed from the restraint of merely describing the process
of an experiment. On the contrary, the manuscript of a classical scholar,
despite the present dry-rot of philology, almost invariably gives signs of
a habit of orderly and well-governed cerebration.

Here, whatever else may be lacking, is discipline. The sheer difficulty of
Latin and Greek, the highly organized structure of these languages, the
need of scrupulous search to find the nearest equivalents for words that
differ widely in their scope of meaning from their derivatives in any
modern vocabulary, the effort of lifting one's self out of the familiar
rut of ideas into so foreign a world, all these things act as a tonic
exercise to the brain. And it is a demonstrable fact that students of the
classics do actually surpass their unclassical rivals in any field where a
fair test can be made. At Princeton, for instance, Professor West has
shown this superiority by tables of achievements and grades, which he
published in the _Educational Review_ for March, 1913; and a number of
letters from various parts of the country, printed in the _Nation_, tell
the same story in striking fashion. Thus, a letter from Wesleyan
(September 7, 1911) gives statistics to prove that the classical students
in that university outstrip the others in obtaining all sorts of honors,
commonly even honors in the sciences. Another letter (May 8, 1913) shows
that in the first semester in English at the University of Nebraska the
percentage of delinquents among those who entered with four years of Latin
was below 7; among those who had three years of Latin and one or two of a
modern language the percentage rose to 15; two years of Latin and two
years of a modern language, 30 per cent.; one year or less of Latin and
from two to four years of a modern language, 35 per cent. And in the
_Nation_ of April 23, 1914, Prof. Arthur Gordon Webster, the eminent
physicist of Clark University, after speaking of the late B.O. Peirce's
early drill and life-long interest in Greek and Latin, adds these
significant words: "Many of us still believe that such a training makes
the best possible foundation for a scientist." There is reason to think
that this opinion is daily gaining ground among those who are zealous that
the prestige of science should be maintained by men of the best calibre.

The disagreement in this matter would no doubt be less, were it not for an
ambiguity in the meaning of the word "efficient" itself. There is a kind
of efficiency in managing men, and there also is an intellectual
efficiency, properly speaking, which is quite a different faculty. The
former is more likely to be found in the successful engineer or business
man than in the scholar of secluded habits, and because often such men of
affairs received no discipline at college in the classics, the argument
runs that utilitarian studies are as disciplinary as the humanistic. But
efficiency of this kind is not an academic product at all, and is commonly
developed, and should be developed, in the school of the world. It comes
from dealing with men in matters of large physical moment, and may exist
with a mind utterly undisciplined in the stricter sense of the word. We
have had more than one illustrious example in recent years of men capable
of dominating their fellows, let us say in financial transactions, who
yet, in the grasp of first principles and in the analysis of consequences,
have shown themselves to be as inefficient as children.

Probably, however, few men who have had experience in education will deny
the value of discipline to the classics, even though they hold that other
studies, less costly from the utilitarian point of view, are equally
educative in this respect. But it is further of prime importance, even if
such an equality, or approach to equality, were granted, that we should
select one group of studies, and unite in making it the core of the
curriculum for the great mass of undergraduates. It is true in education
as in other matters that strength comes from union, and weakness from
division, and if educated men are to work together for a common end, they
must have a common range of ideas, with a certain solidarity in their way
of looking at things. As matters actually are, the educated man feels
terribly his isolation under the scattering of intellectual pursuits, yet
too often lacks the courage to deny the strange popular fallacy that there
is virtue in sheer variety, and that somehow well-being is to be struck
out from the clashing of miscellaneous interests rather than from
concentration. In one of his annual reports some years ago President
Eliot, of Harvard, observed from the figures of registration that the
majority of students still at that time believed the best form of
education for them was in the old humanistic courses, and _therefore_, he
argued, the other courses should be fostered. There was never perhaps a
more extraordinary syllogism since the _argal_ of Shakespeare's
gravedigger. I quote from memory, and may slightly misrepresent the actual
statement of the influential "educationalist," but the spirit of his
words, as indeed of his practice, is surely as I give it. And the working
of this spirit is one of the main causes of the curious fact that scarcely
any other class of men in social intercourse feel themselves, in their
deeper concerns, more severed one from another than those very college
professors who ought to be united in the battle for educational
leadership. This estrangement is sometimes carried to an extreme almost
ludicrous. I remember once, in a small but advanced college, the
consternation that was awakened when an instructor in philosophy went to a
colleague--both of them now associates in a large university--for
information in a question of biology. "What business has he with such
matters," said the irate biologist; "let him stick to his last, and teach
philosophy--if he can!" That was a polite jest, you will say. Perhaps; but
not entirely. Philosophy is indeed taught in one lecture hall, and biology
in another, but of conscious effort to make of education an harmonious
driving force there is next to nothing. And as the teachers, so are the

Such criticism does not imply that advanced work in any of the branches of
human knowledge should be curtailed; but it does demand that, as a
background to the professional pursuits, there should be a common
intellectual training through which all students should pass, acquiring
thus a single body of ideas and images in which they could always meet as
brother initiates.

We shall, then, make a long step forward when we determine that in the
college, as distinguished from the university, it is better to have the
great mass of men, whatever may be the waste in a few unmalleable minds,
go through the discipline of a single group of studies--with, of course, a
considerable freedom of choice in the outlying field. And it will probably
appear in experience that the only practicable group to select is the
classics, with the accompaniment of philosophy and the mathematical
sciences. Latin and Greek are, at least, as disciplinary as any other
subjects; and if it can be further shown that they possess a specific
power of correction for the more disintegrating tendencies of the age, it
ought to be clear that their value as instruments of education outweighs
the service of certain other studies which may seem to be more immediately

For it will be pretty generally agreed that efficiency of the individual
scholar and unity of the scholarly class are, properly, only the means to
obtain the real end of education, which is social efficiency. The only
way, in fact, to make the discipline demanded by a severe curriculum and
the sacrifice of particular tastes required for unity seem worth the cost,
is to persuade men that the resulting form of education both meets a
present and serious need of society and promises to serve those
individuals who desire to obtain society's fairer honors. As for the
specific need of society at the present day, it is not my purpose to open
this matter now, for the good reason that the editor of THE UNPOPULAR
REVIEW has already permitted me to argue it at length in my article on
_Natural Aristocracy_. Mr. McCombs, speaking for the "practical" man,
declares that there is no place in politics for the intellectual
aristocrat. A good many of us believe that unless the very reverse of this
is true, unless the educated man can somehow, by virtue of his education,
make of himself a governor of the people in the larger sense, and even to
some extent in the narrow political sense, unless the college can produce
a hierarchy of character and intelligence which shall in due measure
perform the office of the discredited oligarchy of birth, we had better
make haste to divert our enormous collegiate endowments into more useful

And here I am glad to find confirmation of my belief in the stalwart old
_Boke Named the Governour_, published by Sir Thomas Elyot in 1531, the
first treatise on education in the English tongue, and still, after all
these years, one of the wisest. It is no waste of time to take account of
the theory held by the humanists when study at Oxford and Cambridge was
shaping itself for its long service in giving to the oligarchic government
of Great Britain whatever elements it possessed of true aristocracy.
Elyot's book is equally a treatise on the education of a gentleman, and on
the ordinance of government; for, as he says elsewhere, he wrote "to
instruct men in such virtues as shall be expedient for them which shall
have authority in a weal public." I quote from various parts of his work
with some abridgment, retaining the quaint spelling of the original, and I
beg the reader not to skip, however long the citation may appear:

    Beholde also the ordre that god hath put generally in al his
    creatures, begynning at the moste inferiour or base, and
    assendynge upwarde; so that in euery thyng is ordre, and without
    ordre may be nothing stable or permanent; and it may nat be called
    ordre, excepte it do contayne in it degrees, high and base,
    accordynge to the merite or estimation of the thyng that is
    ordred. And therfore hit appereth that god gyueth nat to euery man
    like gyftes of grace, or of nature, but to some more, some lesse,
    as it liketh his diuine maiestie. For as moche as understandyng is
    the most excellent gyfte that man can receiue in his creation, it
    is therfore congruent, and accordynge that as one excelleth an
    other in that influence, as therby beinge next to the similitude
    of his maker, so shulde the astate of his persone be auanced in
    degree or place where understandynge may profite. Suche oughte to
    be set in a more highe place than the residue where they may se
    and also be sene; that by the beames of theyr excellent witte,
    shewed throughe the glasse of auctorite, other of inferiour
    understandynge may be directed to the way of vertue and commodious

    Thus I conclude that nobilitie is nat after the vulgare opinion of
    men, but is only the prayse and surname of vertue; whiche the
    lenger it continueth in a name or lignage, the more is nobilitie
    extolled and meruailed at....

    If thou be a gouernour, or haste ouer other soueraygntie, knowe
    thy selfe. Knowe that the name of a soueraigne or ruler without
    actuall gouernaunce is but a shadowe, that gouernaunce standeth
    nat by wordes onely, but principally by acte and example; that by
    example of gouernours men do rise or falle in vertue or vice. Ye
    shall knowe all way your selfe, if for affection or motion ye do
    speke or do nothing unworthy the immortalitie and moste precious
    nature of your soule....

    In semblable maner the inferiour persone or subiecte aught to
    consider, that all be it he in the substaunce of soule and body be
    equall with his superior, yet for als moche as the powars and
    qualities of the soule and body, with the disposition of reason,
    be nat in euery man equall, therfore god ordayned a diuersitie or
    pre-eminence in degrees to be amonge men for the necessary
    derection and preseruation of them in conformitie of lyuinge....

    Where all thynge is commune, there lacketh ordre; and where ordre
    lacketh, there all thynge is odiouse and uncomly.

Such is the goal which the grave Sir Thomas pointed out to the noble youth
of his land at the beginning of England's greatness, and such, within the
bounds of human frailty, has been the ideal even until now which the two
universities have held before them. Naturally the method of training
prescribed in the sixteenth century for the attainment of this goal is
antiquated in some of its details, but it is no exaggeration,
nevertheless, to speak of the _Boke Named the Governour_ as the very Magna
Charta of our education. The scheme of the humanist might be described in
a word as a disciplining of the higher faculty of the imagination to the
end that the student may behold, as it were in one sublime vision, the
whole scale of being in its range from the lowest to the highest under the
divine decree of order and subordination, without losing sight of the
immutable veracity at the heart of all variation, which "is only the
praise and surname of virtue." This was no new vision, nor has it ever
been quite forgotten. It was the whole meaning of religion to Hooker, from
whom it passed into all that is best and least ephemeral in the Anglican
Church. It was the basis, more modestly expressed, of Blackstone's
conception of the British Constitution and of liberty under law. It was
the kernel of Burke's theory of statecraft. It is the inspiration of the
sublimer science, which accepts the hypothesis of evolution as taught by
Darwin and Spencer, yet bows in reverence before the unnamed and
incommensurable force lodged as a mystical purpose within the unfolding
universe. It was the wisdom of that child of Stratford who, building
better than he knew, gave to our literature its deepest and most
persistent note. If anywhere Shakespeare seems to speak from his heart and
to utter his own philosophy, it is in the person of Ulysses in that
strange satire of life as "still wars and lechery" which forms the theme
of _Troilus and Cressida_. Twice in the course of the play Ulysses
moralizes on the causes of human evil. Once it is in an outburst against
the devastations of disorder:

  Take but degree away, untune that string,
  And, hark, what discord follows! each thing meets
  In mere oppugnancy: the bounded waters
  Should lift their bosoms higher than the shores,
  And make a sop of all this solid globe:
  Strength should be lord of imbecility,
  And the rude son should strike his father dead:
  Force should be right; or rather, right and wrong,
  Between whose endless jar justice resides,
  Should lose their names, and so should justice too.
  Then every thing includes itself in power,
  Power into will, will into appetite.

And, in the same spirit, the second tirade of Ulysses is charged with
mockery at the vanity of the present and at man's usurpation of time as
the destroyer instead of the preserver of continuity:

  For time is like a fashionable host
  That slightly shakes his parting guest by the hand,
  And with his arms outstretch'd, as he would fly,
  Grasps in the comer: welcome ever smiles,
  And farewell goes out sighing. O, let not virtue seek
  Remuneration for the thing it was;
  For beauty, wit,
  High birth, vigor of bone, desert in service,
  Love, friendship, charity, are subjects all
  To envious and calumniating time.

To have made this vision of the higher imagination a true part of our
self-knowledge, in such fashion that the soul is purged of envy for what
is distinguished, and we feel ourselves fellows with the preserving,
rather than the destroying, forces of time, is to be raised into the
nobility of the intellect. To hold this knowledge in a mind trained to
fine efficiency and confirmed by faithful comradeship, is to take one's
place with the rightful governors of the people. Nor is there any narrow
or invidious exclusiveness in such an aristocracy, which differs in its
free hospitality from an oligarchy of artificial prescription. The more
its membership is enlarged, the greater is its power, and the more secure
are the privileges of each individual. Yet, if not exclusive, an academic
aristocracy must by its very nature be exceedingly jealous of any
levelling process which would shape education to the needs of the
intellectual proletariat, and so diminish its own ranks. It cannot admit
that, if education is once levelled downwards, the whole body of men will
of themselves gradually raise the level to the higher range; for its creed
declares that elevation must come from leadership rather than from
self-motion of the mass. It will therefore be opposed to any scheme of
studies which relaxes discipline or destroys intellectual solidarity. It
will look with suspicion on any system which turns out half-educated men
with the same diplomas as the fully educated, thinking that such methods
of slurring over differences are likely to do more harm by discouraging
the ambition to attain what is distinguished than good by spreading wide a
thin veneer of culture. In particular it will distrust the present huge
overgrowth of courses in government and sociology, which send men into the
world skilled in the machinery of statecraft and with minds sharpened to
the immediate demands of special groups, but with no genuine training of
the imagination and no understanding of the longer problems of humanity,
with no hold on the past, "amidst so vast a fluctuation of passions and
opinions, to concentre their thoughts, to ballast their conduct, to
preserve them from being blown about by every wind of fashionable
doctrine." It will set itself against any regular subjection of the
"fierce spirit of liberty," which is the breath of distinction and the
very charter of aristocracy, to the sullen spirit of equality, which
proceeds from envy in the baser sort of democracy. It will regard the
character of education and the disposition of the curriculum as a question
of supreme importance; for its motto is always, _abeunt studia in mores_.

Now this aristocratic principle has, so to speak, its everlasting
embodiment in Greek literature, from whence it was taken over into Latin
and transmitted, with much mingling of foreign and even contradictory
ideas, to the modern world. From Homer to the last runnings of the
Hellenic spirit you will find it taught by every kind of precept and
enforced by every kind of example; nor was Shakespeare writing at hazard,
but under the instinctive guidance of genius, when he put his aristocratic
creed into the mouth of the hero who to the end remained for the Greeks
the personification of their peculiar wisdom. In no other poetry of the
world is the law of distinction, as springing from a man's perception of
his place in the great hierarchy of privilege and obligation, from the
lowest human being up to the Olympian gods, so copiously and magnificently
set forth as in Pindar's _Odes of Victory_. And AEschylus was the first
dramatist to see with clear vision the primacy of the intellect in the law
of orderly development, seemingly at variance with the divine immutable
will of Fate, yet finally in mysterious accord with it. When the
philosophers of the later period came to the creation of systematic
ethics, they had only the task of formulating what was already latent in
the poets and historians of their land; and it was the recollection of the
fulness of such instruction in the _Nicomachean Ethics_ and the Platonic
Dialogues, with their echo in the _Officia_ of Cicero, as if in them were
stored up all the treasures of antiquity, that raised our Sir Thomas into
wondering admiration:

    Lorde god, what incomparable swetnesse of wordes and mater shall
    he finde in the saide warkes of Plato and Cicero; wherin is ioyned
    grauitie with dilectation, excellent wysedome with diuine
    eloquence, absolute vertue with pleasure incredible, and euery
    place is so infarced [crowded] with profitable counsaile, ioyned
    with honestie, that those thre bokes be almoste sufficient to make
    a perfecte and excellent gouernour.

