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can human nature continue to put forth new sprouts
and civilization be secured against stagnation and
mechanization.

The contribution of all this work to morale both in
the army and in the arts of peace has never been ade-
quately realized even by those w r ho inaugurated it. I
believe its value can hardly be overestimated. First,
we all want self-knowledge, and an essential part of
this is to know how we rank as compared with others.
Boys in a school have to know who can whip whom,
and girls to appraise their good looks, etc. Emula-
tion and the dread of inferiority are among the fun-
damental motives in the human herd. In a democ-
racy men need to be taught that they are not equal
save in opportunity, with the prestige of birth and
inheritance swept away. Native inequalities not only
ought not to be lost sight of but all the more recog-
nized and given freest scope. The abolition of facti-
tious prestige has no purpose if it does not mean the
inauguration of nature's aristocracy of the ablest and
the best. If the high are brought low and the humble
exalted, it must be by intrinsic merit or desert, by the
power of some to lead or by the lack of this power in

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MORALE

others. Only on this basis can any organization or
institution, social or political, be permanently based.
True self-knowledge and reevaluation of self cure
even neurotics. In a true democracy, thus, each must
know his own worth aright for this means a new and
true hierarchy of gifts and attainments, and so it
must have its leaders and its led, its captains and its
privates, and even its underlings. It must have its
ranks, grades, and classes but they must be those Na-
ture decrees. If ideals of proletarian rule ignore this
and level the weak and the strong, they fly in the face
of the basal facts of human nature no less than does
the opposite extreme of dominance by right of wealth
and. ; birth. Such ratings as the above thus contribute
their moiety not only to discriminate between indi-
viduals who are a liability and those who are an as-
set to the community, but give to each who submits to
such tests and in any degree accepts their findings,
some sense of his true place in the world. If they
tear down the delusions of the unfit about themselves
they give a splendid stimulus to those of low degree
whom they exalt, and a complete democracy means
and needs just this and little else if we consider all
its implications. Each man and woman in the place
he is qualified by Nature and culture to fill is its
ideal.

Much as we crave self-knowledge, it is, however,
always attained with more or less resistance, so that
there is no danger that the methods and the value of
all such findings and ratings will not be sufficiently

170



criticized, especially when promotions based on them
compete with older bases such as seniority in service,
the false humanism that refuses to recognize in-
feriority because it is pathetic, or that would lower
standards of efficiency to keep the slower pace of the
weak ; or especially the misconception of a democracy
that would ignore Nature's distinctions and so inter-
pret equality as to impair its freedom to profit to the
uttermost by every kind of superiority each may pos-
sess. It is in the light of such considerations that we
must rate very highly the value of all such tests, not
only in war but in all departments of life in times of
peace.

Finally, if we ask what is the value of such work
for psychology and its morale, our verdict must be
less favorable. This splendid young science has
rather suddenly gone out into practical life, conquer-
ing and to conquer. It has not only taught scores of
occupations how to pick and assign their employees
to special tasks, has taught advertisers 'how to make
their displays more catchy and alluring, has told
printers how to space better and suggested improved
forms of type to increase the amount of clear legi-
bility per unit of space, has inaugurated better color
harmonies for textiles and decorations, but it has also
ma$e school work more economical and effective, has
given shrewd suggestions to drummers in the art of
selling, told how to make shop window displays more
attractive, developed an ingenious technic of hand-
ling and graphic presentation of masses of data gath-

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MOEALE

ered in many fields, has analyzed many industrial
processes and improved upon those which are tradi-
tional to the great enhancement of efficiency in many
lines of work, has improved accounting, has taught
us better ways of dealing with criminals and the sub-
normal, surveyed industrial and educational institu-
tions and systems, and has accomplished signal re-
sults in many other domains.

