G. Stanley (Granville Stanley) Hall.

Morale, the supreme standard of life and conduct online

. (page 16 of 25)
Online LibraryG. Stanley (Granville Stanley) HallMorale, the supreme standard of life and conduct → online text (page 16 of 25)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

squeezes customers, as follows:

1. Publicity, e. g. f in the Ida Tarbell exposure of
the Standard Oil trust, can drag to light disreput-
able secret methods and agreements and thus do
much to arouse public sentiment to condemnation of
a concealment that hides unfairness, just as to make
diplomacy open instead of secret makes for its re-
form. Just as the old church confessional held that
to confess is the first step toward forsaking sin, and
as the new psychanalytic cures rest on the principle
that to get conscious of psychic defects tends to their
removal, so the awakening of a community to a sense
of the evils that prey upon it is the first step towards
its regeneration. To be really therapeutic publicity
must be pitiless. Nothing must be concealed and no
one guilty must escape. The difficulties here are very
grave; the greater the abuses, the more elaborate are
the methods of protection and defense against ex-
posure. In an age and land where eloquence was
the focus of all educational endeavor Cicero taught
that the chief function of the orator was to see that
no great and good act, however private and modest,
went without its meed of praise. He should have
added that the orator ought to allow nothing harmful
to the community to remain unknown and uncen-



sured. This should now be the function of the press,
the pulpit, and the teacher in these fields. Among
story- and playwrights the arts and devices of the de-
tective of crime have of late given him an uncanny
and almost supernatural sagacity. Detectives of in-
dustrial and commercial malpractice are now even
more needed and will require yet greater powers of
insight, endurance, and courage. We have had many
government investigations and reports that exposed
underhand methods in different lines of business, and
advanced students in the department of economics
in many of our universities have shed light on many
practices in local lines of business. But we need and
shall sometime have bureaus of trained experts who
will, upon call, investigate the practices of corpora-
tions with regard to fairness of profit-making, as we
already do of efficiency, and there will be concerns
that will court and be advantaged by such publicity,
for it would indeed be an advertisement for any good
firm. It is a low state of morale in a community that
will long submit to extortion, as Americans are too
prone to do, without even a citizens' committee to at-
tempt their amelioration. The effectiveness of the
publicity-cure depends, first, on the tone and virility
of public opinion, and secondly, upon the sensitive-
ness of offenders to its censure. There are those who
fear only legal penalties and are unperturbed by so-
cial opprobium or even ostracism, and there is dan-
ger that the number of these defiant graspers is grow-
ing and that they are becoming bolder. For these



public condemnation has no terrors unless it costs
them customers and patronage, and that it does so
every; community should have the morale to make
sure. There are, on the other hand, concerns that
have voluntarily submitted themselves to such ex-
aminations, although thus far this has been done in
too sporadic and unorganized a way. Some, again,
who at first used religion and ostentatious charity as
a defense mechanism against the condemnation of the
community and their own conscience, or as a cloak for
their covert crimes against industrial society, have
later grown more amenable to public criticism and
not only complied with its dictates outwardly but
have done so with inner conviction. Thus publicity
has even brought true regeneration. Karely as this
has occurred, morale has sometimes triumphed over
profiteering under the tonic stimulus of publicity.

2. Ridicule in the form of satire and caricature
and irony can do something, as has often been shown
in the field of political profiteering, e. g., in the classic
case of Nast and the corrupt Tweed ring in New
York City years ago. France is most responsive to
this method, for there a clever Tzon mot or cartoon
has sometimes been an important factor in even the
fall of a minister and cabinets. Here we find some
rapprochement between morals and aesthetics, for
satire to be effective must be fresh as well as ap-
posite. To represent the genus profiteer as an octo-
pus, vampire, hog, a masked holdup man, an enor-
mously bloated human monster; to bestialize por-