There is no need to dwell on this aspect of the classics. He who cares to
follow their full working in this direction, as did our English humanist,
may find it exhibited in Plato's political and ethical scheme of
self-development, or in Aristotle's ideal of the Golden Mean which
combines magnanimity with moderation, and elevation with self-knowledge.
If a single word were used to describe the character and state of life
upheld by Plato and Aristotle, as spokesmen of their people, it would be
_eleutheria_, _liberty_: the freedom to cultivate the higher part of a
man's nature--his intellectual prerogative, his desire of truth, his
refinements of taste--and to hold the baser part of himself in subjection;
the freedom, also, for its own perfection, and indeed for its very
existence, to impose an outer conformity to, or at least respect for, the
laws of this inner government on others who are of themselves ungoverned.
Such liberty is the ground of true distinction; it implies the opposite of
an equalitarianism which reserves its honors and rewards for those who
attain a bastard kind of distinction by the cunning of leadership, without
departing from common standards--the demagogues who rise by flattery. But
it is, on the other hand, by no means dependent on the artificial
distinctions of privilege, and is peculiarly adapted to an age whose
appointed task must be to create a natural aristocracy as a _via media_
between an equalitarian democracy and a prescriptive oligarchy or
plutocracy. It is a notable fact that, as the real hostility to the
classics in the present day arises from an instinctive suspicion of them
as standing in the way of a downward-levelling mediocrity, so, at other
times, they have fallen under displeasure for their veto on a contrary
excess. Thus, in his savage attack on the Commonwealth, to which he gave
the significant title _Behemoth_, Hobbes lists the reading of classical
history among the chief causes of the rebellion. "There were," he says,
"an exceeding great number of men of the better sort, that had been so
educated as that in their youth, having read the books written by famous
men of the ancient Grecian and Roman commonwealths concerning their polity
and great actions, in which books the popular government was extolled by
that glorious name of liberty, and monarchy disgraced by the name of
tyranny, they became thereby in love with their forms of government; and
out of these men were chosen the greatest part of the House of Commons; or
if they were not the greatest part, yet by advantage of their eloquence
were always able to sway the rest." To this charge Hobbes returns again
and again, even declaring that "the universities have been to this nation
as the Wooden Horse was to the Trojans." And the uncompromising monarchist
of the _Leviathan_, himself a classicist of no mean attainments, as may be
known by his translation of Thucydides, was not deceived in his
accusation. The tyrannicides of Athens and Rome, the Aristogeitons and
Brutuses and others, were the heroes by whose example the leaders of the
French Revolution (rightly, so far as they did not fall into the opposite,
equalitarian extreme) were continually justifying their acts:

  There Brutus starts and stares by midnight taper,
  Who all the day enacts--a woollen-draper.

And again, in the years of the Risorgimento, more than one of the
champions of Italian liberty went to death with those great names on their

So runs the law of order and right subordination. But if the classics
offer the best service to education by inculcating an aristocracy of
intellectual distinction, they are equally effective in enforcing the
similar lesson of time. It is a true saying of our ancient humanist that
"the longer it continueth in a name or lineage, the more is nobility
extolled and marvelled at." It is true because in this way our imagination
is working with the great conservative law of growth. Whatever may be in
theory our democratic distaste for the insignia of birth, we cannot get
away from the fact that there is a certain honor of inheritance, and that
we instinctively pay homage to one who represents a noble name. There is
nothing really illogical in this: for, as an English statesman has put it,
"the past is one of the elements of our power." He is the wise democrat
who, with no opposition to such a decree of Nature, endeavors to control
its operation by expecting noble service where the memory of nobility
abides. When last year Oxford bestowed its highest honor on an American,
distinguished not only for his own public acts but for the great tradition
embodied in his name, the Orator of the University did not omit this
legitimate appeal to the imagination, singularly appropriate in its
academic Latin:

    ... Statim succurrit animo antiqua illa Romae condicio, cum non
    tam propter singulos cives quam propter singulas gentes nomen
    Romanum floreret. Cum enim civis alicujus et avum et proavum
    principes civitatis esse creatos, cum patrem legationis munus apud
    aulam Britannicam summa cum laude esse exsecutum cognovimus; cum
    denique ipsum per totum bellum stipendia equo meritum, summa
    pericula "Pulcra pro Libertate" ausum,... Romanae alicujus
    gentis--Brutorum vel Deciorum--annales evolvere videmur, qui
    testimonium adhibent "fortes creari fortibus," et majorum exemplis
    et imaginibus nepotes ad virtutem accendi.

Is there any man so dull of soul as not to be stirred by that enumeration
of civic services zealously inherited; or is there any one so envious of
the past as not to believe that such memories should be honored in the
present as an incentive to noble emulation?

Well, we cannot all of us count Presidents and Ambassadors among our
ancestors, but we can, if we will, in the genealogy of the inner life
enroll ourselves among the adopted sons of a family in comparison with
which the Bruti and Decii of old and the Adamses of to-day are veritable
_new men_. We can see what defence against the meaner depredations of the
world may be drawn from the pride of birth, when, as it sometimes happens,
the obligation of a great past is kept as a contract with the present;
shall we forget to measure the enlargement and elevation of mind which
ought to come to a man who has made himself the heir of the ancient Lords
of Wisdom? "To one small people," as Sir Henry Maine has said, in words
often quoted, "it was given to create the principle of Progress. That
people was the Greek. Except the blind forces of Nature, nothing moves in
this world which is not Greek in its origin." That is a hard saying, but
scarcely exaggerated. Examine the records of our art and our science, our
philosophy and the enduring element of our faith, our statecraft and our
notion of liberty, and you will find that they all go back for their
inspiration to that one small people, and strike their roots into the soil
of Greece. What we have added, it is well to know; but he is the
aristocrat of the mind who can display a diploma from the schools of the
Academy and the Lyceum, and from the Theatre of Dionysus. What tradition
of ancestral achievement in the Senate or on the field of battle shall
broaden a man's outlook and elevate his will equally with the
consciousness that his way of thinking and feeling has come down to him by
so long and honorable a descent, or shall so confirm him in his better
judgment against the ephemeral and vulgarizing solicitations of the hour?
Other men are creatures of the visible moment; he is a citizen of the past
and of the future. And such a charter of citizenship it is the first duty
of the college to provide.

I have limited myself in these pages to a discussion of what may be called
the public side of education, considering the classics in their power to
mould character and foster sound leadership in a society much given to
drifting. Of the inexhaustible joy and consolation they afford to the
individual, only he can have full knowledge who has made the writers of
Greece and Rome his friends and counsellors through many vicissitudes of
life. It is related of Sainte-Beuve, who, according to Renan, read
everything and remembered everything, that one could observe a peculiar
serenity on his face whenever he came down from his study after reading a
book of Homer. The cost of learning the language of Homer is not small;
but so are all fair things difficult, as the Greek proverb runs, and the
reward in this case is precious beyond estimation.

Nor need we forget another proverb from Greece, with its spirit of
"accommodation"--that the half is sometimes greater than the whole. Even a
moderate acquaintance with the language, helped out by good translations
(especially in such form as the Loeb Classics are now offering, with the
original and the English on opposite pages), will go a surprising length
towards keeping a man, amid the exactions of a professional or otherwise
busy life, in possession of the heritage to which our age has grown so
perilously indifferent.


A good many good judges find the world more out of joint, and moving with
a more threatening rattling, than at any previous time since the French
Revolution, and think that this is largely because the machine has lost
too much of that regulation it used to get from the religions. Much of the
regulation came from an interest in things wider than those directly
revealed by sense.

Possibly a revival of such an interest may be promised by the recent
indications of a range of our forces, both physical and psychic, far wider
than previous experience has indicated. This leads us to invite attention
to some unusual psychic phenomena evinced by persons of exceptional
sensibilities not yet as well understood, or even as carefully
investigated, as perhaps they deserve to be. The physical phenomena are
outside of our present purpose.

There are hundreds of well authenticated reports of super-usual visions.
The vast majority of them, however, were experienced when the percipients
were in bed, but believed themselves awake. But almost everybody has often
believed himself awake in bed, when he was only dreaming. Hence the
probability is overwhelming that most of these super-usual experiences
were had in dreams.

But it is certain that not all were, at least in dreams as ordinarily
understood; but there seems to be a waking dream state. Foster's visions
virtually all came while he was awake, and they were generally at once
described by him as if he were describing a landscape or a play. At times
he very closely identified himself with some personality of his visions,
and acted out the personality, just as Mrs. Piper has habitually done. The
following is an approximate instance, quoted by Bartlett (_The Salem
Seer_, p. 51 f.):

    Says a writer in the New York _World_, Dec. 27, 1885:

    ... While we were talking one night, Foster and I, there came a
    knock at the door. Bartlett arose and opened it, disclosing as he
    did so two young men plainly dressed, of marked provincial
    aspect.... I saw at once that they were clients, and arose to go.
    Foster restrained me.

    "Sit down," he said. "I'll try and get rid of them, for I'm not in
    the humor to be disturbed...."

    Foster hinted that he had no particular inclination to gratify
    them then and there, but they protested that they had come some
    distance, and, with a characteristically good-natured smile, he
    gave in....

    Then follows an account of a fairly good seance--taps on the
    marble table, reading pellets, describing persons, etc., until I
    thought Foster was tired of the interview and was feigning sleep
    to end it. All of a sudden he sprang to his feet with such an
    expression of horror and consternation as an actor playing Macbeth
    would have given a good deal to imitate. His eyes glared, his
    breast heaved, his hands clenched....

    "Why did you come here?" cried Foster, in a wail that seemed to
    come from the bottom of his soul. "Why do you come here to torment
    me with such a sight? Oh, God! It's horrible! It's horrible!... It
    is your father I see!... He died fearfully! He died fearfully! He
    was in Texas--on a horse--with cattle. He was alone. It is the
    prairies! Alone! The horse fell! He was under it! His thigh was
    broken--horribly broken! The horse ran away and left him! He lay
    there stunned! Then he came to his senses! Oh! his thigh was
    dreadful! Such agony! My God! Such agony!"

    Foster fairly screamed at this. The younger of the men ... broke
    into violent sobs. His companion wept, too, and the pair of them
    clasped hands. Bartlett looked on concerned. As for me, I was

    "He was four days dying--four days dying--of starvation and
    thirst," Foster went on, as if deciphering some terrible
    hieroglyphs written on the air. "His thigh swelled to the size of
    his body. Clouds of flies settled on him--flies and vermin--and he
    chewed his own arm and drank his own blood. He died mad. And my
    God! he crawled three miles in those four days! Man! Man! that's
    how your father died!"

    So saying, with a great sob, Foster dropped into his chair, his
    cheeks purple, and tears running down them in rivers. The younger
    man ... burst into a wild cry of grief and sank upon the neck of
    his friend. He, too, was sobbing as if his own heart would break.
    Bartlett stood over Foster wiping his forehead with a

    "It's true," said the younger man's friend; "his father was a
    stock-raiser in Texas, and after he had been missing from his
    drove for over a week, they found him dead and swollen with his
    leg broken. They tracked him a good distance from where he must
    have fallen. But nobody ever heard till now how he died." ...

Now it is hardly to be supposed that the young visitor could ever have had
this scene in his mind as vividly as Foster had. In that case where and
how did Foster get the vividness and emotion? How do we get them in
dreams? He dreamed while he was awake.

As Bartlett quotes this, and as it declares him to have been present, he
of course attests it by quoting it. So in each of Bartlett's quoted cases,
the original witness is the reporter in the newspaper, and Bartlett, who
was present (he was Foster's traveling companion and business agent) thus
confirms it. We know Mr. Bartlett personally, and have thorough confidence
in his sanity and sincerity. We have also been at the pains to learn that
he commands the confidence and respect of his fellow townsmen in Tolland,
Connecticut, where he is passing a green old age. Moreover, he does not
interpret these phenomena by "spiritism."

We also had a sitting with Foster, in which he undoubtedly showed abundant
telepathy, and satisfied us that he was fundamentally honest, though not
always discriminating between his involuntary impressions, and his natural
impulses to help out their coherence and interest.

       *       *       *       *       *

Those who explain these things by denying their existence, were at least
excusable thirty, or even twenty, years ago, but since the carefully
sifted and authenticated and recorded evidence of recent years, especially
that gathered by the Society for Psychical Research, the makers of such
explanations simply put themselves in the category of those who, in
Schopenhauer's day, denied the telopsis which is now quite generally
recognized. He said their attitude should not be called skeptical, but
merely ignorant. This brings to mind an excellent very practical friend
who read the first number of this REVIEW, and praised it, but said: "Don't
fool any more with Psychical Research and Simplified Spelling." We
refrained from saying that we had not known that he had ever studied
either, and we would not say it here if we were not confident that his
aversion from the subject will prevent his reading this.

To return to the manifestations: here are some other cases where Foster
identified himself with a personality of his vision. (Bartlett, _op.
cit._, 93.)

    From Sacramento _Record_, December 8, 1873:

    Foster at one time seized A.'s hand, explaining, "God bless you,
    my dear boy, my son. I am thankful I at last may speak to you. I
    want you to know I am your father, who loved you in life and loves
    you still. I am near to you; a thin veil alone separates us.
    Good-by. I am your father, Abijah A----"

    "Good heavens!" exclaimed A----, "that was my father's name, his
    tone, his manner, his action."

    "And," said Foster, "it was a good influence; he was a man of
    large veneration."

The above indicates what we will provisionally call Possession. But it is
not possession to the extent of complete expulsion of the original
consciousness, as in the trances of Home, Moses, and Mrs. Piper.

And which is the following? (Bartlett, _op. cit._, 103):

    [Letter to editor, written Nov. 30, 1874]

    New York _Daily Graphic_: ... He told me he saw the spirit of an
    old woman close to me, describing most perfectly my grandmother,
    and repeating: "Resodeda, Resodeda is here; she kisses her
    grandson." Arising from his chair, Foster embraced and kissed me
    in the same peculiar way as my grandmother did when alive.

But here the Possession seems complete (Bartlett, _op. cit._, 140). From
the Melbourne _Daily Age_:

    Mr. Foster ... in answer to the question, What he died of?
    suddenly interrupted, "Stay, this spirit will enter and possess
    me," and instantaneously his whole body was seized with quivering
    convulsions, the eyes were introverted, the face swelled, and the
    mouth and hands were spasmodically agitated. Another change, and
    there sat before me the counterpart of the figure of my departed
    friend, stricken down with complete paralysis, just as he was on
    his death-bed. The transformation was so life-like, if I may use
    the expression, that I fancied I could detect the very features
    and physiognomical changes that passed across the visage of my
    dying friend. The kind of paralysis was exactly represented, with
    the palsied hand extended to me to shake, as in the case of the
    original. Mr. Foster recovered himself when I touched it, and he
    said in reply to one of my companions that he had completely lost
    his own identity during the fit, and felt like waves of water
    flowing all over his body, from the crown downwards.

Now for some tentative explanation of these rather unusual proceedings. It
is generally known that a hypnotized person will imagine things and do
things willed by the hypnotizer, that the sensibility of persons to
hypnotism varies, and that persons frequently hypnotized become
increasingly susceptible to the influence.

Now what is ordinarily called thought transference has all these symptoms,
and the combined indications seem to be that persons who readily
experience thought-transference are specially susceptible to hypnotic
influence, and get the transferred thought from almost anybody, just as
the recognized hypnotic subject gets it from his hypnotizer; and that
persons of excessive sensibility, like Foster, Home, Mrs. Holland, Mrs.
Piper and mediums generally--the genuine ones,--simply get their
impressions hypnotically from their sitters.

But this explanation (?) by no means covers the whole situation. In the
first place, it does not cover the vividness and the emotional content
often displayed by the sensitive. The sitter is very seldom conscious of
anything approaching it. It comes nearer to, in fact almost seems
identical with, the frequent vividness and intensity of dreams. But where
do dreams come from, whether in sleep, or in a waking "dream state" like
that of Foster and many other sensitives? They don't come from any
assignable "sitter." This present scribe dreams architecture and
bric-a-brac finer than any he ever saw, or than any ever made. Yet he is
no architect, or artist of any kind. Where does it all come from?

Dreams, moreover, are filled with memories of forgotten things. Where do
they come from? Dreams, too, are by no means devoid of truths not
previously known to the dreamer, or, it would sometimes seem, to anybody
else. Where do they come from?

Du Prel and his school say they come from a "subliminal self," and Myers
picks up the term and spreads it through Anglo-Saxondom. But those queer
dreams frequently include persons who oppose the self--argue with it, and
even down it, sometimes very much for its information, regeneration and
increased stability. That does not seem like a house divided against
itself; such an one, we have on very high authority, is apt to fall.
James, cornered by his studies in Psychical Research, was inclined to
posit a "cosmic reservoir" of all thoughts and feelings that ever existed,
and of potentialities of all the thoughts and feelings that are ever going
to exist; and under various designations, this cosmic reservoir or,--it
seems a better metaphor--the cosmic soul filling it, and dribbling into
our little souls,--is a guess of virtually all the philosophers from James
back to Plato, and farther still--into the mists.