But the question is still insistent how many of the
scores of psychologists who have turned aside to this
work have really made or found in all these fields sub-
stantial contributions to pure psychology, behavior-
istic, genetic, or introspective. Is there danger here
that our science will lapse from culture to Kultur?
Psychology is the acme of all the studies that deal
with men. It has accomplished very much in the
study of the senses, memory, association, attention,
the intellectual processes, and even the volitional life
of man, but it now confronts the yet vaster and
harder problems of feeling, emotion, sentiment, or af-
fectivity generally, and here a new balance must be
struck between synthesis and analysis ; and to this end
it needs data broader than those which the control of
conditions of the laboratory can supply as a point of
new departures. Instead of carrying on the well-begun
investigations into child life, instinct in animals, the
insane, primitive races, the analysis of philosophies,
the problems of esthetics and logic, and increasing our
capital of knowledge, we have devoted ourselves to
the application of what was already ascertained.

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SPECIFIC MORALE FOR THE ARMY

Outline of the Munson memorandum Characterization of the meth-
ods of developing morale in Camp Greenleaf Lessons of this
work.

March 2, 1918, Brigadier-General E. L. Munson
submitted in a confidential manuscript to the Sur-
geon-General a memorandum setting forth the need
of a systematic plan for the psychological stimulation
of troops in promoting fighting efficiency. The insight
shown by and the practical significance of this note
merits the amplest recognition not only by the army,
which it received, but also- by psychologists, who have
not fully appreciated its value, and so I epitomize
and quote from it as follows.

There has hitherto been little effort by the War
Department to make effective use of the mental fac-
tor in war, to which very few officers have given seri-
ous consideration while most have entirely ignored
it. The effectiveness of a fighting force depends on
the willingness of its units to contend and if neces-
sary to die for an idea, and in our 'Service the incul-
cation of such ideals has been left to chance and is
at the very best crude, so that many do not know what
they are fighting for, many are illiterate or of a low
order of intelligence, or foreign-born and unfamiliar

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MOEALE

with this country or even its language, and so their
will to support vicissitudes and to conquer is im-
paired. We have been materialistic in our military
service, thinking only of the men, money, and muni-
tions necessary, but this does not make the true
fighter.

Morale is the driving force behind the spear-point
and gives efficacy to equipment, training,and expendi-
ture. It is the steam in the boiler, an imponderable
dominating power which, if it is below the highest
standard, lessens the chance of victory. Russia col-
lapsed because she lacked morale. Its presence gave
victory to a handful of Greeks against the Persian
hordes at Marathon. It gives temper to the edge of
resolve. In our own previous wars we had to depend
on volunteers whose very enlistment was an initial
impulse tending toward victory, so that all we had to
do was to transform every individual impulse into
the unity which distinguishes an army from a mob.
Now, however, most of our soldiers are drafted, and
their incentive to fight has to be molded and brought
into focal community of purpose, so that the psycho-
logical problem facing the War Department is vastly
greater than ever before in our history, and whatever
there is in such an army of the w r ill-to-win is largely
a by-product engendered incidentally and springing
too much from the personality of the local leader. At
least it is not created intentionally or deliberately
by the War Department, and in this oversight it has
neglected its greatest asset. Cowardice is a state of

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SPECIFIC MORALE FOR THE ARMY

mind and springs from the depression due to contact
with the unknown and its vague terrors magnified by
ignorance; -hence the need of explanation in advance
of contact. Fear and panic are thus largely the re-
sults of imaginary not of real evils which moral train-
ing can, to a great extent, anticipate and remove. We
generally assume that the will-to-win exists pre-
formed among troops, but this is false save for a few.
It can, however, thrive under culture. Bayonet ex-
ercise gives it for individuals by arousing the instinct
of self-preservation. Drill gives it to organizations;
so does experience in service and resentment at the
cruelty of the enemy. But we must not limit our
training to the body and omit that of the mind.