traits of money magnates or to represent them behind
bars or in striped prison attire; to caricature the ex-
tra.vagances and excesses of the worthless offspring
or the general preposterousness of the newly rich
all these were once effective but have lost most of
their force because they have become trite, and also
because the victim himself has learned to laugh with
the public. The real culprits, too, are usually direc-
tors whose meetings are behind closed doors and their
proceedings secret, and while the great body of stock-
holders who simply cut coupons and pocket dividends
are protected by anonymity, even executive heads act
under the mandate of the "higher-ups," who are hard
to find. The laugh of derision must be at somebody,
and if no object can be found ridicule loses its point.
Juvenal's castigations did little to check the degene-
ration of his day; Pope's "Dunciad" did alleviate the
pest of poetasters, and "Don Quixote" gave the final
coup de grace to medieval chivalry; but for us there
seems little prospect of help from these sources. The
auri sacra fames is too strong and its excesses too
tragic for wit or humor, and its armor blunts the
shafts of satire. It invites invectives rather than any
form of derision, and even this is likely now to be
discredited as implying radical socialism or even
Bolshevism. A modern Juvenal would be thought an
advocate of the soviet, if not an anarchist.

3. Portrayals and illustrations of the simple life.
Of these we have had many. Our institutions were
planned when life was largely rural; intercourse,



trade, commerce, and manufacture, elemental; and
plain living and high thinking an ideal that seemed
well on the way to realization. From Plato's Re-
public down men have dreamed of model states, com-
munities, and Utopias of many kinds, and there have
also been many spasmodic attempts to set up and
operate societies where the common good was the su-
preme goal of each. Some of the best novels of our
generation, too, have portrayed idyllic pictures of so-
cial conditions where individual good and the motive
of personal gain were subordinated to the general
weal. Scholars have lived among the ignorant, rich
men and women among the poor, to know and to help
them. Academic sociologists and economists have
often inculcated into their classes more or less ran-
cor against great wealth and its methods, and stressed
the abuses of capitalism until one would think some
of them were almost ready to take the vow of pov-
erty, in which eastern ascetics and medieval saints
found veritable inspiration for service. Clergymen
have felt and voiced the charm of the simple life.
But wealth is phlegmatic and its conscience greasy
and slippery, so that no painful friction is felt and
there is no attrition of the lust for pelf. We all have
schizophrenic or split souls. We have a warm side
for these idealities, at least in a kind of Sunday
mood, but on Monday, Mammon has us in his clutches
and we lose the vision in the practicalities of week-
days. Of these two souls, which it is the peculiarity
of modern man to have developed, one is weak and


its primacy is only occasional, while the other is
strong and habitual and there is too often an im-
pervious partition between them. Neither need en-
croach upon the domain of the other. The grasper
even feels complacency that he can tolerate and per-
haps even enjoy the portrayal of a line of bad prac-
tices of which he is himself not incapable and which
are not utterly alien to the main determinants of his
life. It is only when his ideals threaten actual and
immediate harm to his own material interest that h.e
condemns them. Thus we must conclude that all
such principles and examples of high civic morale,
while they are too valuable to be abandoned, can
really do but little in such an unprecedented crisis
as this through which we are now passing. Those
who think we may arrive easily and imperceptibly at
our economic and philanthropic millennia do not see
that we may warm to them just because and in so
far as we feel that they cannot be actualized, and our
sympathy with them we feel to be a compensation
for not realizing them. Sympathy here acts like an
attenuated virus or a Platonic catharsis in insuring
immunity. Thus we hear sermons, see plays, read
romances, or sometimes communistic treatises, and
even praise those who, if they controlled our conduct,
would utterly subvert our present way of life. Such
individuals are, of course, developing a secondary
personality which may possibly some time become the
dominant one. But this would occur only under
great stress and such conversions are rare. They are



not, however, impossible, and we shall see later how
this may sometimes occur and regenerate individuals
and communities.