Moreover this guess is powerfully backed up by another guess: men's
speculations have been reaching back for the beginning of mind, until they
recognize that a consistent doctrine of evolution finds no beginning, and
demands mind as a constituent of the star-dust, and, when it really comes
down to the scratch, is unable to imagine matter unassociated with mind.
This is admirably expressed by James (Psychology I, 140):

    If evolution is to work smoothly, consciousness in some shape must
    have been present at the very origin of things. Accordingly we
    find that the more clear-sighted evolutionary philosophers are
    beginning to posit it there. Each atom of the nebula, they
    suppose, must have had an aboriginal atom of consciousness linked
    with it; and, just as the material atoms have formed bodies and
    brains by massing themselves together, so the mental atoms, by an
    analogous process of aggregation, have fused into those larger
    consciousnesses which we know in ourselves and suppose to exist in
    our fellow-animals.

That mind is not limited to this connection with matter, we see proved _a
posteriori_ every day by the appearance from _some_ source, it may be only
from the memories of survivors, of minds whose accompanying matter is long
since dissipated.

Moreover, in life, the matter is changing constantly and
entirely--"renewed once in seven years." Yet not only does the "plan," the
"idea," of the material man remain the same, but his mind grows for forty,
sixty, sometimes eighty years, while the body begins to go down hill at

Moreover, we never see the sum of matter in the universe increasing, and
we do see the sum of mind increasing every time two old thoughts coalesce
into a new one, or even every time matter assumes a new form before a
perceiving intelligence, not to speak of every time Mr. Bryan or Mr.
Roosevelt opens his mouth. We cite these last as the extreme examples of
increase--in quantity. We see another sort of increase every time Lord
Bryce takes up his pen--the mental treasures of the world are added
to--the contents of the cosmic reservoir worthily increased--the cosmic
soul greater and more significant than before.

Parts of it farther and farther removed in time and space seem to be
manifesting themselves through the sensitives every day: so the evidence
is increasing that none of it has ever been extinguished. The evidence
that any part has been, is merely the evidence that it has stopped flowing
through each man when he dies. But there are pretty strong indications
that it has welled up occasionally through another man, and yet with the
original individuality apparently even stronger than it was in the first
man--strong enough to make an alien body--Foster's, in the instances
quoted, look and act like the original twin body.

Yet while the cosmic soul idea seems very illuminating, and even
stimulating, as far as it goes, it soon lands us in the swamp of paradox
surrounding all our knowledge. How reconcile it with our
individuality--the individuality as dear as life itself--virtually
identical with life itself? Well, we can't reconcile them, at least just
yet. But we can pull our feet up from the swamp, and make a step that may
be towards a reconciliation. Each of our brains is a network of channels
through which the cosmic soul flows; and there are no two brains
alike--hence our individuality.

But those brains perish. Must individuality be conceded at the cost of our
mental continuity? Perhaps not. Grant even the original mind-atom to be a
constituent, or inseparable companion, of an original matter-atom
(wouldn't it be more up to date to say vibration in each case?), mind, as
we have already tried to demonstrate, is not limited, as matter seems to
be, to those primitive atoms.

       *       *       *       *       *

The vague but almost unescapable notion of the cosmic soul also opens up
some hint of an explanation of hypnotism, including, of course, thought
transference. These vague hints or gleams on the borderland of our
knowledge are of course something like what must be such hints of what we
know as color, as go through the pigment spots on the surface of one of
the lower creatures. Such as our limits are, we can express them only in
metaphors. But for that matter all of our language beyond a few material
conceptions, is metaphor from them. Well, on the hypothesis (or facing the
fact, if you prefer) of the cosmic soul, telepathy, hypnotism and all that
sort of thing at once affiliates itself with all our easy conceptions of
interflow--in fluids, gases, sounds, colors, magnetism, electricity, etc.
It's all a vague groping, but there seems something there which, as we
evolve farther, we may get clearer impressions of.

Well, to return to our sheep. Foster didn't get the clearness and
intensity of his visions from the comparatively indistinct and placid
impressions in his sitters' minds. There must be something more than
hypnotism from the sitter.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now here is a tougher case which opens a new element of the problem. It is
from _The Autobiography of a Journalist_, by W.J. Stillman, Boston, 1901,
Vol. I, pp. 192-4: Not many of our older readers will require any
introduction of Stillman. For the younger ones, we may say that he was a
very eminent art-critic; spent most of the latter half of his life abroad,
being part of the time our consul at Crete; wrote a history of the Cretan
Rebellion, and other books; and was a regular correspondent of _The
Nation_, and of _The London Times_. We never knew his veracity questioned.

Here is the story:

A "spiritual medium," Miss A. was "under the control" of Stillman's dead
cousin "Harvey." The "possession" seems to have been throughout free from
trance. Stillman says:

    I asked Harvey if he had seen old Turner, the landscape painter,
    since his death, which had taken place not very long before. The
    reply was "Yes," and I then asked what he was doing, the reply
    being a pantomime of painting. I then asked if Harvey could bring
    Turner there, to which the reply was, "I do not know; I will go
    and see," upon which Miss A. said, "This influence [Harvey's.
    Editor] is going away--it is gone"; and after a short pause added,
    "There is another influence coming, in that direction," pointing
    over her left shoulder. "I don't like it," and she shuddered
    slightly, but presently sat up in her chair with a most
    extraordinary personation of the old painter in manner, in the
    look out from under the brow, and the pose of the head. It was as
    if the ghost of Turner, as I had seen him at Griffiths's, sat in
    the chair, and it made my flesh creep to the very tips of my
    fingers, as if a spirit sat before me. Miss A. exclaimed, "This
    influence has taken complete possession of me, as none of the
    others did. I am obliged to do what it wants me to." I asked if
    Turner would write his name for me, to which she replied by a
    sharp, decided negative sign. I then asked if he would give me
    some advice about my painting, remembering Turner's kindly
    invitation and manner when I saw him. This proposition was met by
    the same decided negative, accompanied by the fixed and sardonic
    stare which the girl had put on at the coming of the new
    influence. This disconcerted me, and I then explained to my
    brother what had been going on, as, the questions being mental, he
    had no clue to the pantomime. I said that as an influence which
    purported to be Turner was present, and refused to answer any
    questions, I supposed there was nothing more to be done.

    But Miss A. still sat unmoved and helpless, so we waited.
    Presently she remarked that the influence wanted her to do
    something she knew not what, only that she had to get up and go
    across the room, which she did with the feeble step of an old man.
    She crossed the room and took down from the wall a colored French
    lithograph, and, coming to me, laid it on the table before me, and
    by gesture called my attention to it. She then went through the
    pantomime of stretching a sheet of paper on a drawing-board, then
    that of sharpening a lead pencil, following it up by tracing the
    outlines of the subject in the lithograph. Then followed in
    similar pantomime the choosing of a water-color pencil, noting
    carefully the necessary fineness of the point, and then the
    washing-in of a drawing, broadly. Miss A. seemed much amused by
    all this, but as she knew nothing of drawing she understood
    nothing of it. Then with the pencil and her pocket handkerchief
    she began taking out the lights, "rubbing-out," as the technical
    term is. This seemed to me so contrary to what I conceived to be
    the execution of Turner that I interrupted with the question, "Do
    you mean to say that Turner rubbed out his lights?" to which she
    gave the affirmative sign. I asked further if in a drawing which I
    then had in my mind, the well-known "Llanthony Abbey," the central
    passage of sunlight and shadow through rain was done in that way,
    and she again gave the affirmative reply, emphatically. I was so
    firmly convinced to the contrary that I was now persuaded that
    there was a simulation of personality, such as was generally the
    case with the public mediums, and I said to my brother, who had
    not heard any of my questions [He says above that they were
    mental. Ed.] that this was another humbug, and then repeated what
    had passed, saying that Turner could not have worked in that way.

    Six weeks later I sailed for England, and, on arriving in London,
    I went at once to see Ruskin, and told him the whole story. He
    declared the contrariness manifested by the medium to be entirely
    characteristic of Turner, and had the drawing in question down for
    examination. We scrutinized it closely, and both recognized beyond
    dispute that the drawing had been executed in the way that Miss A.
    indicated. Ruskin advised me to send an account of the affair to
    the _Cornhill_, which I did; but it was rejected, as might have
    been expected in the state of public opinion at that time, and I
    can easily imagine Thackeray putting it into the basket in a rage.

    I offer no interpretation of the facts which I have here recorded,
    but I have no hesitation in saying that they completed and fixed
    my conviction of the existence of invisible and independent
    intelligences to which the phenomena were due.

To me they seem perhaps the nearest I have come to a communication of
something not known to any earthly intelligence, and yet it _may_ have
been so known.

When manifestations of this general nature first attracted systematic
study, they were attributed, as already stated, to telepathy from the
sitter. Stillman knew Turner, and as Stillman had an artist's vividness of
impression, the sensitive could have got from him a pretty good idea of
Turner, and have acted it out. But how about the innumerable cases not
unlike the Foster cases quoted, where sensitives get impressions much more
vivid than the sitter appears capable of holding, and act them out with
dramatic verisimilitude of which the sitter is absolutely incapable; and
how about the innumerable cases where the sensitive gets impressions and
memories which the sitter never had?

These have been accounted for as being picked up from absent persons, by a
kind of wireless telegraphy, for which we have ventured, with the
assistance of a couple of Grecian friends, to suggest the name

Well! In this Turner case, _somebody_ somewhere, _may_ have known what
neither the sensitive nor Stillman knew of Turner's method of work, and
the sensitive's wireless _may_ have picked up all those detailed
impressions and dramatic impressions of them from that unknown _somebody_.
But is that any easier to swallow than that old Turner himself was the
somebody--that his share of the cosmic soul, or a sufficient portion of
his share, flowed into or hypnotized the sensitive, and made her act as
she did?

       *       *       *       *       *

And now let us go on to some of the developments of these phenomena
manifested by Mrs. Piper. Unlike the manifestations already given, hers
are not from waking dreams, but from dreams in trance. Moreover, so far
the sensitives have manifested impressions of but one personality at a
time, but Mrs. Piper has manifested one by speech and, at the same time,
another by writing, the expressions of the two apparent personalities
progressing independently, with full coherence and consistency. Moreover,
in many of her trances she seemed as if surrounded by a crowd of persons
endeavoring, with different degrees of success, to express themselves
through her, or she endeavoring to express them. All this of course, is
counter to the impression prevailing during the early years of her career,
that her soul had left her body, and the body was "possessed" by a
postcarnate soul expressing itself through her. The present aspect of the
facts is more as if she had impressions such as we all have in dreams, of
any number of personalities around her. Some of her typical manifestations
may give still further indications of interflowing of mental impressions.

The George "Pelham" famous in the annals of Psychical Research was a
friend of the present writer, and his alleged postcarnate self appeared
through Mrs. Piper to the following effect. There could not have been
anything cooked up about it; it was my first and only sitting with Mrs.
Piper, who knew nothing about me or my friends. In fact, the old theories
of some form of fraud, now, in the light of the vast accumulation of later
knowledge, seem ridiculous. However the phenomena have to be explained,
that explanation is out of date.

    G.P. speaks.--"A" [assumed initial. Ed.] "is in a critical state.
    He's not himself now. He's terribly depressed." Sitter--"Can you
    tell anything [more] about A?" G.P.--"Friend of yours in body."
    S.--"Of Hodgson?" [Who was present. This question and the
    following were mild "tests": I knew the man well. Ed.]
    G.P.--"Yes." S.--"Did I ever know him?" G.P.--"Yes, you knew him
    very well. You're connected with him." S.--"Through whom?"
    G.P.--"Do you know any B----?" [assumed initial. Ed.] S.--"Are A.
    and I connected through B?" G.P.--"Write to B. and he'll tell you
    all about it."

It turned out later that A. actually was low in his mind, and that B.,
whom nobody present knew, _was_ trying to get him occupation. I knew
nothing whatever about any such circumstances, nor did Hodgson. To suppose
that Mrs. Piper did, would be absurd. _But_ they were known to other minds
"in the body," and hence the medium's utterance of them is open to the
interpretation of teloteropathy. Similar instances are not rare, but the
interpretation of teloteropathy seems to be rapidly losing probability.

In this instance, I _was_ "connected with" B., but only so far as he had
become a professor at Yale long after my graduation: I did not know him
personally. But my intimate connection with A. was not only direct, but
through several persons intimate with us both, including G.P. when living.
Mere telepathy, certainly mere telepathy from my mind, would have
"spotted" some one of these connections much more readily than the alleged
one with B., which was hardly a connection at all.

The _simplest_ solution for the whole business, though perhaps not the
most "scientific," or even probable, is that the spirit of G.P. was
troubled about A. and habitually thinking of me at the University Club as
a Yale man, on my turning up at the seance, was reminded of the solution
of A.'s troubles proposed through B., and wanted me to help.

And now to this rather commonplace manifestation comes an interesting
sequel illustrating the reach of mind spoken of at the outset. Out of a
perfectly clear sky came to me in New York on April 8, 1894, the message
from G.P., to look out for A., who was low in his mind, and that B. was
trying to get a place for him. On May 29th, Hodgson writes me as follows,
showing that the same thing had come up _through the heteromatic writing
of A.'s wife at Granada in Spain_, and meant nothing to her or to A.

    --You may be interested in the inclosed. Keep private. [This
    injunction is of course outlawed by time, but I still conceal the
    names of the parties. Ed.] and please return. I am writing from my
    den, and haven't copy of your sitting at hand. But I remember that
    something was said at your sitting _re_ B. and A.

    (_Copy of Enclosure._)

    "GRANADA, May 6, 1894.

    "Dear H.[odgson]:

    "Those suggestions from Geo. that I write to B. prove interesting
    in the light of what I first learned here: that he had been
    lamenting my silence and had been urging me to a place as ----
    [at] Yale where he is. I had no notion of this move on his part
    till four days ago when I received a letter telling me. Of course
    nothing came of it, but anything less known than that cannot be
    imagined. The message came once earlier thro' [his wife. Ed.] to
    whom George wrote it [heteromatically. Ed.]. George [in life. Ed.]
    never heard of B. nor saw him, nor did we ever speak of B. to Geo.
    or Phinuit.... Of course I don't want mention made of the effort
    of B. to get me the Yale place. What Geo. said was to write to B.;
    he is a good friend of yours [_i.e._, of A. Ed.]

    "All send kind messages. Yrs. ever.


Being intensely busy, and not as much interested in the matter as later
experiences have made me, I did not at the moment catch the full purport
of Hodgson's letter, or write him till June 5th, and did not keep any copy
that I can find of my letter. He wrote me on the 8th:

    "Thanks for yours of June 5th, with return of A.'s letter. I knew
    nothing whatever of the circumstances connected with B., neither,
    so far as I can tell by cross-questioning, did Mrs. Piper."

And I, the present scribe, certainly did not. A. did not. B. alone did,
with whatever persons he may have approached on the matter, and Mrs. Piper
had presumably never seen one of the group. So where did Mrs. Piper and
Mrs. A. get it? The only answers that seem possible are that she and Mrs.
A. either got it teloteropathically from one of those absent, or that the
postcarnate George Pelham himself wrote her about it, and also told me of
it through Mrs. Piper's organism in New York, and four days later was
working it into a cross-correspondence through Mrs. A. in Spain. At first
blush the latter seems easier; and I am not sure but that it does on

Hodgson's letter continues:

    "I never knew of any B. connected with Yale. When B. was first
    mentioned at the sitting, I had a vague notion that some B. or
    other had gone to England or France as United States consul. I
    also knew the name of ---- ---- B. [a celebrated author. Ed.], and
    met her after she became Mrs. C. two or three years ago.

    "On questioning Mrs. Piper, which I did by referring to books
    first, I found that she remembered the name of ---- ---- B. when I
    mentioned it, and connected it in some way with [a certain book.
    Ed.], which was widely circulated some years ago. This was the
    only B. that she seemed to know anything about....

    "Yours sincerely,

    "R. HODGSON."

Now does not all this give a strong impression of an interflow among minds
all over--in New York (the place of the sitting), Granada (Mrs. A.'s place
of sojourn), Boston (A.'s home), New Haven (B.'s home), and the universe
in general (G.P.'s apparent home)--of an interflow free from the
limitations of time and space, and independent of all means of
communication known to us?

This impression tends to grow deeper with farther study. We have had a
cross-correspondence between two incarnate intelligences and one apparently
postcarnate. Mr. Piddington has unearthed a cross-correspondence between
one apparently postcarnate intelligence and seven "living" ones.

Perhaps the significance of cross-correspondences justifies a little more
specific treatment, and even the repetition of a paragraph from the first
number of this REVIEW. The topic has lately attracted more attention from
the S.P.R. than any other.

If Mrs. Verrall in London and Mrs. Holland in India both, at about the
same time, write heteromatically about a subject that they both
understand, that is probably coincidence; but if both write about it when
but one of them understands it, that is probably teloteropathy; and if
both write about it when neither understands it, and each of their
respective writings is apparently nonsense, but both make sense when put
together, the only obvious hypothesis is that both were inspired by a
third mind.

