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ranging from those that are so near to instinctive tendencies that they
spring up like weeds in the uncultivated areas of gang life, random com-
panionship, and oppressed "small groups," to others so catholic and fine
that only a few chosen spirits are ever capable of realizing them.

The implications of the unqualified words "teach loyalty" are often
obvious, of course, to the critical reader or hearer. But they do untold
mischief among the uncritical, since they give specious support to faith
in educational panaceas or "simples." "Boy Scouting," for example,
evokes and develops in admirable fashion certain characteristic species
of loyalty to fellows, town, country, king, and God. It is naturally com-
forting to believe that these automatically give rise to others especially
useful in adult life, such as loyalty to employers, to minority causes, and
to esthetic ideals. In the absence of evidence, it is easy and natural to
claim that well developed loyalty to one thing of good repute means loyal-
ties to all other things of "good repute." But in practical life we are
seldom seriously tempted to disloyalties, except when conflict of loyalties,
all to things of good repute, comes. As long as loyalty to wife, mother,
partner, and king involves no conflicts, the course is smooth. But prac-
tically they do come into conflict, they clash, and that which has been
most prepared for (by instinct in part, and by training in part) wins.

Sociology finds life full of practical situations wherein one kind of
toleration defeats another ; one kind of cooperation a second ; and justice
to one set of factors means injustice to another. A man may be dili-
gent in doing the devil's work no less than in doing God's ; just as his
kindliness in one set of relationships may unavoidably entail cruelty in

For practical purposes in civic education, therefore, it is desirable that
the practice be adopted of designating civic virtues by terms significant
of the actual relationship affected, after which it may become prac-
ticable to evaluate the dififerent species comparatively and to determine
mutually opposed or concurrent elements. The phrases "loyalty to God,"
"loyalty to country," "loyalty to father and mother," "loyalty to chum,"
and "loyalty to ideals of personal honor" are all descriptive enough for


practical purposes. Probahh- all terms that have come to possess varied
connotations should be similarly scrutinized and given differentiation

The educational situation here discussed is obviously closely paralleled
bv that revealed a few years ago in connection w^ith widespread criticism
of the so-called doctrine of formal discipline. It had long been cus-
tomary freely to employ a variety of "omnibus" terms to denote aggre-
gates of more or less similar qualities. Thus we spoke of powers or
faculties of observation, accuracy, imagination, concentration, judgment,
inference, common sense, retentiveness (of memory), and the like. In
somewhat similar spirit, it was customary to generalize about enthusiasm,
"pep," moral purpose, hopefulness, "gumption," "sand," and numberless

Well informed speakers perhaps make few mistakes in using these
terms. Discussing concrete situations, they usually limit their terms to
these situations automatically. But educators, seeking new orientations
of objectives, encounter pitfalls. Perceiving that certain specific exercises
tax in particular ways powers of observation, concentration, or reasoning,
they deceive themselves and others by allowing the naive conclusion to
spread that the "faculties" of observation, concentration, and reasoning
are respectively being "trained."


For purposes of practical civic diagnosis the citizenry of this country
can be broken up into an indefinite number of case-groups, within each
of which certain civic assets and shortages will be found to be "prevailing."

Take, for example, "women school teachers, ages twenty-one to thirty."
A few of these may be very unintelligent, immoral, or anarchistic. But they
are not "prevailingly" so. Most of us would agree that they are prevail-
ingly" intelligent, well disposed, moral, law-abiding, and in a kind of way
altruistic. What are their "civic shortages" as a class? Certainly not in
disposition to evade or break laws — they are usually good conformists.
How are they as respects the virtues of "leadership" ? Are they critical of
misgovernment ? Are they reformers ? In case of war they would manifest
their patriotism in scores of ways — that is, they would follow readily
and patriotically the forces of law and order and strong nationalism.
Obviously, we can only diagnose their civic shortages in terms of ex-
pectations reasonably to be entertained as Ijo persons of their sex, age,
experience, and natural abilities. What are these? We possess no sci-


entific analysis yet that is adequate. We often let Utopians tell what
these persons "should be and do." Possibly that process is a good method
of producing ideals.