4. Morale and Revolution. This to many seems
the only way outside of existing laws and courts.
Some day the masses will arise in their might and
sweep away capital, privilege, the upper classes, and
the present economic, social, industrial, legal, and
religious system, and usher in a new dispensation.
To the chief modern paradigm of the French Revolu-
tion is now added the far more effective and contem-
porary achievements of Bolshevism and the forcible
expropriation of wealth. This proletarian hope has
never been so strong in the world before. Very many
of those not in this movement have hitherto been
profiteers in most that men strive for. We can hardly
overestimate the force of this appeal in the world to-
day or the enthusiasm and often the fanaticism of its
devotees. Very few of the wealthy and the cultured
know the force of this appeal. We shall never be en-
tirely overwhelmed by this flood because we are a na-
tion in which the middle class predominates, as dis-
tinct from Russia where the middle class was so
small and impotent, but it is a movement of such
psychological intensity that it will break us if we
cannot bend and make rather radical readjustments.
We have simply to make a better organized world.
W T hat are the dictates of high morale in this

First of all we must learn, and that sympathetical-



ly, how life looks to the poor and the ignorant ; how
the anarchist really thinks and feels and just what
he wants and why; how the immigrants from many;
lands who have found their way to our shores differ
in their temperament and views of life and its work;
what these classes love and hope for, and what dis-
tempers infect their souls and what parasites prey
on them; and w r e must multiply every agency of in-
formation, both of ourselves and of enlightenment on
his part. In this intensified campaign of education
of him and ourselves we must seek to give the men
and women of the masses better leadership and set
them better examples. From this point of view I be-
lieve that the censorship of our government has been
mistaken. Both my academic friends and I have
tried in every way to obtain and collect confiscated
seditious literature, and the responses to our appeals
have been often met as if we were propagandists in-
stead of investigators trying to discover and help to
heal a social disease. Those generally cheaply
printed tracts, leaflets, journals, and pamphlets
which we have been able to obtain are often seductive
but are easy to answer, even to the lower level of in-
telligences to which they are addressed. But they
get in their work, for the most part, unchecked, al-
though many of them are utterly and radically un-
and anti-American. The Americanization methods
of our schools rarely reach those who read these
sheets, and the secret propaganda of Bolshevik ideas
is but little checked just where it is doing most



mischief. A true morale requires that all these se-
ditious and revolutionary utterances be carefully
collected and studied, as we study infectious germs
or an epidemic in order to develop effective therapies
and prophylaxes for them. If such a task were
definitely assigned to our academic teachers of soci-
ology and economics, it would be indeed a new and
important step in safeguarding our very civilization,
and perhaps what is more important, it would in-
cidentally do much to restrain and correct certain
radical tendencies in the same direction which now
infect so many professors in these fields by showing
them whither they are tendling. If any of them
should be thus converted, one back-fire to these aims
would be set. This would have great significance
for morale, and the very strength of dangerous opin-
ions which require yet deeper studies to complete
them would itself tend to secure us in the way of

The Mormons have or had a method of sending out
their more thoughtful, educated young men, especially
if they were growing skeptical of the tenets of their
church, as missionaries, and it was found that by thus
holding a brief for their doctrines and defending and
making active propaganda for them, they almost al-
ways succeeded in the end in at least answering their
own doubts and converting themselves. If some of
our younger sociologists who have radical leanings
were set the task of making propaganda for such con-
servative views as they have left against the rising tide



of Bolshevism, by studying and answering its litera-
ture, the same change for the better might be se-
cured. 1 There is only too much reason to fear that
many of our academic teachers have grown at heart
more radical than their friends or even they them-
selves suspect, but at least we must not forget that
they have, on the other hand, done an incalculable
service against profiteering, especially in the way of
exposing corrupt practices. While our laws prescribe
more or less effectively for the safety of public and
private health by stamping out the germs of infectious
diseases wherever they appear, our chief hope is in
those laboratories which actively cultivate these mor-
bific germs to find their antidote, and we need to
do more to establish such therapeutic agencies for
the yet more deadly germs of anarchism now so active
in our midst.