Few are born fighters but many may be aroused by
external stimuli to acts of heroic bravery. Hence we
should create an official organization with ramifica-
tions through the army detailed enough to reach each
individual at frequent intervals and affect his men-
tal attitude. Its activity should be all-pervasive and
should take advantage of any change in conditions,
environmental, military, or political, and its sole
function should be to intensify the will-to-win. Some
member of the General Staff should be detailed for
every large body of troops, charged solely with the
specific duty of raising and maintaining morale at a
high level. This agent should be on the watch for un-
favorable rumors and refute them; he should note
evidences of disappointment and trace and remove
their cause; look to amusement, occupation, and the

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MORALE

general condition of every group, and if possible of
every individual. Each regiment should have its se-
lected local agent working under a division officer,
each company commander should be ex offtcio the
morale officer for his company, and chaplains, too,
should be used to this end. To be effective this psy-
chological stimulation must be continuous, varied,
quick to act against depression, whether due to
enemy propaganda, bad weather, military reverses,
sickness, deficient supplies, political or economic
condition, or anything else. The personnel charged
with this work should constantly study morale and
detect everything wrong at the start and if possible
neutralize it. Its influence should extend not merely
to the United States forces but to the civilian body.
They should be negative, i. e., to impair the enemy's
morale or fighting spirit ^ and positive, to encourage
our men. These means, too, may be either direct and
open or indirect, e. g., through the civil population
and by making environment more favorable. The
duty of depressing the enemy's civilian psyche is the
work of the Bureau of Public Information, which has
done many things in many ways. All hostile and de-
pressing sentiment must be controlled and neutral-
ized, and among these we must count indifference,
selfishness, greed, and ignorance. Besides breaking
the enemy's morale by making the war itself hard for
him, psychologic methods should be used, e. g. } printed
matter scattered by aviators, use of the neutral press,
special instruction of exchange prisoners, etc. In all

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SPECIFIC MOKALE FOR THE ARMY

methods of direct stimulation publicity is necessary.
The American thinks and does not take kindly to un-
due concealment of conditions. He is unusually
amenable to control by direct appeal to his reason
and justice, and he should be given every opportunity
to think and follow appeals along logical lines. He
resents being led blindfolded. Thus in applying the
necessary rules of censorship care must be taken that
the human interest, which is the mainspring of ser-
vice, be not unduly oppressed. Everything should be
made public which is not detrimental to military pur-
poses. Information of what others in the service are
doing and appreciation of accomplishments give a
sense of a common cause and braces fortitude.

The plan of "Four-Minute. Men" molding opinion
by brief addresses on every public occasion at home
should extend to the army, speakers to which should,
if possible, be enlisted for greater unity of status and
thought. The ground such speakers cover should be
carefully mapped out in outline by experts. There
should also be lectures for officers, with syllabi, not
limiting, however, the freedom of the lecturer, and
the outlines should be posted and copies given to
every officer to use as he best can with his men. Each
officer should be encouraged to give simple talks on
prescribed topics to the men under his command. Lo-
cal publications, like camp papers, should be encour-
aged, if not ordered, and there should be a central
agency connected with every part of the service which
should furnish papers gratis and news items, and

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MORALE

stories of live, patriotic value. The psychologists of
the Sanitary Corps should also prepare brief ad-
dresses to officers on the best way to control the men-
tal attitudes of their men, on discipline, etc. The
psychological attitude of the German soldier should
be analyzed and interpreted ; also of the German peo-
ple. Song writers should be set to work writing pa-
triotic and well-chosen verses with catchy music, and
the best should be widely distributed by the govern-
ment and be eventually printed in an official song-
book.

The work of the Committee on Training Camp Ac-
tivities is of the greatest psychological value amuse-
ments, games, recreations, etc. There should be
high-class plays of a patriotic nature for the stage
and moving pictures written under government direc-
tion and encouragement, and these should be given
wide currency among troops, both amateurs and pro-
fessionals. The Y. M. C. A. should give more movies
of this nature and less of the "trashy" kind. There
should be select movies used not merely for instruc-
tion purposes but as psychic stimuli to familiarize
new soldiers with the scenes of war. So far the
General Staff has used movies merely to teach the
perfection of physical movement, pictures, too, illus-
trating the ruthlessness and devastation of the enemy,
such as the series created by the French government
entitled "In the Wake of the Huns."