What of the civic qualities of these case-groups :

a. Negroes, men, unmarried, having migrated from the South to North-
ern cities, and now from thirty to fifty years of age?

b. Immigrant Russian Jews, men from thirty to fifty?

c. College graduates, men, from thirty-five to sixty years of age, in
business ?

d. Artisan workers in highly organized trade unions ?

e. Married women living in comfortable homes in suburbs?

/. Colored women, ages twenty-five to forty, of less than average in-
telligence, and of inferior economic position, in cities like Baltimore, Pitts-
burgh, and Philadelphia?

Case-groups could be multiplied. But as respects each it will ultimately
be necessary to study, not only their civism in general, but specific qualities
in it. What of the "American aspirations" of the Russian Jews? What
of the actual knowledge of economic issues possessed by the negro manual
workers? What about the "self-sacrificing" characteristics of "college
men in business"?


On the assumption that departmental teachers of civic education will
be provided for pupils upward of twelve years of age, the following are
some of the problems that these teachers will encounter :

I. To what extent can departmental teachers promote and iitilize school
government as a means of civic education? More particularly, (a) is it
desirable that school government as a means of civic education be always
used, or may it not prove more profitable to use it for short periods,
during which its difficulties and its values may be appreciated by the
learners, without imposing upon the school faculty the burden of keeping
school self-government active at all times? Compare these problems with
those of citizens temporarily taking charge of the maintenance of order,
cooperative marketing, street cleaning, or some other collective function
that under ordinary circumstances would be left to special agencies, (b)
It should be noted that school self-government consists of several aspects :
first, compliance with the rules and order of the school on the part
of pupils; second, the detection of violations and dealing with offenders;
third, the initiation of new approved policies. Normally, pupils in large


schools might well be spared responsibilities for these latter, except at
stated intervals when possibilities can be demonstrated. It should be
remembered that, except in mystical pedagogy, the school group is a very
limited and specialized social group, both from the standpoints of com-
pliance with laws and rules, and also from the i.tandpoint of initiating

2. To what extent can the teacher be expected to promote civic dra-
matic, exploratory, and participation activities or projects? All of these
offer important opportunities for civic education, but some of them clearly
still make excessive demands upon time, energy, inventiveness, and powers
of control both of teachers and pupils. The solution, obviously, is to
have in clearly defined form (as now in "Scouting education") a very wide
range of possible opportunities amply described, so that groups of students
ready for vital experience can be given charge of the execution of projects
fairly well within their reach, and not requiring too much of the teacher's
time and energy.

3. To what extent can civic education be effected through the organiza-
tion of civic service or other projects? Three of the groups of means
of civic education (dramatic activities, participation projects, and ex-
ploration) lend themselves readily to the project form of organization.
The essence of this method requires that there should be available for
any individual or prepared group a wide range of projects from which
they can choose.

4. The teacher of the social sciences will encounter many problems of
"freedom of teaching." He will frequently be brought into conflict with
prevailing social attitudes, sometimes on the part of majorities, but more
often on the part of minorities. It will not prove easy for such a teacher
to steer between the extremes of avoiding all references to controversial
questions or of appearing to be a partizan of factional doctrines, beliefs,
or attitudes.

5. The social philosophy of the teacher will be subject to some vicissi-
tudes. He may find difficulty in interpreting the significance of the state
as a social agency.

a. It will readily be assumed that the state aids and supports the ex-
istence of the millions of people who are its servants. On the other
hand —

h. The people exist and support the state, which is their instrumentality
for achieving certain ends. Using the term "society" as the most inclusive
designation of the people in any area and time, then the state may be


interpreted as one of the numerous groups into which society develops
and through which society works.

c. The essence of the state Hes in government, and the significance of
its government is that normally it applies to all of the persons resident
within a given area, whether they wish it or not. Government in modern
life everywhere tends to multiply functions, and is often accompanied by
the decay of custom. Government rests increasingly upon law.