While the press in this country is more or less ef-
fective and. to some degree free from external control,
it is nevertheless rapidly becoming more and more
servile to its advertisers. A large part of the revenues
of most of our journals comes from this source, so
that they have long competed with each other in low-
ering the price of their sheets in order to extend their
circulation, according to which the price of their ad-
vertising is rated. It is no secret that very many
concerns find it expedient to lavish vast sums upon
advertising which may or may not bring any great

' Paul Frederick Brissenden : The I. W. W., A Study of American
Syndicalism. N. Y., Columbia U., 1919.



increase of customers but which is so effective in pre-
venting editorial attack. The threat of withdraw-
ing this patronage by any large class of advertisers
is often only too effective, and it is sometimes even
necessary to know the chief sources of this income
before we know whether a paper will print or decline
even an outside communication that effectively at-
tacks them. If we could only have here and there a
well endowed journal which would take no advertise-
ments at all and was conducted solely in the interest
of public morale, with its columns open to all who
intelligently sought to advance it, much could be ac-
complished here.

As it is, the instincts that make for profiteering
are almost inseparable from a commercial age, and
if we analyze ourselves conscientiously and. careful-
ly, the best of us will probably find that we have not
always lived up to the maxim of never accepting a
dollar which does not represent a dollar's worth of
real service.



woman suffrage has done so little Why its leaders are BO
averse to the recognition of sex differences in this age when in-
dividual differences are so studied Incompleteness of women
without children The results of her inferiority of physical
strength List of sex differences Ultimate goal of the woman
movement Secondary sex differences in psychanalysis Problems
to which woman should address herself Marriage and divorce.

The English militant suffragettes had the saving
common sense deliberately to suspend their campaign
of sabotage when the war came and to spare the
world the patheticism of their starvation and forced
feeding in jails, and they have now won in Europe and
this country their long fight for complete citizenship.
Not only the polls but nearly every vocation and all
the learned professions, educational opportunities
everywhere, and even legislative bodies and many offi-
cial positions are open to them. Woman now is
doubtless on the way toward becoming a political
power that everyone seeking an elective office from
the presidency to a position on the school boards
must reckon with. It would seem as if after all the
reforms promised if women attained the right to vote,
we should even have a woman's party with its own
distinctive platform and program, but there is no
one yet who seriously proposes this. Women have
been a power in many great and good causes prohi-



bition, child labor, education, sanitation, etc. but
they have done little to elevate the tone of local poli-
tics ; while in the larger questions of national or even
state politics their influence has been very little felt.
Even the social evil they have done little to mitigate.
Thus much as woman has accomplished and much as
has been done for her, we find in many quarters a feel-
ing that she is yet far from her goal, and there is even
a query abroad as to whether she really knows what
she truly wants. It is surely no longer, in the main,
equality of opportunity with man, which has so long
been her slogan.

She cannot bring herself to relinquish any of the
old privileges of her sex while claiming so many new
ones. Most of all, nearly all the leaders of her sex
resent the one clear call of the present hour to go
back to first principles and ask again what are the
real intrinsic differences between man and woman.
.While recognizing in practical life, as she needs must,
all the fundamental differences, she evades in near-
ly every possible way all attempts to bring these
obvious differences into the foreground because still
obsessed by the old fear that difference means in-
feriority, rather than implying, as all the best of them
do, a distinct superiority. In many women's meetings
I have attended the topic of diversities, if not taboo,
is at least distasteful. Even at the International
Conference of Women Physicians (New York, Sep-
tember to October, 1919) I was, I think, authorita-
tively told that the foreign delegates welcomed as the



American women disapproved this theme. When in
1873 Dr. Edward Clark called attention to the need
of monthly easement from strain, a storm of protest
arose, and in the flood of answers he was said to have
"insulted every woman in the land," and the need
which he so clearly showed is even yet very unsatis-
factorily recognized.