There are many instances of strict cross-correspondence of this type. The
one we have given was perhaps more impressive than a stricter one would be
apt to be.

       *       *       *       *       *

Accounts of sittings generally suggest apparent intercommunication
independent of time and space between postcarnate intelligences: often the
controls say that they will go and find other controls, and, generally,
after a short interval, the new control manifests. It is impossible to
read many of the accounts, whether one regards them as fictitious or not,
without getting an impression--like that given by a good story-teller, if
you please, of a life outside this one, among a host of personalities who
communicate freely with each other and, through difficulties, with us. The
nature of the communication we have already tried to express by
"interflow." But all metaphors are weak beside the impression of the
Cosmic Soul that has been brought to most of those who have persistently
studied the phenomena, as to nearly all those who have speculated _a
priori_ on the nature of mind.

       *       *       *       *       *

Judged by the foregoing specimens, the literature of what we are
provisionally considering as hypnotic telepathy would not be regarded as
very cheerful. As a whole, however, the pictures it presents from an
alleged postcarnate life, are cheerful, and some of them very attractive.

Below are some from an alleged George Eliot. They are from notes of Piper
sittings kindly placed at our disposal by Professor Newbold.

To my taste the matter savors _very_ little of the reputed author. And yet
assuming for the moment that our great authors survive in a fuller life,
presumably they would have to communicate under very embarrassing
conditions: for not only would they have to cramp themselves to produce
work comprehensible here, but the System of Things would have to limit
them, lest their competition should upset the whole system of our literary
development, or rather would have involved a different one from the

My first reading of the alleged George Eliot matter inclined me to scout
it entirely. It is certainly not in all particulars what that great soul
would have sent from a better world if she had been permitted to
communicate anything more profound than we have been left to find out for
ourselves, or even if she had had the commonplace chance to revise her
manuscript. But on reflection I realized that, although the matter came
through Mrs. Piper, it could not have come _from_ her, wherever it came
from; and that if George Eliot were communicating tidings naturally within
our comprehension, and merely descriptive of superficial experience as
distinct from reflection, and were communicating, through a poor
telephone, words to be recorded by an indifferent scribe, this material
would not seem absolutely incongruous with its alleged source, and to a
reader knowing that the stuff claimed to be hers, might possibly suggest
the weakest possible dilution or reflection of her. Yet in ways which I
have no space for, it abounds in the sort of anthropomorphism that might
be expected from the average medium or average sitter, but not from George

And now, since writing the last paragraph and going through the material
half a dozen times more, I have about concluded, or perhaps worked myself
up to the conclusion, that if a judicious blue pencil were to take from it
what could be attributed to imperfect means of communication, and what
could be considered as having slopped over from the medium, there would be
a pretty substantial and not unbeautiful residuum which might, without
straining anything, be taken for a description by George Eliot, of the
heaven she would find if, as begins to seem possible, she and the rest of
us, have or are to have heavens to suit our respective tastes. But what
would have to be taken out is often ludicrously incongruous with George
Eliot, and taking it out would certainly be open to serious question.

Yet whatever may be the qualities, merits, or demerits of this "George
Eliot" matter, what character it has is its own, and different materially
from any I have seen recorded from any other control. What is vastly more
important, despite the lapses in knowledge, taste, and style, which
negative its being the unmodified production of George Eliot, it
nevertheless presents, _me judice_, the most reasonable, suggestive, and
attractive pictures of a life beyond bodily death that I know of: it is
not a reflection of previous mythologies, it is congruous with the tastes
of what we now consider rational beings, and might well fill their
desires; and it _tallies with our experiences_--in dreams. Yet it is not a
great feat of imagination; but in recent times no great genius has
attacked the subject, and George Eliot would not have been expected to
devote her imagination to it, which raises a slight presumption that what
is told is really told by her from experience.

If I had to venture a guess as to how it came into existence, I should
guess that somebody within range, hardly Mrs. Piper herself, had been
reading George Eliot, or about George Eliot, and the musk-melon pollen had
affected the cucumbers. Professor Newbold, for instance, was entirely able
involuntarily to create and telepath the stories, and better shaped ones.
Some real George Eliot influence may have flowed in too, but on that my
judgment is in suspense.

"George Eliot" comes in abruptly to Hodgson, on February 26, 1897. After a
few preliminaries, in response to a remark of Hodgson's on her dislike of
and disbelief in spiritism, she says:

    "... You may have noted the anxiety of such as I to return and
    enlighten your fellow men. It is more especially confined to
    unbelievers before their departure to this life."

This remark and the persistent efforts of the alleged G.P. who, living,
was a thorough skeptic, would seem strongly "evidential."

    _March 5, 1897._

    _Hodgson sitting._

    [G.E. writes:] "Do you remember me well?... I had a sad life in
    many ways, yet in others I was happy, yet I have never known what
    real happiness was until I came here.... I was an unbeliever, in
    fact almost an agnostic when I left my body, but when I awoke and
    found myself alive in another form superior in quality, that is,
    my body less gross and heavy, with no pangs of remorse, no
    struggling to hold on to the material body, I found it had all
    been a dream...." R.H.: "That was your first experience?" G.E.:
    "... The moment I had been removed from my body I found at once I
    had been thoroughly mistaken in my conjectures. I looked back upon
    my whole life in one instant. Every thought, word, or action which
    I had ever experienced passed through my mind like a wonderful
    panorama as it were before my vision. You cannot begin to imagine
    anything so real and extraordinary as this first awakening.... I
    awoke in a realm of golden light. I heard the voices of friends
    who had gone before calling to me to follow them. At the moment
    the thrill of joy was so intense I was like one standing
    spellbound before a beautiful panorama. The music which filled my
    soul was like a tremendous symphony. I had never heard nor dreamed
    of anything half so beautiful....

    "Another thing which seemed to me beautiful was the tranquillity
    of everyone. You will perhaps remember that I had left a state
    where no one ever knew what tranquillity meant."

    _March 13, 1807:_ "I was speaking about the songs of our birds.
    Then the birds seemed to pass beyond my vision, and I longed for
    music of other kinds.... When, to my surprise, my desires were
    filled.... Just before me sat the most beautiful bevy of young
    girls that eyes ever rested upon. Some playing stringed
    instruments, others that sounded and looked like silver bugles,
    but they were all in harmony, and I must truly confess that I
    never heard such strains of music before. No mortal mind can
    possibly realize anything like it. It was not only in this one
    thing that my desires were filled, but in all things accordingly.
    I had not one desire, but that it was filled without any apparent
    act of myself.

    "I longed to see gardens and trees, flowers, etc. I no sooner had
    the desire than they appeared.... Such beautiful flowers no human
    eye ever gazed upon. It was simply indescribable, yet everything
    was real.... I walked and moved along as easily as a fly would
    pass through a ray of sunlight in your world. I had no weight,
    nothing cumbersome, nothing.... I passed along through this
    garden, meeting millions of friends. As they were all friendly to
    me, each and every one seemed to be my friend.... I then thought
    of different friends I had once known, and my desire was to meet
    some one of them, when like every other thought or desire that I
    had expressed, the friend of whom I thought instantly appeared."

How much all this is like dreams!

    _March 27, 1897._ (A good deal of confusion, out of which appears)
    "He will insist upon calling me Miss, but let him if he wishes. I
    am very much Mrs. Never mind so long as it suits him....

    "I have a desire for reading, when instantly my whole surrounding
    is literally filled with books of all kinds and by many different
    authors.... When I touched a book and desired to meet its author,
    if he or she were in our world, he or she would instantly appear.
    [Is this purely incidental reiterated claim for female authors, by
    one of them, 'evidential,' or was Mrs. Piper ingenious enough to
    invent it? Ed.]...."

The change of the instrument below is a specially dreamlike touch.

    _March 30, 1897._ "I wished to see and realize that some of the
    mortal world's great musicians really existed, and asked to be
    visited by some one or more of them. When this was expressed,
    instantly several appeared before me, and Rubinstein stood before
    me playing upon an instrument like a harp at first. Then the
    instrument was changed and a piano appeared and he played upon it
    with the most delightful ease and grace of manner. While he was
    playing the whole atmosphere was filled with his strains of

She wanted to see Rembrandt, and he came, with a quantity of pictures. She
wanted a symphony, and an orchestra "of some thirty musicians" at once
appeared and gave her several, which she enjoyed to the full.

Now George Eliot was a remarkably good musician. If she wanted an
orchestra, she would have wanted at least sixty, and probably more than a
hundred. Perhaps they do these things with more limited resources in
Heaven? Such an incongruity as this, and the inane dilution of the writing
(which of course does not appear at its worst in the selected passages)
make a genuine George Eliot control hard to predicate, and yet this
control, like virtually every other one, is an individuality, and is less
unlike George Eliot than is any other control I know. Will difficulties of
communication or any other _tertium quid_, make up the difference? I first
read the record with repulsion, and now find in it some elements of

Do you care for a little more? She wanted to see "angels," and gives a
very pretty picture of an experience with a bevy of children. Telepathy
from the sitter will hardly account for the following, especially the
strange turn at the end, which is signally dreamlike.

    "I being fond, very fond of writers of ancient history, etc., felt
    a strong desire to see Dante, Aristotle and several others.
    Shakespeare if such a spirit existed. [An odd bunch of 'writers of
    ancient history'! Ed.] As I stood thinking of him a spirit
    instantly appeared who speaking said 'I am Bacon.' ... As Bacon
    neared me he began to speak and quoted to me the following words
    'You have questioned my reality. Question it no more. I am

    _June 4, 1897._ "... Speak to me for a moment and if you have
    anything to say in the nature of poetry or prose would you kindly
    recite a line or two to me. It will give me strength to remain
    longer than I could otherwise do. [R.H. recites a poem of Dowden's

      'I said I will find God and forth I went
       To seek him in the clearness of the sky,' etc. Excitement.]

    G.E.: 'I will go and see G. and return presently (R.H.: Who says
    that?) I do. (R.H.: I do not understand what you mean by G.) I do.
    My husband. Do you not know I had a husband? (R.H.: Do you mean by
    G. Mr. George Henry Lewes?) [Hand is writing Lewes while I am
    saying George Henry] Lewes. Yes I do. Oh I am so happy. And when I
    did not mistake altogether my deeds I am more _happy than tongue
    can utter_."

As bearing on her feeling for Lewes not many months after his death, the
foregoing does not correspond with some widely credited but unpublished

Now does not all this read as if Mrs. Piper were dreaming of George Eliot,
just as any of us might dream? Its quality seems as if it might be a
transcript of one of my own dreams, with the important exceptions that the
dreamer wrote it all out, and that it is made up from a series of dreams,
coming up at intervals for about six months, and apparently only when
Hodgson was present, though there are records of George Eliot appearing to
other sitters at other seances.

       *       *       *       *       *

We have, then, groped our way to a vague notion of a dream-life on the
part of certain sensitives, which seems to participate in another life, in
some ways similar, that is led by intelligences who have passed beyond the

We are not saying that this interpretation of the phenomena is the correct
one: on the contrary we are constantly haunted by a suspicion that any day
it may be exploded by some new discovery. But we do say, with considerable
confidence, that of all the interpretations yet offered--even including
the pervasive one that "the little boy lied," it surpasses all the others
in the portion of the facts that it fits, and in the weight attached to it
by the most capable students--even by James, who, however, did not accept
it as established, though he gave many indications that he felt himself
likely to. Myers definitely accepted it, not from the impressions of the
sensitives, but from having them capped by a veridical impression of his
own. Through the church service one Sunday morning, he felt an inner voice
assuring him: "Your friend is still with you." Later he found that Gurney,
with whom he had a manifestation-pact, had died the night before. We are
not aware that Myers ever published this, but he told it to the present
writer and presumably to others. The convictions of Hodgson and Sir Oliver
Lodge were interpretations of the phenomena of the sensitives, though
Hodgson, it is now known, was probably mainly influenced by communications
from the alleged postcarnate soul of all possible ones most dear to him.

But to return to the sensitives. They seem to be somnambulists who talk
out and write out what they see and hear in their dreams. What they see,
and consequently what they say, is a good deal of a jumble. They see and
hear persons they never saw before. Sometimes they identify themselves
more or less with these personalities. Mrs. Piper nearly always does.
Those others say many things, and very often correct things, unknown to
sensitives, to anybody present, or to anybody else that can be found.
Rather unusual among ordinary dreamers, but by no means unprecedented. But
from here on the experiences of the sensitives are more and more unusual.

Some of the people Mrs. Piper (I speak of her as the representative of a
class) never saw before, and of whom she never saw portraits, she
identifies from photographs. Very few people have done that: perhaps very
few have had the chance. There have been many times when I am sure I
could, if photographs had been presented.

Her personalities and those of many sensitives are nearly always "dead"
friends, not of the sensitives, but of the sitters, and abound in
indications of genuineness in scope and accuracy of memory, in
distinctness of individual recollections and characteristics, and in all
the dramatic indications that go to demonstrate personalities. She sees
and hears these personalities again and again, and _keeps them distinct_
in feature and character.

Now what do we mean by personalities? Is one, after all, anything more or
less than an individualized aggregate of cosmic vibrations, physical and
psychical, with the power of producing on us certain impressions. You and
I know our friends as such aggregates, and nothing more.

And what do we mean by discarnate personalities? In most minds, the first
answer will probably bear a pretty close resemblance to Fra Angelico's
angels, and very nice angels they are! But to some of the more prosy minds
that have thought on the subject in the light of the best and fullest
information, or misinformation, probably the answer will be more like
this: A personality, incarnate or postcarnate, in the last analysis, is a
manifestation of the Cosmic Soul. From that the raw material is supplied
with the star dust, and later, through our senses, from the earliest
reactions of our protozoic ancestors, up to our dreams; and the material
is worked up into each personality through reactions with the environment.
Thus it becomes an aggregate of capacities to impress another personality
with certain sensations, ideas, emotions. As already said, the incarnate
personality impresses us thru certain vibrations. But after that portion
of the vibrations constituting "the body" disappears, there still abides
somewhere the capacity of impressing us, at least in the dream life.
Perhaps it abides only in the memory of survivors, and gets into our
dreams telepathically, though that is losing probability every day; and,
with our anthropomorphic habits, we want to know "where" this capacity to
impress us abides. The thinkers generally say: In the Cosmic reservoir,
which I would rather express as the psychic ocean, boundless, fathomless,
throbbing eternally. It seems to be made up of the original mind-potential
plus all thoughts and feelings that have ever been. And into this ocean
seem to be constantly passing those currents that we know as
individualities, that can each influence, and even intermingle with, other
individualities, here as well as there: for here really is there. While
each does this, it still retains its own individuality. This is, of
course, a vague string of guesses venturing outward from the borderland of
our knowledge. It may be a little clearer, the more we bear in mind that
the apparent influencings and interminglings seem to be telepathic.

Now apparently among the accomplishments of a personality, does not
_necessarily_ inhere that of depressing a scale x pounds: for when that
capacity is entirely absent, from the apparent personalities who visit us
in the dream state, they can impress us in every other way, even to all
the reciprocities of sex. But for some reasons not yet understood, with
ordinary dreamers these impressions are not as congruous, persistent,
recurrent, or regulable in the dream life as in the waking life. But with
Mrs. Piper, Hodgson after his death, and especially G.P. and others, were
about as persistent and consistent associates as anybody living, barring
the fact that they could not show themselves over an hour or two at a
time, which was the limit of the medium's psychokinetic power, on which
their manifestations depended. But that these personalities are not in
time to be evolved so that they will be more permanent and consistent with
dreamers generally, would be a contradiction to at least some of the
implications of evolution.

       *       *       *       *       *

Accepting provisionally the identity of a postcarnate life with the life
indicated in dreams, are there any further indications of its nature?
There are some, which may lend some slight confirmation to the theory of

It seems to show itself not only in the visions of the sensitives, but in
the dream life of all of us. If Mrs. Piper's dream state (I name her only
as a type) is really one of communication with souls who have passed into
a new life, dream states generally may not extravagantly be supposed to be
foretastes of that life. And so far as concerns their desirability, why
should they not be? Our ordinary dreams are, like the dreams of the
sensitives, superior to time, space, matter and force--to all the trammels
of our waking environment and powers. In dreams we experience unlimited
histories, and pass over unlimited spaces, in an instant; see, hear, feel,
touch, taste, smell, enjoy unlimited things; walk, swim, fly, change
things, with unlimited ease; do things with unlimited power; make what we
will--music, poetry, objects of art, situations, dramas, with unlimited
faculty, and enjoy unlimited society. Unless we have eaten too much, or
otherwise got ourselves out of order in the waking life, in the dream life
we seldom if ever know what it is to be too late for anything, or too far
from anything; we freely fall from chimneys or precipices, and I suppose
it will soon be aeroplanes, with no worse consequences than comfortably
waking up into the everyday world; we sometimes solve the problems which
baffle us here; we see more beautiful things than we see here; and, far
above all, we resume the ties that are broken here.