The anarchist is against all laws. He thinks a society of ideal men
and women would need no laws. But the anarchist is too prone to asso-
ciate laws with penalties and unpleasant coercions. . A constantly increas-
ing proportion of modern laws consist simply of specific directions for
orderly and safe procedure. They represent what in very simple societies
could safely be left to custom. Statutes prescribing methods of land
transfer, licensing for marriage or particular forms of business, regu-
lating traffic and the sale of dangerous articles, and the like, are simply
detailed directions which all reasonable persons are willing to accept.
In many such statutes, penalties for non-compliance are simply in the
nature of after-thoughts.

6. The large opportunities for civic education probably lie in the
area of adolescence — let us say, the six school years from twelve to
eighteen. Prior to this time our children are in, but not of, the larger
social groups, in any vital sense. They are active in the family, but not
in the party. They participate in the congregation, but not in the church.
They are of the primary neighborhood, but only vaguely in the county,
municipality, state, or nation. They appreciate local economic exchanges
and services, but they only vaguely apprehend what passes outside their
personal contacts. They take large social relationships for granted, often
quite incuriously, as they take air, the hills, the rain, and railroads for

But during adolescence our children's worlds expand rapidly. Their
tendencies now are strongly centrifugal. Even in games intergroup com-
petitions now make strong appeal. In the history of the race, boys of
sixteen have been deemed old enough to take part in military campaigns.
Hundreds of boys hardly over fourteen played various roles in the Ameri-
can Civil War.^

Experience and development bring our adolescents rapidly to the stage
where they can appreciate and share in adult activities — as is now evi-

^ An interesting picture can be found in an autobiographical story prepared for
use in schools by C. W. Bardeen.


deiiccd in sucli studies as mathematics, i")ractical arts, pre-vocational sci-
ence, and in travel. Here are the really great opportunities for civic
education in schools.


Add.\ms, J.\ne. Democracy and Social Ethics (Ch. 6, Educational

Atiiearn, W. S. TJic Church School.
Bagley, W. C. Educational Values (Ch. 15, School Environment as a

Source of Educational Values).
Baldwin, J. M. Social and Ethical Interpretation (Ch. 2, The Social

BuRCH, H. R. and Patterson, S. H. American Social Problems (Ch.

24, Moral Progress).
CoE, G. A. A Social Theory of Religions Education (Ch. 5, The Aims

of Christian Education).
Dewey, J. and Tufts, J. H. Ethics (Ch. i and 2, Early Group Life

and Morality; Ch. 19, The Virtues).
FouiLLEE, A. Education from a National Standpoint (Ch. i, 2, Book

V, Moral and Social Education).
GiLLiN, J. L. Poverty and Dependency (Ch. 33-34, Socialized Education

and Recreation).
GuLiCK, L. H. Popular Recreation and Public Morality.
Hall, G. S. Youth (Ch. 12, Moral and Religious Training).
Hart, J. K. Community Organisation (Ch. 4, The Function of the Social

Sciences; Ch. 5, The Democratic Ideal).
Haworth, p. L. America in Ferment (Ch. 12, Our Defective Citizen-
Jenks, J. W. Citizenship and the Schools (Ch. i and 2).
Johnston, C. H. The Modern High School (Ch. 21, The High School

as a Social Center).
King, I. Education for Social Efficiency (Ch. 2, The Social Aim of

Nash, H. S. Genesis of the Social Conscience (Ch. 7, The Creation of

the Reformer's Conscience).
Nietzsche, F. A Genealogy of Morals (First Essay, Good and Evil;

Second Essay, Bad Conscience).
O'Shea, M. V. Social Development and Education (Part I, Genesis of

Social Attitudes).


RuGH, C. E. Moral Training in Public Schools.

Spencer, H. Education (Ch. 3, Moral Education).

Sumner, W. G. FolkuKiys (Ch. 11, The Social Codes; Ch. 15, the

Mores Can Make Anything Right).
Wallace, A. R. Social Emnronmcnt and Moral Progress.
Wells, H. G. Tlic Social Forces (pp. 390-397, The Ideal Citizen; pp.