Women leaders especially in this country have al-
ways minimized innate sex differences. Once they
ignored or denied them, and now we are told that
even most of the more obvious of them, such as muscu-
lar inferiority, have been acquired by woman's long
subjection to man and will be obliterated in time by
the new regime of parity. A very accomplished
woman medical expert now tells us that type (in
this case Jung's distinction between introverts and
extroverts) is a distinction superior to that of sex and
supersedes it, when in fact it is related to it only in
the way in which color, adiposity, temperament, and
every other characteristic point of difference be-
tween individuals is. In fact, this horror differenti-
arum belongs to a stage of the feministic movement
which has done its work and should be laid aside,
and in its place we should have a new and almost op-
posite ideal. To attain the new morale which the
times now demand of her sex woman is called on to
find and emphasize every possible real and certain
sex difference and to push it to the uttermost. She
should now stand squarely upon the facts of her sex
and strive to become as truly feminine as man should



be virile. In place of the old goal, then, of equality
and identity we should place a new ideal of differ-
entiation. As Hyatt long ago showed, savage men
and women are more alike in form, feature, industrial
efficiency, including muscle, than under civilization,
which always and everywhere involves progressive

Another movement characteristic of our times em-
phasizes this demand. To-day we test and measure
every kind of physical and mental capacity. The new
individual psychology seeks with all its resources to
find the proprium of each person and to put each at
the job for which he is best fitted, no matter whether
by inherited or acquired traits. We are finding under
this method enormous economy, and that, too, in the
most precious of all the factors of production, viz,,
the human element. .We seek out the peculiarities of
age, race, constitutional diathesis, temperament,
type, etc., and strive to redefine and utilize them all
in terms of happiness and efficiency. We even assume
that there is something, if we can only find it, in
which almost everyone can at least relatively excel,
and are realizing that even great ability in the wrong
place is doomed to failure. Vocational guidance and
even health, sanity, and morality are involved in this
work. Sex, one of the chief differences in the hu-
man race, should no longer claim exemption from
this survey and refuse to profit by the incalculable
advantages which its practical application would



This is not the place, nor am I competent to enumer-
ate, least of all in their true perspective, all the dif-
ferentiae, but an attempt to tab off ever so roughly
a few of the most obvious of them may suggest some-
thing of the new morale that its proper recognition
will give to the new cause of woman in the world.

No normal woman is complete without bearing and
rearing children. Her body and soul were meant for
motherhood. Everything the world adores in her
centers about this function. By far the largest part
of the office of repopulating the world, in successive
generations rests mainly upon her. She is, on the
whole, the best woman who produces and rears to ma-
turity the most and the best children, and the same
is of course true of the fathers, although in a far more
indirect way. Everything whatever that interferes
with this her supreme function is a loss to the human
race. The problem of national, racial, and individual
supremacy bottoms on that of fecundity plus the con-
servation of offspring. Those nations that excel here
will rule the world in the future. Lecky thought the
Dark Ages were due to the celibacy of those who were
potentially the : best parents, and if the best women
now refuse for any cause this function, they are con-
tributing in the same way to retard the progress of
the country and the world. Who save the modern
woman of the old regime, who fought the long and
bitter war of sex against sex, ignores this, and who of
the most insightful of us all yet recognizes all the
practical implications of this most obvious of first



principles in this field. Even the exemption of
women from labor during later pregnancy and early
lactation has gone but a little way.

Although men and women have each all the essen-
tial traits of the other, the "fashion-plate," "Gibson
girl" is no less a monstrosity than the feminized
male, and everything that tends to reapproximation
is not in the interests of true progress as seen in the
larger light of biology. Hence the ideal of those
feminists who claim everything that man has, would

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 16 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

Online LibraryG. Stanley (Granville Stanley) HallMorale, the supreme standard of life and conduct → online text (page 16 of 25)