The indications seem to be that if we ever get the hang of that life, we
can have pretty much what we like, and eliminate what we don't
like--continue what we enjoy, and stop what we suffer--find no bars to
congeniality, or compulsion to boredom. To good dreamers it is unnecessary
to offer proof of any of these assertions, and to prove them to others is

The dream life contains so much more beauty, so much fuller emotion, and
such wider reaches than the waking life, that one is tempted to regard it
as the real life, to which the waking life is somehow a necessary
preliminary. So orthodox believers regard the life after death as the real
life: yet most of their hopes regarding that life--even the strongest hope
of rejoining lost loved ones--are realized here during the brief throbs of
the dream life.

There seems to be no happiness from association in our ordinary life which
is not obtainable, by some people at least, from association in the dream
life. And as this appears to exist between incarnate A and postcarnate B,
there is at least a suggestion that it may exist between postcarnate A and
postcarnate B, and to a degree vastly more clear and abiding than during
the present discrepancy between the incarnate and postcarnate conditions?
This of course assumes, that B's appearance in A's dream life, just as he
appeared on earth (though, as I know to be the case, sometimes wiser,
healthier, jollier, and more lovable generally), is something more than a
mild attack of dyspepsia on the part of A.

Dreams do not seem to abound in work, and are often said not to abound in
morality, but I know that they sometimes do--in morality higher than any
attainable in our waking life. Certainly the scant vague indications from
the dream suggestions of a future life do not necessarily preclude
abundant work and morality, any more than work and sundry self-denials are
precluded on a holiday because one does not happen to perform them.
Moreover, the hoped-for future conditions may not contain the necessities
for either labor or self-restraint that present conditions do: they may
not be the same dangers there as here in the _dolce far niente_, or in
Platonic friendships.

       *       *       *       *       *

Men are not consistent in their attitude regarding dreams. They admit the
dream state to be ideal--constantly use such expressions as "A dream of
loveliness," "Happier than I could even dream," "Surpasses my fondest
dreams," and yet on the other hand they call its experience "but the
baseless vision of a dream." What do they mean by "baseless"? Certainly it
is not lack of vividness or emotional intensity. It is probably the lack
of duration in the happy experiences, and of the possibility of
remembering them, and, still more, of enjoying similar ones at will. Yet
the sensitives do both in recurrent instalments of the dream life, and
like the rest of us, through the intervening waking periods, after the
first hour or so, generally know nothing of the dreams. It is not
vividness of the dream life itself that is lacking, but vividness in our
memories of it. James defines our waking personality as the stream of
consciousness: the dream life gives no such stream. To-night does not
continue last night as to-day continues yesterday. The dream life is not
like a stream, but more like a series, though hardly integral enough to be
a series, of disconnected pools, many of them perhaps more enchanting than
any parts of the waking stream, but not, like that stream, an organic
whole with motion toward definite results, and power to attain them. But
suppose the dream life continues after the body's death, and under
direction toward definite ends, at least so far as the waking life is, and
still free from the trammels of the waking life--suppose us to have at
least as much power to secure its joys and avoid its terrors as we have
regarding those of the waking life; and with all the old intimacies which
it spasmodically restores, restored permanently, and with the discipline
of separation to make them nearer perfect. What more can we manage to

The suggestion has come to more than one student, that when we enter into
life--as spermatozoa, or star dust if you please--we enter into the
eternal life, but that the physical conditions essential to our
development into appreciating it, are a sort of veil between it and our
consciousness. In our waking life we know it only through the veil; but
when in sleep or trance, the material environment is removed from
consciousness, the veil becomes that much thinner, and we get better
glimpses of the transcendent reality.

Does it not seem then as if, in dreams, we enter upon our closer relation
with the hyper-phenomenal mind? All sorts of things seem to be in it, from
the veriest trifles and absurdities up to the highest things our minds can
receive, and presumably an infinity of things higher still. They appear to
flow into us in all sorts of ways, presumably depending upon the condition
of the nerve apparatus through which they flow. If that is out of gear
from any disorder or injury, what it receives is not only trifling, but
often grotesque and painful; while if it is in good estate, it often
receives things far surpassing in beauty and wisdom those of our waking
phenomenal world.

Apparently every dreamer is a medium for this flow, but dreamers vary
immensely in their capacity to receive it--from Hodge, who dreams only
when he has eaten too much, or Professor Gradgrind who never dreams at
all, up to Mrs. Thompson and Mrs. Piper.

As oft remarked, dreams generally are nonsense, but some dreams, or parts
of some dreams, are perhaps the most significant things we know. Each
vision, waking or sleeping, must have a cause, and as an expression of
that cause, must be veridical. On the one hand, the cause of a trivial
dream is generally too trivial to be ascertained: it may be too much
lobster, or impaired circulation or respiration; while on the other hand
(and here the paradox seems to be explained), the cause of an important
dream must, _ex vi termini_, be some important event. But important events
are rare, and therefore significant dreams are rare; while trivial events
are frequent, and therefore trivial dreams are frequent.

The important and rare event _may_ be such a conjunction of circumstances
and temperaments as makes it possible for a postcarnate intelligence,
assuming the existence of such, to communicate with an incarnate one. That
such apparent communications are rare tends to indicate their genuineness.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now to develop a little farther the time-honored hypothesis of a cosmic
soul as explaining dreams, and supported by them.

Admit, provisionally at least, that the medium is merely an extraordinary
dreamer. Does a man do his own dreaming, or is it done for him? Does a man
do his own digesting, circulating, assimilating, or is it done for him? If
he does not do these things himself, who does? About the physical
functions through the sympathetic nerve, we answer unhesitatingly: the
cosmic force. How, then, about the psychic functions? Are they done by the
cosmic psyche?

Like respiration, they are partly under our control, but that does not
affect the problem. Who runs them when we do not run them, even when we
try to stop them that we may get to sleep? Even when, after they have
yielded to our entreaties to stop, and we are asleep, they begin going
again--without our will. The only probability I can make out is that our
thinking is run by a power not ourselves, as much as our other partly
involuntary functions.

To hold that a man does his own dreaming--that it is done by a secondary
layer of his own consciousness--is to hold that we are made up of layers
of consciousness, of which the poorest layer is that of what we call our
waking life, and the better layers are at our service only in our
dreams--that when a man is asleep or mad he can solve problems, compose
music, create pictures, to which, when awake and in his sober senses, and
in a condition to profit by his work, and give profit from it, he is

Nay more, the theory claims that a man's working consciousness--his
self--the only self known to him or the world, will hold and shape his
life by a set of convictions which, in sleep, he will _himself_ prove
wrong, and thereby revolutionize his philosophy and his entire life.
Wouldn't it be more reasonable to attribute all such results--the
solutions of the problems, the music, the pictures, the corrections of the
errors--to a power outside himself?

I cannot believe that there's anything in my individual consciousness
which my experience or that of my ancestors has not placed there--in raw
material at least; or that in working up that raw material _I_ can exert
any genius in my sometimes chaotic dreams that I cannot exert in my
systematized waking hours. All the people I meet and talk with in my
dreams _may_ have been met and talked with by me or my forebears, though I
don't believe it; but the works of art I see have not been known to me or
my ancestors or any other mortal; nor have I any sign of the genius to
combine whatever elements of them I may have seen, into any such designs.
And when in dreams _other_ persons tell me things contrary to my firmest
convictions, in which things I later discover germs of most important
workable truth, the persons who tell me that, and who are different from
me as far as fairly decent persons can differ from each other, are
certainly not, as the good Du Prel would have us believe, myself. All
these things are not figments of _my_ mind--if they are figments of a
mind, it's a mind bigger than mine. The biggest claim I can make, or
assent to anybody else making, is that my mind is telepathically receptive
of the product of that greater mind.

Here are some farther evidences of the greater mind, given by Lombroso
(_After Death, What?_, 320 f.):

    It is well known that in his dreams Goethe solved many weighty
    scientific problems and put into words many most beautiful verses.
    So also La Fontaine (_The Fable of Pleasures_) and Coleridge and
    Voltaire. Bernard Palissy had in a dream the inspiration for one
    of his most beautiful ceramic pieces....

    Holde composed while in a dream _La Phantasie_, which reflects in
    its harmony its origin; and Nodier created _Lydia_, and at the
    same time a whole theory on the future of dreaming. Condillac in
    dream finished a lecture interrupted the evening before. Kruger,
    Corda, and Maignan solved in dreams mathematical problems and
    theorems. Robert Louis Stevenson, in his _Chapters on Dreams_,
    confesses that portions of his most original novels were composed
    in the dreaming state. Tartini had while dreaming one of his most
    portentous musical inspirations. He saw a spectral form
    approaching him. It is Beelzebub in person. He holds a magic
    violin in his hands, and the sonata begins. It is a divine adagio,
    melancholy-sweet, a lament, a dizzy succession of rapid and
    intense notes. Tartini rouses himself, leaps out of bed, seizes
    his violin, and reproduces all that he had heard played in his
    sleep. He names it the _Sonata del Diavolo_,...

    Giovanni Dupre got in a dream the conception of his very beautiful
    _Pieta_. One sultry summer day Dupre was lying on a divan thinking
    hard on what kind of pose he should choose for the Christ. He fell
    asleep, and in dream he saw the entire group at last complete,
    with Christ in the very pose he had been aspiring to conceive, but
    which his mind had not succeeded in completely realizing.

It is a quite frequent experience that a person perplexed by a problem at
night finds it solved on waking in the morning. Efforts to remember, which
are unsuccessful before going to sleep, on waking are often found

A dream is a work of genius, and in many respects, perhaps most,
especially in vividness of imagination, the best example we have. It is
the most spontaneous, constructed with the least effort from fewest
materials, the least restrained, and often immeasurably surpassing all
works of waking genius in the same department. A genius gets a trifling
hint, and being inspired by the gods (anthropomorphic for: flowed in upon
by the cosmic soul?) builds out of the hint a poem or a drama or a
symphony. You and I build dreams surpassing the poem or the drama or the
symphony, but our friends Dryasdust and Myopia inquire into our
experiences, and sometimes find a little hint on which a dream was built,
and then all dreams are demonstrated things unworthy of serious
consideration. Is it not a more rational view that the fact that the soul
can in the dream state elaborate so much from so little, indicates it to
be then already in a life which has no limits?

Havelock Ellis, in his _World of Dreams_, says (p. 229):

    Our eyes close, our muscles grow slack, the reins fall from our
    hands. But it sometimes happens that the horse knows the road home
    even better than we know it ourselves.

He puts "the horse" outside of the dreamer plainly enough here. He further
says (p. 280).

    If we take into account the complete psychic life of dreaming,
    subconscious as well as conscious, it is waking, not sleeping,
    life which may be said to be limited.... Sleep, Vaschide has said,
    is not, as Homer thought, the brother of Death, but of Life, and,
    it may be added, the elder brother....

He quotes from Bergson (_Revue Philosophique_, December, 1908, p. 574):

    This dream state is the substratum of our normal state. Nothing is
    added in waking life; on the contrary, waking life is obtained by
    the limitation, concentration, and tension of that diffuse
    psychological life which is the life of dreaming.... To be awake
    is to will; cease to will, detach yourself from life, become
    disinterested: in so doing you pass from the waking ego to the
    dreaming ego, which is less _tense_, but more _extended_ than the

Ellis continues (p. 281):

    I have cultivated, so far as I care to, my garden of dreams, and
    it scarcely seems to me that it is a large garden. Yet every path
    of it, I sometimes think, might lead at last to the heart of the

But with the exception of a few spasmodic inspirations, the records of
dreams, ordinary or from the sensitives, contain nothing new--nothing to
relieve man from the blessed necessity of eating his bread, intellectual
as well as material, in the sweat of his brow; and, perhaps more important
still, little to make the interests or responsibilities of this life
weaker because of any realized inferiority to those of a possible later

It would apparently be inconsistent in Nature, or God, if you prefer, to
start our evolution under earthly conditions, educating us in knowledge
and character through labor and suffering, but at the same time throwing
open to our perceptions, from another life, a wider range of knowledge and
character attainable without labor or suffering.

I have no time or space or inclination to argue with those who deny a plan
in Nature. He who does, probably lives away from Nature. It appears to
have been a part of that plan that for a long time past most of us should
"believe in" immortality, and that, at least until very lately, none of us
should know anything about it. Confidence in immortality has been a
dangerous thing. So far we haven't all made a very good use of it. Many of
the people who have had most of it and busied themselves most with it, so
to speak, have largely transferred their interests to the other life, and
neglected and abused this one. "Other-worldliness" is a well-named vice,
and positive evidence of immortality might be more dangerous than mere
confidence in it.

All this, I think, supports the notion that whatever, if anything, is in
store for us beyond this life, it would be a self-destructive scheme of
things (or Scheme of Things, if you prefer) that would throw the future
life into farther competition with our interests here, at least before we
are farther evolved here. Looking at history by and large, we children
have not generally been trusted with edge tools until we had grown to some
sort of capacity to handle them. If the Mesopotamians or Egyptians or
Greeks or Romans had had gunpowder, it looks as if they would have blown
most of themselves and each other out of existence, and the rest back into
primitive savagery, and stayed there until the use of gunpowder became one
of the lost arts. But the new knowledge of evolution has given the modern
world a new intellectual interest; and the new altruism, a new moral one.
The reasons for doing one's best in this life, and doing it actively, are
so much stronger and clearer than they were when so many good people could
fall into asceticism and other-worldliness, that perhaps we are now fit to
be trusted with proofs of an after life. It is very suggestive that these
apparent proofs came contemporaneously with the new knowledge tending to
make them safe; and equally suggestive that it is when we have begun to
suffer from certain breakdowns in religion, that we have been provided
with new material for bracing it up.

At the opposite extreme, it also is suggestive that these new indications
that our present life is a petty thing beside a future one, have come just
when modern science has so increased our control over material nature that
we are in peculiar danger of having our interest in higher things buried
beneath material interests, and enervated by over-indulgence in material

If it be true that, roughly speaking, we are not entrusted with dangerous
things before we are evolved to the point where we can keep their danger
within bounds, the fact that we have not until very lately, if yet, been
entrusted with any verification of the dream of the survival of bodily
death, would seem to confer upon the spiritistic interpretation of the
recent apparent verifications, a pragmatic sanction--an accidental embryo
pun over which the historic student is welcome to a smile, and which,
since the preceding clause was written, I have seen used in all
seriousness by Professor Giddings. Conclusive or not, that "sanction" is
certainly an addition to the arguments that existed before, including the
general argument from evolution. And, so far as the phenomena go to
establish the spiritistic hypothesis, surely they are not to be lightly
regarded because as yet they do not establish it more conclusively.

       *       *       *       *       *

When during the last century science bowled down the old supports of the
belief in immortality, there grew up a tendency to regard that belief as
an evidence of ignorance, narrowness, and incapacity to face the music.
May not disregard of the possible new supports be rapidly becoming an
evidence of the same characteristics?

When the majority of those who have really studied the phenomena of the
sensitives, starting with absolute skepticism, have come to a new form of
the old belief; and when, of the remaining minority, the weight of
respectable opinion goes so far as suspense of judgment, how does the
argument look? Isn't it at least one of those cases of new phenomena where
it is well to be on guard against old mental habits, not to say

Is it not now vastly more _reasonable_ to believe in a future life than it
was a century ago, or half a century, or quarter of a century? Is it not
already more reasonable to believe in it than not to believe in it? Is it
not already appreciably harder _not_ to believe in it than it was a
generation ago?

       *       *       *       *       *

So far as I can see, the dream life, from mine up to Mrs. Piper's, vague
as it is, is an argument for immortality _based on evidence_.

The sensitives are not among the world's leading thinkers or
moralists--are not more aristocratic founders for a new faith than were a
certain carpenter's son and certain fishermen; and only by implication do
the sensitives suggest any moral truths, but they do offer more facts to
the modern demand for facts.

Spiritism has a bad name, and it has been in company where it richly
deserved one; but it has been coming into court lately with some very
important-looking testimony from very distinguished witnesses; and some
rather comprehensive minds consider its issues supreme--the principal
issues now upon the horizon, between the gross, luxurious, unthinking,
unaspiring, uncreating life of today, and everything that has, in happier
ages, given us the heritage of the soul--the issues between increasing
comforts and withering ideals--between water-power and Niagara.