Religion is one of the most powerful supports of
morale, giving mental strength in adversity and confi-

178



dence in the outcome of undertakings, as history abun-
dantly shows, and this agency should be developed.
The German belief in the indivisibility of God and
the Kaiser is one of the chief sources of mental stead-
fastness. Chaplains should be systematically util-
ized in psychic stimulation, and their services should
be not merely religious but they should treat of the
ethics of nations and individuals. A committee of
chaplains should suggest suitable Bible texts for ser-
mons and outline their applications to existing mili-
tary and political conditions, to the honor, truth,
faith, and mercy for which this country stands versus
dishonor, deceit, and cruelty. They should prepare
addresses for other than religious days, e. g., Memori-
al and all holidays. The best outlines should be pub-
lished and sent to all chaplains for their use, and the
school for their training at Fort Monroe furnishes
a convenient agency for this work.

The War Department should take up morale vig-
orously and without ostentation. The best results
are those secured by means not toe obvious. There
should be much confidential literature and yet the
general press should be furnished with everything
that soldiers or civilians ought to know. Such train-
ing in morale would not be the same here as with our
troops abroad, but it ought to make men better and
more indomitable as soldiers, as well as making them
eventually better citizens and Americans.

By way of realization of the above ideas of Briga-
dier-General Munson, Camp Greenleaf at Fort Ogle-

179



MOKALE

thorpe, Georgia, had already been established. On
May 31, the department of military psychology here
submitted by request a detailed program to the com-
mandant, which was adopted, and a camp morale of-
ficer was appointed to develop a wholesome mental
attitude toward the service and to make induction to
it as pleasant and profitable as possible. To this end
the personnel branch was utilized, as well as the fa-
cilities of the Y. M. C. A., K. of C., Jewish Welfare
Board, and the various committees on Training Camp
Activities.

A large tent was erected near the point where sol-
diers arrived and departed. An assistant morale of-
ficer, with a detachment of thirty-five enlisted men
from the school of Military Psychology, was detailed
to initiate this work, with the idea of standardizing
the method in one battalion so that it could be ap-
plied to other sections of the camp and adopted as a
program throughout the country. After a trial period
of several weeks the following scheme was adopted:
(I) The intensive phase of it was to stimulate the
morale of the recruit from detrainment until he left
this camp two weeks later; (II) the extensive phase
pertained to this later development elsewhere.

I. Under this plan all troop trains were met by mo-
rale officers, who encouraged the recruits to sing and
cheer on the march to camp. On arrival there they
were instructed by the morale sergeant in their pri-
mary adjustments, taught how to make their beds, and
informed as to the location of mess halls, latrines,

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SPECIFIC MORALE FOB THE ARMY

and wash-houses. They were given an unusually good
first meal whatever time of day they arrived. A bath
was part of the immediate program. All instruction
was given in the spirit of friendly counsel rather
than by the method of trial and error. On the morn-
ing of their first day in camp all were rostered by
companies and led to the information tent, which was
also the headquarters of the morale work, where they
were given a tag bearing the inscription: "You are
now a soldier of the United States, a soldier selected
by your country to fight for the freedom of the world.
Walk like a soldier. Think like a soldier. Act like
a soldier. Be a soldier. This is not easy to do at
first, and there may be things that you do not under-
stand. Never mind. All good soldiers have learned
to do the same things that you are learning to do.
Remember you follow a flag that has never led in ail
unjust war. Remember that the American army has
never yet been defeated. Do your part and it never
can be. Keep your head up, your eyes open, and
smile." On the reverse side of this tag was stamped
the recruit's company and camp address, with a blank
space for his autograph, so that it served the double
purpose of identification and inspiration.

The morale sergeant then directed the recruits to
the amphitheater where they received a copy of the
pamphlet on social hygiene, "Keeping Fit to Fight,"
and were given an informal talk covering the nature
of a detention camp, boundaries, relation to a per-
manent organization, reasons for detention, assur-

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MOKALE

ance against contagious diseases, vaccination, inocu-
lation, venereal diseases, the athletic program,
library, "the sick sergeant," letter-writing, clothing,
food, and, discipline, and the general qualities of the
soldier. They were then taught a lively army song,
and were welcomed by the chaplain, who in a short
address inculcated the duties of absolute obedience,
instructed them concerning the friendly attitude of
officers, told of the aims of the war, of the character
of the enemy, dangers of homesickness, etc.