397-415, Some Possible Discoveries).



ALL human beings, after infancy, possess interests, .tastes, and in-
sights that have httle or no relationship to their physical, vocational,
moral, civic, or religious needs or activities. Small children are naturally
eager to explore their environments, to hear tales of the past, and to
unravel the intricacies of the machines about them. These desires expand,
difterentiate, and take new directions throughout life. The adults among
whom we live are found frequently listening to gossip, reading papers,
attending the theater, traveling abroad, and reading books. The large
majority of these activities lie quite outside, and unconnected with, their
vocations ; and only occasionally and incidentally do they affect the health
and civic activities of these citizens.

All our associates possess these cultural interests and attainments in
one form or another and in greater or less degree. Each one of us
is capable of deriving some sociological interpretations through answers
to questions like these :

1. Some of your associates regularly read the Saturday Evening Post.
Others are indifferent to that journal, but regularly read the Atlantic Monthly,
Scribner's, and other similar magazines. What do these differing tastes sug-
gest to you?

2. Certain high-school pupils go twice a week to the "movies." They are,
the parents say, excessively fond of dancing, and of all the music, light, dress,
and fellowship that go with it. They read newspapers moderately, magazines
very slightly, and heavier books hardly at all. In your estimation, are these
youths :

a. Now seriously "short" or "low-brow" in culture ?

b. Probably destined to be seriously deficient in cultural interests at forty
years of age ?

c. Capable of being considerably elevated culturally by anything a typical
high school can do ?

3. Leaving out recent immigrants, "poor whites" in the South, and illiterate
negroes, what are to-day the "prevailing" cultural standards of most American
adults, over thirty years of age, as respects: literacy; general reading; picture
appreciation; appreciations and knowledge of world geography; same, world



history; same, American history; appreciations of nature; avocational in-
terests; cultural knowledge and appreciations of other human beings?

4. Europeans sometimes assert :

a. That American culture is crude, provincial, and "bourgeois." What are
they trying to say ?

b. That democracy is fatal to culture. Why and how?

c. That much of our culture is "machine made." What does this mean?

5. Can people, in your estimation, exhibit culture in : speech ; manners ;
travel; habitual reading; their friendships; their choice of houses?

6. What are the kinds and degrees of "ordinary culture" which you possess
in common with nearly all other American-born adults who have had at least
the benefits of five or six grades of elementary-school education? Separately
consider :

a. Your "performing" abilities in silent reading; letter writing; pleasing
and effective speech; manners of social intercourse; decencies and "decent
reticences" of social intercourse and behavior ; and abilities to "get about."

b. Your tastes, appreciations, and persisting interests in reading of (i)
newspapers, (2) magazines, and (3) books; in drama and photodrama; in
pictures and illustrations; in personal dress; in music of several kinds; in
nature; as a naturalist; in crafts, gardening, and other avocations lying outside
your regular work ; in sports in which you are not a usual active participant.

c. Your marked contrasts in culture to other specified case-group?

7. As respects what phases of culture do you now feel yourself fairly well
advanced and growing ? In what respects do you make no pretenses beyond
the lowest average ? If a year of free time and abundant money were given
you for self-cultivation, along what lines would you seek further to educate
yourself? What would be your first choice of means? Your second?

8. Analyze your own present cultural attainments in the following fields,
and their probable maximum development during next ten years, in the light
of your present ambitions, time, and abilities (include only those appreciations
in which you find substantial pleasure, and which you from time to time try
to gratify by returning to the same sources) : pre-nineteenth-century poetry;
Shakespearean drama as reading; nineteenth-century poetry of England; same,
American, except Whitman; Whitman's poetry; "modern" poetry; standard
classic fiction — Goldsmith, Fielding, Thackeray, and the like ; "high-grade mod-
ern" fiction — Henry James, Conrad, and the like ; popular modern fiction —
specify types; classical music; nature exploration; philosophical thought;
"social problems" thought.