The doubt of immortality is not over the innate reasonableness of it: the
universe is immeasurably more reasonable with it than without it; but over
its practicability after the body is gone. We, in our immeasurable wisdom,
don't see how it can work--we don't see how a universe that we don't begin
to know, which already has given us genius and beauty and love, and which
seems to like to give us all it can--birds, flowers, sunsets, stars,
Vermont, the Himalayas, and the Grand Canyon; which, most of all, has
given us the insatiable soul, can manage to give us immortality. Well!
Perhaps we ought not to be grasping--ought to call all we know and have,
enough, and be thankful--thankful above all, perhaps, that as far as we
can see, the hope of immortality cannot be disappointed--that the worst
answer to it must be oblivion. But on whatever grounds we despair of more
(if we are weak enough to despair), surely the least reasonable ground is
that we cannot see more: the mole might as well swear that there is no


"How to be efficient though incompetent" is the title suggested by a
distinguished psychologist for the vocational appeals of the moment. Among
these raucous calls none is more annoying to the ear of experience than
the one which summons the college girl away from the bounty of the
sciences and the humanities to the grudging concreteness of a domestic
science, a household economy, from which stars and sonnets must perforce
be excluded. We have, indeed, no quarrel with the conspicuous place now
given to the word "home" in all discussions of women's vocations.
Suffragists and anti-suffragists, feminists and anti-feminists have united
to clear a noble term from the mists of sentimentality and to reinstate it
in the vocabulary of sincere and candid speakers. More frankly than a
quarter of a century ago, educated women may now glory in the work
allotted to their sex. The most radical feminist writer of the day has
given perfect expression to the home's demand. Husband and children, she
says, have been able to count on a woman "as they could count on the fire
on the hearth, the cool shade under the tree, the water in the well, the
bread in the sacrament." We may go farther and say that our high emprise
does not depend upon husband and children. Married or unmarried, fruitful
or barren, with a vocation or without, we must make of the world a home
for the race. So far from quarrelling with the hypothesis of the domestic
scientists, we turn it into a confession of faith. It is their conclusions
that will not bear the test of experience. Because women students can
anticipate no more important career than home-making, it is argued that
within their four undergraduate years training should be given in the
practical details of house-keeping. Any woman who has been both a student
and a housekeeper knows that this argument is fallacious.

Before examining it, however, we must clear away possible
misunderstandings. Our discussion concerns colleges and not elementary
schools. Those who are loudest in denouncing the aristocratic theory of a
college education must admit that colleges contain, even today, incredible
as it sometimes seems, a selected group of young women. It is also true
that the High Schools contain selected groups. Below them are the people's
schools. The girls who do not go beyond these are to be the wives of
working men, in many cases can learn nothing from their mothers, and
before marriage may themselves be caught in the treadmill of daily labor.
It is probable that to these children of impoverished future we should
give the chance to learn in school facts which may make directly for
national health and well-being. But the girls in the most democratic state
university in this country are selected by their own ambition, if by
nothing else, for a higher level of life. Their power and their
opportunities to learn do not end on Commencement Day. The higher we go in
the scale of education, until we reach the graduate professional schools,
the less are we able and the less need we be concerned to anticipate the
specific activities of the future.

Furthermore, we are discussing colleges of "liberal" studies, not
technical schools. Into the former have strayed many students who belong
in the latter. The tragic thing about their errantry is that presidents
and faculties, instead of setting them in the right path, try to make the
college over to suit them. The rightful heirs to the knowledge of the ages
are despoiled. The most down-trodden students are those who cherish a
passion for the intellectual life. Among these are as many women as men.
If domestic science were confined to separate schools, as all applied
sciences ought to be, we should have nothing but praise for a subject
admirably conceived, and often admirably taught. In these schools it may
be studied by such High School graduates as prefer to deal with practical
rather than with pure science, and, in a larger way, by such college
graduates as wish to supplement theory with practice for professional
purposes. But in liberal colleges domestic science is but dross handed out
to seekers after gold. Against its intrusion into the curriculum no
protest can be too stern.

Faith in this study seems to rest upon the belief that the actual
experiences of life can be anticipated. This is a fallacy. There is no
dress rehearsal for the role of "wife and mother." It is a question of
experience piled on experience, life piled on life. The only way to
perform the tasks, understand the duties, accept the joys and sorrows of
any given stage of existence is to have performed the tasks, learned the
duties, fought out the joys and sorrows of earlier stages. In so far as
"housekeeping" means the application of principles of nutrition and
sanitation, these principles can be acquired at the proper time by an
active, well-trained mind. The preparation needed is not to have learned
facts three or five or ten years in advance, when theories and appliances
may have been very different, but to have taken up one subject after
another, finding how to master principles and details. This new subject is
not recondite nor are we unconquerably stupid. To learn as we go--_discere
ambulando_--need not turn the home into an experiment station.

But "every woman knows" that housekeeping, when it is a labor of love and
not a paid profession, goes far deeper than ordering meals or keeping
refrigerators clean, or making an invalid's bed with hospital precision.
We are more than cooks. We furnish power for the day's work of men, and
for the growth of children's souls. We are more than parlor maids. We are
artists, informing material objects with a living spirit. We are more even
than trained nurses. We are companions along the roads of pain, comrades,
it may be, at the gates of death. Back of our willingness to do our full
work must lie something profounder than lectures on bacteria, or interior
decoration, or an invalid's diet or a baby's bath. Specific knowledge can
be obtained in a hurry by a trained student. What cannot be obtained by
any sudden action of the mind is _the habit_ of projecting a task against
the background of human experience as that experience has been revealed in
history and literature, and of throwing into details the enthusiasm born
of this larger vision. She is fortunate who comes to the task of making a
home with this habit already formed. Her student life may have cast no
shadow of the future. When she was reading AEschylus or Berkeley, or
writing reports on the Italian despots, or counting the segments of a
beetle's antennae, she may not have foreseen the hours when the manner of
life and the manner of death of human beings would depend upon her. She
was merely sanely absorbed in the tasks of her present. But in later life
she comes to see that in performing them, she learned to disentangle the
momentary from the permanent, to prefer courage to cowardice, to pay the
price of hard work for values received. Age may bring what youth
withholds, a sense of humor, a mellow sympathy. But only youth can begin
that habitual discipline of mind and will which is the root, if not of all
success, at least of that which blooms in the comfort of other people.
Carry the logic of the vocation-mongers to its extreme. Grant that every
girl in college ought someday to marry, and that we must train her, while
we have her, for this profession. Then let the college insist on honest
work, clear thinking and bright imagination in those great fields in which
successive generations reap their intellectual harvest. Captain Rostron of
the Carpathia once spoke to a body of college students who were on fire
with enthusiasm for the rescuer of the Titanic's survivors. He ended with
some such words as these: "Go back to your classes and work hard. I
scarcely knew that night what orders were coming out when I opened my
mouth to speak, but I can tell you that I had been preparing to give those
orders ever since I was a boy in school." Many a home may be saved from
shipwreck in the future because today girls are doing their duty in their
Greek class rooms and Physics laboratories.

But this fallacy of domesticity probes deeper than we have yet indicated.
It is, in the last analysis, superficial to ticket ourselves off as
house-keepers or even as women. What are these unplumbed wastes between
housekeepers and teachers, mothers and scholars, civil engineers and
professors of Greek, senators and journalists, bankers and poets, men and
women? A philosopher has pointed out that what we share is vastly greater
than what separates us. We walk upon and must know the same earth. We live
under the same sun and stars. In our bodies we are subject to the same
laws of physics, biology and chemistry. We speak the same language, and
must shape it to our use. We are products of the same past, and must
understand it in order to understand the present. We are vexed by the same
questions about Good and Evil, Will and Destiny. We all bury our dead. We
shall all die ourselves. Back of our vocations lies human life. Back of
the streams in which we dabble is that immortal sea which brought us
hither. To sport upon its shore and hear the roll of its mighty waters is
the divine privilege of youth.

If any difference is to be made in the education of boys and girls, it
must be with the purpose of giving to future women more that is
"unvocational," "unapplied," "unpractical." As it happens, such studies as
these are the ones which the mother of a family, as well as a teacher or
writer, is most sure to apply practically in her vocation. The last word
on this aspect of the subject was said by a woman in a small Maine town.
Her father had been a day laborer, her husband was a mechanic. She had
five children, and, of course, did all the house-work. She also belonged
to a club which studied French history. To a foolish expression of
surprise that with all her little children she could find time to write a
paper on Louis XVI she retorted angrily: "With all my children! It is for
my children that I do it. I do not mean that they shall have to go out of
their home, as I have had to, for everything interesting." But the larger
truth is that the value of a woman as a mother depends precisely upon her
value as a human being. And it is for that reason that in her youth we
must lead one who is truly thirsty only to fountains pouring from the
heaven's brink. It might seem cruel if it did not merely illustrate the
law of risk involved in any creative process, that the more generously
women fulfil the "function of their sex" the more they are in danger of
losing their souls to furnish a mess of pottage. The risk of life for life
at a child's birth is more dramatic but no truer than the risk of soul for
body as the child grows. In the midst of petty household cares the nervous
system may become a master instead of a servant, a breeder of distempers
rather than a feeder of the imagination. The unhappiness of homes, the
failure of marriage, are due as often to the poverty-stricken minds, the
narrowed vision of women as to the vice of men.

  Their sense is with their senses all mix'd in,
  Destroyed by subtleties these women are.

George Meredith's prayer for us, "more brain, O Lord, more brain!" we
shall still need when "votes for women" has become an outworn slogan.

No one claims that character is produced only by college training or any
other form of education. There are illiterate women whose wills are so
steady, whose hearts are so generous, and whose spirits seem to be so
continuously refreshed that we look up to them with reverence. They have
their own fountains. It would be a mistake to suppose that because they
are "open at the outlet" they are "closed at the reservoir." But there is
a class of women who are impelled toward knowledge (as still others are
impelled toward music or art) and whose success in anything they do will
depend upon their state of mind. We ought to assume that the girls who go
to college belong to this class, however far from the springs of Helicon
they mean to march in the future. It is a terrible thing that we should
think of taking one hour of their time while they are in college for any
course that does not enrich the intellect and add to the treasury of
thoughts and ideas upon which the woman with a mind will always be
drawing. Spirit is greater than intellect, and may survive it in the
course of a long life. But in the active years, for this kind of woman,
the mental life becomes one with the spiritual. A lusty serviceableness
will issue from their union. If mental interests seem sterile, the cure,
as far as the college is concerned with it, is to deepen, not to lessen
the love of learning. The renewal of sincerity, humility and enthusiasm in
the age-old search for truth is more necessary than the introduction of
new courses, which must be applied to be of value, and which at this time
in a girl's experience, and under these conditions, can give only partial
and superficial data.

Our lives are subject to a thousand changes. In the home as well as out of
it, we shall meet, face to face, fruition and disappointment, rapture and
pain, hope and despair. In these tests of the soul's health what good will
_domestic_ science do us? Not by sanitation is sanity brought forth. Women
do not gather courage from calories, nor faith from refrigerators. But
every added milestone along the road from youth to age shows us the truth
of Cicero's claim, made after he had borne public care and known private
grief, for the faithful, homely companionship of intellectual studies:
"For other things belong neither to all times and ages nor all places; but
these pursuits feed our growing years, bring charm to ripened age, adorn
prosperity, offer a refuge and solace to adversity, delight us at home, do
not handicap us abroad, abide with us through the watches of the night, go
with us on our travels, make holiday with us in the country."

Upon women, in crucial hours, may depend the peace of the old, the fortune
of the middle-aged, the hopefulness of the young. In such an hour we do
not wish to be dismissed as were the women of Socrates's family, who had
had no part in the bright life of the Athens of which he was taking leave.
Shall we become the bread in the sacrament of life, ourselves unfed? the
fire on the hearth, ourselves unkindled?


If from almost any given point in the United States you start out towards
the Southwest, you will reach in time the Land of the Sleepless Watchdog.
On each of the scattered farms, defending it against all intruders, you
will find a band of eager and vociferous dogs--dogs who magnify their
calling because they have no other, and who, by the same token lose all
sense of proportion in life. It is "theirs not to reason why," but to put
up warnings and threats, and to be ready for the fight that never comes.

If you enter a domain without previous understanding with them, you are
powerless for mischief, for you are in the center of a publicity beside
which any other publicity is that of a hermit's cell. The whole farm knows
where you are, and all are suspicious of your predatory intentions. You
can have none under these conditions. Meanwhile the whole pack voices its
opinion of you and your unworthiness.

This is supposing that you are actually there. If you are not, it amounts
to the same thing. Every dog knows that you meant to be there, or at any
rate, that to be there was the scheme of someone equally bad. The
slightest rustle of the wind, the call of a bird, the ejaculation
responsive to a flea--any of these, anything to set the pack going.

And one pack starts the next. And the cries of the two start the third and
the fourth, and each of these reacts on the first. The cry passes along
the line, "We have him at last, the mad invader." There being no other
enemy, they cry out against each other. And of late years, since the
barbed wire choked the cattle ranges, and gave pause to the coyote, there
has been no enemy. But the dogs are there, though their function has
passed away. It is but a tradition--a remembrance. Only to the dogs
themselves does any reality exist.

Yet, such is the nature of dogs and men, the watchdog was never more
numerous nor more alert than today. He was never in better voice, and
having nothing whatever to do, he does it to the highest artistic
perfection. At least one justification remains. Civilization has not done
away with the moon. In the stillness of night, its great white face peeps
over the hills at intervals no dog has yet determined. Under this weird
light, strange shadowy forms trip across the fields. The watchdogs of each
farm have given warning, and the whole countryside is eager with

Men say the Sleepless Watchdog's bark is worse than his bite. This may be,
but it is certain that his feed is worse than both bark and bite together.
In the language of economics, the Sleepless Watchdog is an unremunerative
investment. He has "eaten his master out of house and home," and by the
same token, he imagines that he himself is now the master.

       *       *       *       *       *

By this time, the gentle but astute reader has observed that this is no
common "Dog Story," but a parable of the times we live in; and that the
real name of the Land of the Sleepless (but unremunerative) Watchdog is
indeed Europe.

And because of the noisy and costly futility of the whole system in his own
and other countries, Professor Ottfried Nippold of Frankfort-on-the-Main,
has made a special study of the Watchdogs of Germany.

The good people of the Fatherland some forty years ago were drawn into a
great struggle with their neighbors beyond the Rhine. To divert his
subjects' attention from their ills at home, the Emperor of France wagered
his Rhine provinces against those of Prussia, in the game of War. The
Emperor lost, and the King of Prussia took the stakes: for in those days
it was a divine right of Kings to deal in flesh and blood.

The play is finished, the board is cleared, Alsace and Lorraine were added
to Germany, and the mistake is irretrievable. A fact accomplished cannot
be blotted out. But hopeless as it all is, there are watchdogs who, on
moonlight nights, call across the Vosges for revenge--for honor, for War,
War, War. And the German watchdogs cry War, War, War. The word sounds the
same in all languages. The watchdogs bark, but the battle will never

It is Professor Nippold's purpose, in his little book _Der Deutsche
Chauvinismus_, to show that the clamor is not all on one side. The
watchdogs of the Paris Boulevards are noisy enough, but those of Berlin
are just the same. And as these are not all of Germany, so the others are
not all of France. A great, thrifty, honest, earnest, cultured nation does
not find its voice in the noises of the street. On the other hand,
Germany, industrious, learned, profound and brave, is busy with her own
affairs. She would harm no one, but mind her own business. But she is
entangled in mediaeval fashions. She has her own band of watchdogs, as
noisy, as futile, as unthinkingly clamorous as ever were those of France.
The "Sleepless Watchdog" in France is known as a Chauvinist, in England as
a Jingo, in Prussia as a Pangermanist. They all bay at the same moon, are
excited over the same fancies; they hear nothing, see nothing but one
another. All alike live in an unreal world, in its essentials a world of
their own creation. With all of them the bark is worse than the bite, and
their "Keep" is more disastrous than both together.

And as each nation should look after its own, Dr. Nippold
lists--blacklists if you choose--the Chauvinists of Germany.

At first glance, they make an imposing showing. A long series of
newspapers, dozens of pamphlets, categories of bold and impressive
warnings against the schemes of England and France, a set of appeals in
the name of patriotism, of religion, of force, of violence. A long-drawn
call to hate, to hate whatever is not of our own race or class; and above
all the banding together of the "noblest" profession as against the
encroachments of mere civilians, of men whose hands are soiled with other
stains than blood.

We have, first and foremost, General Keim, Keim the invincible, Keim the
insatiable, Keim of the Army-League, Keim the arch hater of England and of
Russia and of France, Keim the jewel of the fighting Junker aristocracy of
Prussia--the band of warriors who despise all common soldiers--"white
slave" conscripts, and with them all civilians, who at the best are only
potential common soldiers. "War, war, on both frontiers," is Keim's
obsessing vision. War being inevitable and salutary, it cannot come too
soon. The duty of hate, he urges on all the youth of Germany, maidens as
well as men. It is said that Keim is the only man of the day who can
maintain before an audience of Christians such a proposition as this: "We
must learn to hate, and to hate with method. A man counts little who
cannot hate to a purpose. Bismarck was hate."