Then each was conducted to a suitable place in
which to write a letter home, in which had to be in-
cluded the following letter signed by the battalion
commander and addressed to the friends at home.
The letter was as follows :

^ has arrived safely at this camp. He

will remain here for some time getting used to
army life and learning the first simple things that
our soldiers must know. The army supplies him
with clothing, good food, comfortable quarters, and
medical attendance. But in another way your help
is desired. Give him the support of your confidence
and cheer. Write to him often. Getting mail is a big
event in the soldier's day, and getting none is a real
disappointment. If pleasant things happen at home,
write him about them. If you are proud of him, tell
him so. Let Mm know that you are "back of him.
Don't be worried if your first letters to him are de-
layed; this is bound to happen sometimes. Keep
writing just the same and we will see that he gets all

182



SPECIFIC MORALE FOR THE ARMY

you write, even if it takes a little time. Remember
always that you, too, are part of the American army
you are the army of encouragement and enthusi-
asm. Write letters filled with these things to your
soldier and you will help us to help him. His ad-
dress is ."

This letter served a double purpose, that of inform-
ing the people at home of the safe arrival of the sol-
dier and of enlisting civilian support. Very many
replies to these letters were received by the battalion
commander which show their great value as a stim-
ulus of civilian morale as well as that of the soldier.

The "sick sergeant" in each company was a source
of general information, disseminating notices and
programs, leading in mass athletics and singing, and
in addition taking charge of the mail and in general
doing all he could to build up morale. He especially
cared for sick-calls, rest-periods, and evenings. He
organized inter-company games, etc.

As to entertainments, there were many vaude-
ville, boxing, wrestling, band and other concerts,
mass singing, motion pictures, dramatics, inspira-
tional addresses, war talks, and talent was generally
selected from the soldiers themselves, the morale ser-
geant always being on the lookout for any kind of en-
tertaining ability, giving the recruits try-outs, and
putting those who excelled on larger circuits. These
morale sergeants met daily to discuss problems, re-
port activities, suggest improvements, etc. On de-
parture from the detention camp the soldiers received

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MOEALE

a brief farewell talk. Here, although best of all at
Camp Gordon, special efforts were made to instruct
foreigners in English.

In France each division had its morale organiza-
tion and the seventh, especially, had what was called
a "welfare officer." Stress was laid upon evening en-
tertainments. Every evening there was one lasting
two and a half hours under the direction of the mo-
rale organization, while many more local ones were
given in the huts of the different organizations.

Religion was recognized as an adjuvant of morale,
but this was generally left to special agents of the
different religious bodies, and the policy of the of-
ficers was that of "Hands Off." All in all, the meth-
ods inaugurated at Greenleaf, according to one esti-
mate, raised the initial morale of soldiers some 30 per
cent, above the average, but such things are of course
hard to estimate.

II. In what was called extensive morale represen-
tatives of all agencies! singing, library work, the Ked
Cross, entertainment, athletics, etc., got together and
compared notes and harmonized their methods and
ideals. Special attention was given to the social evil
by tracts on venereal disease, prostitution, and also
on alcohol, as this work is represented as perhaps
even more vital than any other for morale. Those
capable of entertaining were relieved from afternoon
duty and were put on a special schedule, and im-
provements in their specialty were suggested and
urged. It was found necessary to provide not only,

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SPECIFIC MORALE FOR THE ARMY

segregated activities of all these sorts but special of-
ficers for colored troops. Certain films were tried out
and found so much more effective than others that at-
tempts were made to standardize them. Information
was posted on bulletin boards, and great use was


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Online LibraryG. Stanley (Granville Stanley) HallMorale, the supreme standard of life and conduct → online text (page 12 of 25)