What tests of your present culture attainments, and self-developments
toward higher standards, do you find in your persistently maintained contacts
with: English magazines; highest grade American quarterlies or monthlies;
same, weekly journals of opinion; illustrated popular magazines; library read-
ings and others.


q. What arc sonic of the si.uns hy which you w^nild recognize a family of
superior cuUure, assuming the group to consist of father, mother, and four
children from ages four to hftecn? W^ould you expect same interests or
attainments in the children as in the adults? Would you expect the children
to he progressively rising toward the standards of the adults?

10. What are some of the signs by which you would expect to recognize
in a small city — having a population perhaps of some twenty thousand — a
"high level" of culture, which it is alleged to possess? Would you expect to
find ignorant persons, possibly illiterates, in it? Cheap "movies" and maga-
zines? Poor taste in furniture?

Would you expect to find clubs or select circles, cultivating higher interests?
\Miat kinds, probably ? Would these center about special interests — some about
concert music ; some about dramatics ; others about modern poetry ?

11. Recall three typical household groups of your acquaintance, and with
reference to each, answer these questions :

a. What is the general reading of the family group or individual members?
Separately consider: newspapers, magazines, borrowed (including library)
books, owned books. To what extent did the supply of reading seem mark-
edly short of their genuine cultural interests in reading? For what members
were available supplies excessive ?

b. What cultural interests did the members show in: music (kinds); photo-
drama (preferences); nature and science; superior qualities in housing, fur-
niture, dress (from what other motives besides good taste?), refined asso-
ciations, intellectualized intercourse, speech, travel (motives?)?

c. What were the members consciously doing to promote their own self-
development along cultural lines?

d. What were they doing to promote the cultural development of others
through some form of cooperative endeavor?

e. Having in mind the native abilities and relatively unescapable environ-
ments of these families, what seem to you to be reasonable upper limits of
their cultural development in : appreciation of current political and scientific
thought; appreciation of good music; development of amateur cultural hob-
bies; reading of fiction; reading of poetry?


The activities of men can conveniently be divided into two main cate-
gories — the productive and the utilizing. Under the highly organized
conditions of modern life, fairly clear demarkations are made between
the activities of work or vocation, and all others. A man's vocation com-

* See Snedden, Vocational Education (Ch. 3, The Relation of General to Voca-
tional Education) ; also, Snedden, Problems of Educational Readjustments (Ch. 3,
What is Liberal Education?).


monly conditions his cultural life in large measure, but does not consti-
tute it.

Primitive man was largely the consumer of his own products. While
even far back there were probably small amounts of specialized service
in magic, transmission of lore, and possibly in certain forms of plastic
art, it must nevertheless have been largely true that, in the absence of
trade, large aggregations of population, and stable residence, every adult
must produce the "goods" needed by himself and his immediate de-
pendents. Under these conditions each person's culture was closely in-
terwoven with the activities by which he "produced" material commodi-
ties, worship, music, moral controls, health, and the like, for himself
and his family group.

Contrast with such a primitive a worker taken from any one of a thou-
sand channels of modern productive work. A coal-miner, for example,
works underground from thirty-five to forty-five hours per week, taking
down coal. His vocation involves almost no change of routine year in
and year out. Many of its processes have become largely automatic.
With his vocation are intimately bound up some very intense and narrow
essential conditions — the clothes he must wear, the risks he must take,
the tools and machines he must work with, the supervision he must
respond to, and the associates with whom he must cooperate.

But outside of his working hours, and for nearly all phases of his utili-
zation, he lives in a completely dififerent world. The clothes and foods
he consumes derive from all quarters of the globe. Newspaper, phono-
graph, and moving picture convey to him ideas, esthetic gratifications, and
other stimuli, coming from near and afar, and often being the output
of minds and talents of superior and highly specialized quality. His
wife and children express the efifects of vocational contacts radically
dififerent from his own. The short hours of his vocation leave him some
leisure for the cultivation of a hobby — gardening, a variety of craftsman-

Online LibraryDavid SneddenEducational sociology → online text (page 43 of 71)