From Gaston Choisy's clever character sketch of General Keim, we learn
that as a soldier or tactician, he was a man of no note. He has no ability
as a thinker or as a speaker, but this he has: "the courage of his
vulgarity." "At the age of 68, suffering from Bright's Disease, he
travelled all Germany, his great head always in ebullition, gathering
everywhere for the war-fire all the news, all the stories and all the lies
susceptible of aiding the Cause." "Without Bismarck's authority, he had
his manner--a mixture of baseness, of atrocious joviality, a studied
cynicism and a lack of conscience." "How generous are circumstances! The
spirit of Von Moltke the silent, with the speech of an _enfant terrible_,
an endless flow of language, an endless course of words."

To the Chauvinists of France, Keim is indeed Germany. As to his own
country, Von Ferlach sagely remarks: "Keims and Keimlings unfortunately
are all about us. But they are a vanishing minority." The great culture
peoples do not hate one another. ("Die grossen Kultur-volker hassen
einander nicht.")

Next on the black list, comes General Frederick von Bernhardi, with his
_Germany and the Next War_, the need to obliterate France, while giving
the needed chastisement to England. A retired officer of cavalry, said to
be disgruntled through failure of promotion, a tall, spare, serious, prosy
figure, a writer without inspiration, a speaker without force. Germany has
never taken him seriously; for he lacks even the clown-charm of his rival
Keim, but the mediaeval absurdities and serious extravagances in his
defense of war are well tempered to stir the eager watchdogs in the rival
lands. In spite of his pleas, "historical, biological and philosophical,"
for war, he is a man of peace, for which, in the words of General
Eichhorn, "one's own sword is the best and strongest pledge."

Doubtless other retired officers hold views of the same sort, as do
doubtless many who could not be retired too soon for the welfare of
Germany. Into the nature of their patriotism, the Zabern incident has
thrown a great light. "Other lands may possess an army," a Prussian
officer is quoted as saying, "the army possesses Germany."

The vanities and follies of Prussian militarism are concentrated in the
movement called Pangermanism. Behind this, there seem to be two moving
forces, the Prussian Junker aristocracy, and the financial interests which
center about the house of Krupp. The purposes of Pangermanism seem to be,
on the one hand, to prevent parliamentary government in Germany; and on
the other, to take part in whatever goes on in the world outside. Just
now, the control of Constantinople is the richest prize in sight, and that
fateful city is fast replacing Alsace in the passive role of "the
nightmare of Europe." The journalists called Conservative find that
"Germany needs a vigorous diplomacy as a supplement to her power on land
and sea, if she is to exercise the influence she deserves." And a vigorous
foreign policy is but another name for the use of the War System as a
means of pushing business. From the daily press of Germany may be culled
many choice examples of idle Jingo talk, but analysis of the papers
containing it shows their affiliation with the "extreme right," a small
minority in German politics, potent only through the indiscretions of the
Crown Prince, and through the fact that the Constitution of Germany gives
its people no control over administrative affairs. The journals of this
sort--the _Taegliche Rundschau_, the _Berliner Post_, the _Deutsche
Tageszeitung_, and the _Berliner Neueste Nachrichten_ are the property of
Junker reactionists, or else, like the _Lokal Anzeiger_, the
_Rheinisch-Westphalische Zeitung_, the organs merely of the War trade
House of Krupp. Out from the ruck of hack writers, there stands a single
imposing figure, Maximilian Harden, the "poet of German politics," who
"casts forth heroic gestures and thinks of politics in terms of aesthetics,
the prophet of a great, strong and saber-rattling nation," whose force
shall be felt everywhere under the sun.

Bloodthirsty pamphlets in numbers, are listed by Nippold. But the
anonymous writers ("Divinator," "Rhenanus," "Lookout," "Deutscher,"
"Politiker," "Activer General" and "Deutscher Officier") count for less
than nothing in personal influence. They do little more than bay at the

Impressive as Nippold's list seems at first, and dangerous to the peace of
the world, after all one's final thought is this: How few they are, and
how scant their influence, as compared with the wise, sane, commonsense of
sixty millions of German people. The two great papers that stand for peace
and sanity, the _Berliner Tageblatt_ and the _Frankfurter Zeitung_, with
the _Muenchener Neueste Nachrichten_, are read daily by more Germans than
all the reactionary sheets combined. The Socialist organ _Vorwaerts_,
avowedly opposed to monarchy as well as to militarism, carries farther
than all the organs of Pangermanism of whatever kind.

We may justly conclude that the war spirit is not the spirit of Germany, a
nation perforce military because the people cannot help themselves. So far
as it goes, it is the spirit of a narrow clique of "sleepless watchdogs"
whose influence is waning, and would be non-existent were it not for the
military organization which holds Germany by the throat, but which has
pushed the German people just as far as it dares.

A second lesson is that while forms of government, and social traditions,
may differ, the relation of public opinion towards war is practically the
same in all the countries of Western Europe. It is in its way the test of
European civilization. Each nation has its "sleepless watchdogs," and
those of one nation fire the others, when the proper war scares are set in
motion by the great unscrupulous group of those who profit by them. The
war promoters, the apostles of hate, form a brotherhood among themselves,
and their success in frightening one nation reacts to make it easier to
scare another.

This the reader may remember, as a final lesson. There is no civilized
nation which longs for war. There is nowhere a reckless populace clamoring
for blood. The schools have done away with all that. The spread of
commerce has brought a new Earth with new sympathies and new relations, in
which international war has no place.

If you are sure that your own nation has no design to use violence on any
other, you may be equally sure that no other has evil designs on you. The
German fleet is not built as a menace to England; whether it be large or
small should concern England very little. Just as little does the size of
the British fleet bear any concern to Germany. The German fleet is built
against the German people. The growth of the British army and navy has in
part the same motive. Armies and navies hold back the waves of populism
and democracy. They seem a bulwark against Socialism. But in the great
manufacturing and commercial nations, they will not be used for war,
because they cannot be. The sacrifice appalls: the wreck of society would
be beyond computation.

But still the sleepless watchdogs bark. It is all that they can do, and we
should get used to them. In our own country, whatever country it may be,
we have our own share of them, and some of them bear distinguished names.
No other nation has any more, and no nation takes them really seriously,
any more than we do. And one and all, their bark is worse than their bite,
and the cost of feeding them is doubtless worse than either.


_Special to our Readers_

Those of you who have not received your REVIEWS on time will probably now
find a double interest in the article in the last number, on _Our
Government Subvention to Literature_. In conveying periodicals so cheaply,
not only is Uncle Sam engaged in a bad job, but he is doing it cheaply,
and consequently badly, and he has more of it than he can well handle. _He
is at length carrying them as freight_, and most of you know what that
means. We are receiving complaints of delay on all sides, and an
appreciable part of the unwelcome subvention Uncle Sam is giving us, goes
in sending duplicates of lost copies. We don't acknowledge any obligation,
legal or moral, to do this; but we love our subscribers--more or less
disinterestedly--and try to do them all the kinds of good we can. Partly
to enable us to do that, as long as the subvention is given, we follow the
example of the excellent Pooh Bah, and put our pride (and the subvention)
into our pockets. Even if we did not love our subscribers so, we should
have to do the pocketing all the same, because our competitors do.
Competitors are always a very shameless sort of people.

We wish, however, that Uncle Sam would keep his subvention in his own
pocket, and so lead to a higher plane all competitors in the magazine
business, including some of those who don't want to rise to a higher
plane. The best of such a proceeding on his part would be that he would
also, through the complicated influences described in the article referred
to encourage up to a higher plane those who write for popular magazines.
Those who write for THE UNPOPULAR REVIEW are, of course, on the highest
possible plane already. This remark is made solely for the benefit of
readers taking up the REVIEW for the first time. To others it is
superfluous, and if there is anything we try to avoid, it is, as we have
so many times to tell volunteer contributors, superfluities. Even
popularity we do not try to avoid, but--!

The foregoing paragraph was written with little thought of what was coming
to be added to it. You and we have something to be proud of. Our REVIEW
has been doing its part in saving all Europe from the waste of hundreds of
millions of money, and the literatures of all Europe from a degradation
like that through which our own is passing. Read the following letter:

    Dear Mr. [Editor]:

    I have already sent a line through ---- thanking you for the copy
    of THE UNPOPULAR REVIEW, which you were good enough to send me,
    but I should like to repeat my thanks to you again direct, and at
    the same time, tell you how the REVIEW has been of service to
    European publishers.

    The article in the last number entitled _Our Government Subvention
    to Literature_ naturally interested me very much from a personal
    point of view, but the statistics you give showing the effect of
    second class matter rate on book sales was very valuable to me as
    the representative of the English Publishers on the Executive
    Committee of the International Publishers Congress.

    At the Congress held at Budapest last June, a resolution was
    adopted instructing the Congress to press for a reduced rate of
    postage on periodicals, and an international stamp. The steps to
    be taken in order to carry out this resolution were discussed at
    the meeting of the Committee last week held at Leipzig, when I
    produced the copy of your article, and gave the Committee a
    summary of the statistics. The result was the unanimous decision
    to take no further steps in the matter.

    I tremble to think of what might have happened if I had not had
    your article before me, for the point of view which you have put
    forward was one that had not occurred to anyone else connected
    with the Congress, and if the resolution had not been cut out at
    this last meeting of the Executive Committee, it would have gone
    before the Postal Conference which is to be held in Madrid this
    autumn, backed by practically every European country.

    I feel we all owe you a debt of gratitude for bringing out the
    facts so clearly, and believe that you will like to know what has
    taken place.

While we are not slow to take all the credit that our supporters and
ourselves are entitled to in this matter, we should be very slow tacitly
to accept the lion's share of it, which is due to Colonel C.W. Burrows of
Cleveland, who supplied all of the facts and nearly all of the expression
of the article in question, and who has for years, lately as President of
the One Cent Letter Postage League, been devoting himself with unsparing
energy and self-sacrifice to stopping the waste of money and capacity that
the mistaken outbreak of paternalism we are discussing has brought upon
the country.

Demos is a good fellow--when he behaves himself, and that generally means
when he is not abused or flattered; but how supremely ridiculous, not to
say destructive, he is when he gets to masquerading in the robes of the
scholar or the judge; and how criminal is the demagogue who seeks personal
aggrandisement by dangling those robes before him.

       *       *       *       *       *

Our modesty has been so anesthetized by the preceding letter, that it
permits us to show you, in strict confidence of course, a paragraph from
another. A new subscriber, apparently going it blind on the recommendation
of a friend, writes:

    "I am told it is the best gentleman's magazine in the United

Now, somehow, "gentleman" is a word that we are very chary of using. We
couldn't put that remark on an advertising page, but perhaps there is no
inconsistency in putting it here, and confessing that we like it--and that
we even suspect that we have always had a subconscious idea that it was
just what we were after--that it includes, or ought to include, about
everything that we are trying to accomplish. In any interpretation, it is
certainly an encouragement to keep pegging away.

       *       *       *       *       *

Most of our readers probably remember a letter on pp. 432-3 of the
_Casserole_ of the April-June number, from an individual who thought we
were trying to humbug the wage-receiving world into a false and dangerous
contentment with existing conditions. This inference was probably drawn
from our insistent promulgation of the belief that a man's fortune depends
more upon himself than upon his conditions.

As a contrast to that remarkable letter, it is a great pleasure to call
attention to the following still more remarkable one. It is from a
printer--not one in our employ.

    I wish to congratulate you on the excellence of the REVIEW, both
    from a literary and mechanical standpoint. As a "worker," "a
    member of the Union," it might be inferred that I endorse the
    views of the critics given on page 432 of the second number. Not
    so. It is such views as his that harm the unthinking--those who
    think capital is the emblem of wickedness.

    I believe that individual merit and worth are the only things
    worth while. The workman who puts his best efforts into his labor,
    and takes a personal pride in making his productions as nearly
    perfect as possible, will be recognized, and his individual worth
    to his employer will raise him above the "common level." All this
    rot about a "ruling oligarchy" "grinding down the poorer class" is
    dangerous. The man who has no ambition above ditch digging, and
    who endeavors to throw out as little dirt in a day as he possibly
    can, will always be one of "the submerged." It lies with each
    one--outside of unavoidable physical or mental
    infirmities--whether he shall rise or sink.

    Again I must congratulate you on the stand you are taking in THE
    UNPOPULAR REVIEW. I "take" and read twenty to twenty-five
    magazines and for over forty years have been trying to educate
    myself to a right way of thinking, and the result is I believe as
    above briefly outlined.

    Especially good is _The Greeks on Religion and Morals_, also _The
    Soul of Capitalism, Trust-Busting as a National Pastime_, and _Our
    Government Subvention to Literature_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Possibly some of you are disappointed at not finding this number as full
as the daily papers of wisdom on War and the Mexican situation. In one
sense we are disappointed ourselves: for we had made arrangements for at
least one article of that general nature from one of our best qualified
contributors; but when it came time to write it (speaking by the
calendar), he showed the excellence of his qualifications by saying that,
considering the situation and the function of this REVIEW, it was _not_
time--that the situation had not yet become mature enough or broad enough
for any general conclusions--for any treatment beyond that already well
given by the newspapers and other organs of frequent publication, and that
they were giving all the details called for. We will wait, then, and try
to philosophize when the time comes.

We find, however, that with little deliberate intention on our part, this
number has turned out "seasonable" in another sense, and hope you will
find it so. Witness the articles on _Chautauqua_, and _Railway Junctions_,
and _Tips_ (entitled _A Stubborn Relic of Feudalism_) and several others.

_Philosophy in Fly Time_

In the old days, before the destruction of the white pines removed the
chief source of American inventiveness--the universal habit of
whittling--every boy had a jackknife, and also had boxes, sometimes of
wood, sometimes of writing paper, in which he kept flies. Now he has
neither flies nor jackknife.

Then, when he wanted a fly, nine times out of ten he could catch one with
a sweep of the hand. That was before the fly was charged with an amount of
bad deeds, if they really were as bad as represented, which would have
destroyed the human race long before the plagues of Egypt; or if not
before the fly plague, would have caused that plague to leave no Egyptians
alive to enjoy the later ones. With these new opinions of the fly, began a
crusade against him; and now the boys can't have any more fun with
him--that is, only good boys can--the kind that catch him with illusive
traps, for a cent a hundred. The other kind of boys may occasionally be
sports enough to hunt him with the swatter; but it's pretty poor hunting:
for the game is so shy that generally before you get within reach of him,
he is off: so swatting him is difficult, while catching him by hand, as we
boys used to, is virtually impossible.

Now for some questions profound enough to befit our pages. (I) Have only a
select group of very alert and quick flies survived? or (II) Have the
flies told each other that that big clumsy brute with only two legs to
walk on, and two aborted ones which do all sorts of foolish things--the
brute with only one lens to an eye (though he sometimes puts a glass one
over it) and a pitifully aborted proboscis--the brute that has no wings,
and can't get ahead more than about once his own length in a second--that
this clumsy brute had at last got so jealous of the six legs,
hundred-lensed eyes, proboscis, wings and speed of the fly, that he had
started a new crusade against him, and must be specially avoided?

Then, after it is ascertained whether the timidity of the flies is because
this story has been passed around among them, or only because men have
already killed off all but the specially quick and timid ones; we hope our
investigators may find an answer to the farther question: (III) How, if a
tenth of what some folks say against flies is true, the human race has so
long survived?

To avoid misapprehension, it should be added that despite the
availability, in our boyhood, of flies as playmates, we don't like 'em,
especially when they light on our hands to help us write articles for this

_Setting Bounds to Laughter_

That there is even a measure of personal liberty on the earth, is one of
our most pointed proofs that the universe is governed by design. For
liberty is loved neither by the many nor by the few; its defense has
always been unpopular in the extreme, and can be manfully undertaken only
in an age of moral heroism. The present is no heroic age, and hence our
personal rights fall one by one, without defense, and apparently without
regret. The losses thus incurred must be left to future historians to
weigh and to lament. There is, however, one of our natural rights, now
cruelly beset by its enemies, that is too precious to surrender to the
threnodies of the future historians. This is the right to laugh.

It is scarcely a quarter of a century since the first appearance of
organized efforts to curb the spirit of laughter. All good men and women
were hectored into believing that one should weep, not laugh, over the
absurdities of men in their cups. Next, we were warned that it is unseemly
and unChristian to laugh at a fellow-man's discomfiture--an awkward social
situation, a sermon or a political oration wrecked by stage fright, or a
poem spoilt by a printer's stupidity. Under shelter of the dogma that to
laugh at the ridiculous is unlawful, there have recently grown into vigor
multitudinous anti-laughter alliances, racial, national and professional.
Not many years ago a censorship of Irish jokes was established, and this
was soon followed by an index expurgatorious of Teutonic jokes. Our
colored fellow citizens promptly advanced the claim that jokes at the
expense of their race are "in bad taste"; and country life enthusiasts
solemnly affirmed that the rural and suburban jokes are nothing short of
national disasters. A recent press report informs us that the suffragette
joke has been excluded from the vaudeville circuits throughout the
country. And the movement grows apace. Domestic servants, stenographers,
politicians, college professors, and clergymen are organizing to establish
the right of being ridiculous without exciting laughter.

But what does it all matter? What is laughter but an old-fashioned aid to
digestion, more or less discredited by current medical authority? It is
time we learned that laughter has a social significance: it is the first
stage in the process of understanding one's fellow man. Professor Bergson
to the contrary notwithstanding, you can not laugh with your intellect
alone. An essential element of your laughter is sympathy. You can not
laugh at an idiot, nor at a superman. You can not laugh at a Hindoo or a
Korean; you can hardly force a smile to your lips over the conduct of a
Bulgar, a Serb, or a Slovak. You are beginning to find something comic in
the Italian, because you are beginning to know him. And all the world
laughs at the Irishman, because all the world knows him and loves him.

When Benjamin Franklin walked down the streets of Philadelphia, carrying a
book under his arm, and munching a crust of bread, just one person
observed him, a rosy maiden, who laughed merrily at him. As our old school
readers narrated, with naive surprise, this maiden was destined to become
Franklin's faithful wife. And yet psychology should have led us to expect
such a result. The stupidest small boy making faces or turning somersaults
before the eyes of his pig-tailed inamorata, evidences his appreciation of
the sentimental value of the ridiculous. When did we first grant some
small corner in our hearts to the Chinese? It was when we were introduced
to Bret Harte's gambler:

  For ways that are dark and tricks that are vain,
  The heathen Chinee is peculiar.

The natural history of the racial or professional joke is easily written.
At the outset it is crude and cruel, wholly at the expense of the group
represented. In time the world wearies of an unequal contest, and we have
a new order of jokes, in which the intended victim acquits himself well.
This, too, gives way to a higher order, in which race, nationality or
profession is employed merely as a cloak for common humanity. The
successive stages mark the progress in assimilation, induced, in large
measure, by laughter. There is no other social force so potent in creating
mutual understanding and practical fraternity of spirit; in establishing
the essential unity of mankind underneath its phenomenal diversity.
Setting bounds to laughter: why, this is to indenture the angel of charity
to the father of lies and the lord of hate.

_A Post Graduate School for Academic Donors_

At a recent meeting of an University Montessori Club the case of donors to
colleges and universities was reported on by a special committee. The
majority report drew a pretty heavy indictment. It was shown that the
givers to colleges and universities seldom considered the real needs of
their beneficiaries. Donors liked to give expensive buildings without
endowment for upkeep, liked to give vast athletic fields, rejoiced in
stadiums, affected memorial statuary and stained glass windows, dabbled in
landscape gardening, but seldom were known either to give anything
unconditionally or, specifically, to destine a gift for such uninspiring
needs as more books or professors' pay. The result of giving without first
considering the needs of the benefited college or university, was that
every gift made the beneficiary more lopsided. Certain universities were
almost capsized by their incidental architecture. Others were subsidizing
graduate students to whom the conditions of successful research were
denied. Still others were calling great specialists to the teaching force
without providing the apparatus for the pursuit of these specialties.
Others preferred to offer financial aid to students who were poor--in
every sense. Donors apparently without exception had single-track minds.
They saw plainly enough what they wanted to give, but never took the pains
to see the donation in its relation to the institution as a whole. The
majority report, which was drawn by our famous Latinist, Professor
Claudius Senex, concluded with the despairing note _Timeo Danaos et dona
ferentes_. The minority report was delivered orally by young Simpson Smith
of the department of banking and finance. He "allowed" that everything
alleged by the majority report was true, but saw no use in dwelling on
such truths, since donors always had done and always would do just as they
darned pleased.

The Club took a more hopeful view of the case, and it was voted that our
Club should resolve itself into the trustees and faculty of a Post
Graduate School for Academic Donors. Our committee recommended that we
qualify our advanced students by conferring the lower degree of Heedless
Donor (H.D.) every year upon all givers who can be shown to have given at
random. No method of instruction seemed more appropriate than the seminar
plan of practical exercises based on concrete instances. The first
laboratory experiment was performed in the presence of a Seminar of seven
H.D.'s. in a specially called meeting of married professors attired only
in bath gowns borrowed from the crews and base ball teams. Into this
assembly the class of H.D.'s was suddenly introduced. They naturally
inquired into the meaning of the spectacle, and were informed that in no
case did the mere salary of these professors enable them to wear clothes
at all. "But you do usually wear clothes?" inquired a student of a
favorite professor. "How do you get them?" "By University extension
lecturing at ten dollars a lecture" was the quiet answer. Another
professor explained that he got his clothes by tutoring dull students,
another by book reviewing. One somewhat shamefacedly said the clothes came
from his wife's money. One declined to answer, and, as a matter of fact,
his clothes are habitually first worn by a more fortunate elder brother.

On the whole the results of our first seminary exercise were satisfactory.
One student immediately drew a considerable check for the salary fund,
another, who had been planning to give a hockey rink, said he would think
things over. Still a third deposited forty pairs of slightly worn trousers
with the university treasurer, "for whom it might concern." Only one
accepted the demonstration contentedly. He admitted that low pay and extra
work were hard on the Professors, but he also felt that these outside
activities advertised the university and were good business. Of course you
wore out some professors in the process, but you could always get others.

Our second seminary exercise was of a less spectacular sort. The post
graduate donors were each provided with a bibliography. This in every
instance contained the titles of books that a particular professor or
graduate student in the university would need to consult for his studies
of the ensuing week. It was briefly explained by Professor Senex that
original research could not be successfully accomplished without reference
to all the original sources and to the writings of other scholars. The
bibliographies ran from ten titles or so to nearly a hundred, according to
the nature of the particular research involved. The exercise consisted in
going to the university library and matching these titles of desiderata
with the books actually in the catalogue. After varying intervals, the
post graduate donors returned with their report. Nobody had found more
than half the books sought for: many had found less.

The effect of this demonstration was interesting. The donor who had tended
towards the hockey rink, instead transferred his $100,000 to the book
purchase fund. He said he guessed the old place needed real books more
than it needed artificial ice. Others followed his example according to
their ability.

The student who was satisfied with our bath robe faculty meeting, came
back from the library equally pleased. He had not compared his
bibliography with the catalogue, but a brief general inspection had
convinced him that there were already more books in the library than
anybody could read. His intention held firm to give his Alma Mater a tower
higher than any university tower on record and containing a chime of bells
that periodically played the college song. The tower was naturally to bear
his name, which was also his dear mother's.

_A Suggestion Regarding Vacations_

Why wouldn't it be well for the country colleges to shorten their summer
vacations, and lengthen their winter ones? Then urban students would not,
for so long a period in summer, be put to their trumps to find out what to
do with themselves; and, what is more important, in winter both faculty
and students would have increased opportunity for metropolitan experience.
In the summer vacations, the cities are empty of music, drama, and most
else of what makes them distinctively worth while. Intellectually, the
country needs the city at least as much as, morally, the city needs the


We are disposed to do a little gratuitous advertising for good causes.
Below is the first essay. It is perfectly genuine. Please send us some

_Help Wanted._ From a young gentleman of education, leisure and energy,
who desires to devote a part of his time, in connection with scholars and
philanthropists, to a reform of world-wide importance. Such a person may
possibly learn of a congenial opportunity by addressing.



A few hundred persons of the kind whose help is sought by this
advertisement would have the salvation of the republic in their hands. But
somehow those who have the leisure generally lack the desire; and those
who have the desire generally lack the leisure.

_Simplified Spelling_

After receiving, in answer to the invitation in our first number, a few
bitter objections to simplified spelling, we have felt like apologizing
each time we approached the subject. Perhaps the best apology we can make
is that apparently the majority of our readers are interested in it.
Therefore we hope that the others will tolerate as equably as they can,
the devotion of a little space to it in the interest of the majority.
Perhaps the objectors may ultimately be able to settle the difficulty as
we and our house have settled another unconquerable nuisance--the
dandelions on our lawns--: we have concluded to like them.

Our recent correspondence regarding Simplified Spelling has developed a
few points which we submit to those who abominate it, those who favor it,
and those who, like the eminent school-superintendent we have already
quoted, and like ourselves for that matter, do both:

To a leading Professor of Greek:

    I am more hopeful than you that the repetition of a consonant
    beginning the second syllable of a dissyllable, to close the
    preceding syllable, as in "differ", "fiddle", "gobble", etc.,
    _wil_ "be generally accepted", especially in view of the fact that
    it is _alreddy_ "generally accepted", and needs only to be
    extended to a minority of words.

    "Annutther" is not "a fair illustration". On the contrary, it is
    an exception that I probably was very injudicious to call any
    attention to; and the trouble with you scholars, I find all the
    way thru, is that you permit those little exceptions to influence
    you too much. If a good simplification is ever effected, it will
    be by cutting Gordian knots, and you all of you seem absolutely
    incapable of anything of the kind. I don't expect anyhow to make
    much out of a man who will spell "peepl" "peopl". Imagine all this
    said with a grin, not a frown!!

    You wil never get back to "the old sounds" of the vowels, in God's

    As to the long sounds, I am going in for all I am worth on the
    double vowels. I alreddy agree with the English Society on
    "faather", "feel" and "scuul", and am going to do all I can for
    _niit_, and for spredding the _oo_ in _floor_ and _door_ into
    _snore_, _more_, _hole_, _poke_, etc. "Awl", "cow" and "go" are
    spelt wel, and their spelling shoud be spred. These seem to be the
    lines of least resistance. I find that they work first-rate in my
    own riting.

    You make enuf serious objections to diacritical marks, but my
    serious objection to them is that they ar obstacles to lerners,
    especially forreners.

From his answer:

    All right; I catch the grin, and cheerfully grin back. The
    business of a scholar (Emerson's "man thinking", Plato's [Greek:
    philosophos]) is to take as long views as he can; in this case, to
    look far beyond the possibilities of my life-time. The more you
    people with the shorter views, as I venture to think them, agitate
    for and practise each little partial solution, the more you help
    on the threshing out which must go on for many years before we can
    arrive at any general solution. So, more power to your elbow!

    Meantime my own spelling will continue to be--like the
    conventional spelling of the printers of today--a hodge-podge of
    inconsistencies, quite indefensible on rational grounds, and
    varying with circumstances. Of course the rational way to spell
    _people_ is _piipl_, or _pipl_.

Which we think is an attempt to bolster up a lost cause.

From another reader:

    Your closing sentence in the first number of THE UNPOPULAR REVIEW
    states with a most distressing combination of vowels and
    outlandish collocation of consonants that you would like to hear
    from your readers on the subject.... Z is not a pretty letter, and
    to see it so frequently usurping the place so long held by s is
    far from gratifying to the eye....

    Suppose you establish to your own satisfaction a method for
    assigning sound values; how will you reach the differences in
    vowel sounds that prevail in the United States? The New
    Englander's mouthing of _a_ differs from that of the Northern New
    Yorker, and both differ greatly from that of the
    Southerner--indeed, in the different Southern States there is
    variation.... At first I was interested in simplified spelling,
    but the eccentricities developed by its advocates alienated me
    long since, so I beg of you, drop it.

From our answer:

    I delayed thanking you for your letter of the 29th until there
    should be time for you to see the April-June number.

    I hope you are feeling better now.

    If you are not, I do not think I can do much to console you,
    because when a man has been irritated into that position where the
    alleged beauty of a letter counts in so serious a question, he is
    probably beyond mortal help.

    I have no desire "to reach the differences in vowel sounds that
    prevail in the United States". There is not much difference among
    cultivated people. Probably a fair standard would be the
    conversation at the Century Club, where there are visitors from
    Maine to California, and hardly any noticeable difference in

    There seems to be no disagreement among authorities that a
    simplified spelling would save a great deal of time among

    Of course I have not been able to answer most of the letters I
    have received on the subject. I single yours out because you have
    had a fall from grace, and I feel guilty of having had something
    to do with it, by presenting stronger meat than was necessary, in
    our January number. I have fought on the Executive Committee of
    the Spelling Board against publishing anything of the English
    S.S.S.'s proposed improvements, for fear of arousing such
    prejudice as yours; and yet in our first number, I was insensibly
    led into, myself, publishing things that looked just as

    As I said at the outset, I hope you feel better since seeing the
    April-June number, and should be glad to know how you do feel.

From his reply:

    Thank you very much for the courtesy of your letter of 9th April.
    I was surprised to receive it, as I did not suppose that your
    multifarious duties would permit you to notice my rather feeble
    protest. I was somewhat amused that you should think my irritation
    so extreme as to call for an effort to console me. I am sure I
    appreciate your attempt to do so. But really, I was not so hard
    hit as you thought, because I do not expect in my day (I am no
    longer a young man) to see the champions of "simplified spelling"
    (some of it seems to me the reverse of "simplified") gain such
    headway as to materially mar my pleasure in the printed page, for
    I do not believe you will allow the atrocities of the last few
    pages of your first number to creep into the delightful essays
    which render THE UNPOPULAR REVIEW such pleasant and profitable

    I do not think any great respect is due the opinion of those who
    think that a simplified spelling would save a great deal of time
    among children, for it also seems to have its rules which will
    present as much difficulty to memorize as do the peculiarities of
    our present system....

    Why _thru_? U does not always have the sound of double _o_--very
    rarely in fact. Why not _throo_--if the aim is to make the written
    sign correspond to the sound. Thru suggests _huh_.

From our answer:

    Regarding "thru", you justly say that _u_ does not always have the
    sound of _oo_. The only sound of _oo_ worthy of respect, with
    which I have an acquaintance, is in "door" and "floor". The idea
    of using it to represent a _u_ sound is perhaps the culminating
    absurdity of our spelling.

    Your statement that simplified spelling "seems to have its rules
    which will present as much difficulty to memorize as do the
    peculiarities of our present system" overlooks the advantage that
    writing with a phonetic alphabet, like those of Europe, has over
    writing with purely conventional characters, as in China. Now
    English writing is probably the least phonetic in Europe.
    Simplifying it in any of the well-known proposed methods would be
    making it more phonetic, and consequently easier. At present it is
    a mass of contradictions, and the rules that can be extracted from
    it are overburdened with exceptions. Simplification will decrease
    both the exceptions and the rules themselves. There are now
    several ways of representing each of many sounds, and therefore
    several "rules" to be learned for each of such sounds.
    Simplification will tend to reduce those rules to one for each
    sound, and so far as it succeeds, will _not_ "present as much
    difficulty to memorize as do the peculiarities of our present

All the degrees of reformed spelling now in use are professedly but
transitional. They may gradually advance into a respectable degree of
consistency, but we expect that to be reached quicker by a coherent
survival among the warring elements proposed by the S.S.S., the S.S.B. and
the better individual reformers. Probably there is already more agreement
than disagreement among these elements.

While the others are fighting it out, the various transition styles will
do something to prepare parents to accept a more nearly perfect style for
their children, and perhaps take an interest in seeing the various
counsels of perfection fight each other.

A few words have already found their way into advertisements--_tho_,
_thru_, _thoro_ (a damnable way of spelling _thurro_), and the shortened
terminal _gram(me)s_, _og(ue)s_ and _et(te)s_; and these and a few more
have found their way into correspondence on commonplace subjects; and the
interest in the topic, especially among educators, is spreading. But most
of the inconsistencies will probably bother and delay children and
forreners until they are given something with some approach to

       *       *       *       *       *

After we fight to something like agreement on a system, how are we to get
it going?

It does not seem extravagant to expect that as soon as the weight of
scholarly opinion endorses a vocabulary from our present alphabet
consistent enough to afford a base for a reasonable spelling book,
spelling books and readers will be prepared for the schools, and adopted
by advanced teachers. Many are clamoring for such now. When the youngsters
have mastered these, which they will do in a small fraction of the time
wasted on their present books, they will of their own accord pick up
without troubling their teachers a knowledge of the present forms. This
they have always done when their teaching has been by the various phonetic
methods with special letters, and have done both in much less time than
they have needed for learning in the ordinary way. But they will prefer
the reasonable forms, and this demand the publishers will probably not be
slow to supply.

End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of The Unpopular Review, Volume II Number
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