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from this thought, which is repeated throughout his work: "The great value of sociology to most people will be an indirect consequence of its furnishing a point of view, a perspective, an atmosphere, which will help to place all the problems of life with which each has to deal; or, to use a different figure, it will serve as a pass-key to all the theoretical difficulties about society that each of us may encounter.” What is the nature of this pass key? “Indeed, we have come to realize that politics at bottom is very largely a maneuvering to control the means of controlling wealth.” Here Small uses historical materialism as a pass-key.
But because Small does not accept in full the position of the Socialist, his work has no positive program. And such a program it must have, to be worth anything. For, in his own words, “If our sociology turns out to be real knowledge, not the temporary aberration of a few pedants, it must have a message that can be translated from technical academic phraseology into the thought and words of common life.” Small could not strike off better the charge of the Socialist; he could not better acknowledge the challenge of the workers that the fulfilling of this purpose is the express mission of the Socialist movement.
It is just the theory of historical materialism that is the vitalizing force of sociology. If "history is sociology in the yoke," as Small contends, and if sociology is largely a matter of interpretation, as he believes, he must accept historical materialism or offer a substitute. “History is just becoming rational, just beginning to ascertain its function and to comprehend its rightful domain. History—not that fragment we now call history, but the record and contemplation of the evolution of things—the history of social conditions and tendencies, of theories and experiments, of laws and institutions, in times gone by—that wider history which narrates events antedating human memory and consciousness—the history of the long processes in the evolution of life on the planet-history which tells of the mighty, unseen cataclysms which took place in the fiery eons of the earth's babyhood—the biography of planets and systems and of the peoples and institutions that have evolved upon them—this is history in its future, rational and universal sense.” Such is the utterance of J. Howard Moore, in his "Better World Philosophy." Is it a mere accident that this new attitude toward history comes after Marx formulated the theory of historical materialism, showing that the rise of the labor movement would necessitate just such an attitude?
And is it an accident that the end of sociology is said to be the socialization of achievement, just at the time when the workers
declare their program to be the socialization of industry? That it is no accident, we may gather from the fact that Ward accepts the Socialist position on this matter, as well as historical materialism, even though he calls himself a "socriocrat" instead of Socialist.
Let us put together what Ward tells us. "National freedom and political freedom have been achieved. Social freedom remains to be achieved." "The movement that is now agitating society is different from any of the previous movements, but it differs from them only as they differ from one another. It is nothing less than the coming to consciousness of the proletariat.” “For the first time in the history of political parties there has been formed a distinctively industrial party, which possesses all the elements of permanence and may soon be a controlling factor in American politics. Though this may not as yet presage a great social, revolution, still it is precisely the way in which a reform in the direction indicated should be expected to originate.” “There is only one live problem, the maximum equalization of intelligence." "The union, associtaion and complete fusion of all races into one great homogeneous race—the race of man-is the final step in social evolution.” “Mankind wants no eleemosynary schemes, no private nor public benefactions, no fatherly oversight of the privileged classes, nor any other form of patronizing hyprocrisy. They only want power—the power which is their right and which lies within their grasp. They have only to reach out and take it. The victims of privative ethics are in the immense majority. They constitute society. They are the heirs of all the ages. They have only to rouse and enter upon their patrimony that the genius of all lands and of all time has generously bequeathed to them.”
And Morgan, too, accepts the Socialist position, when he says: "When the intelligence of mankind rises to the height of the great question of the abstract rights of property,—including the relations of property to the state, as well as the rights of persons to property,a modification of the present order of things may be expected. The nature of the coming changes it may be impossible to conceive; but it seems probable that democracy, once universal in a rudimentary form and repressed in many civilized states, is destined to become again universal and supreme."
The sociology that responds to every test, therefore, is Socialist sociology. It furnishes the pass-key to understand the society of the past and to explain its present structure. It rests upon the theory that material interests are of fundamental importance and that they must be satisfactorily adjusted before there can be peace among mankind. It recognizes that so long as one man anywhere is enslaved, the human race is enslaved. It points to the war of the classes and declares that the future of the working class is the future of society. It brings sociology down to earth and the common man, where it belongs. Its program is the life-giving force to sociology: to socialize achievement by converting the means of production into collective property, thereby making the fullest and freest development of the individual accord with the welfare and progress of society, and replacing the existing chaos and conflict by harmony and happiness.
A COURSE OF READING.
The following list of books is recommended to the student. They cover the subject touched upon by the above article, and it is suggested that they be read in the order named.
Ancient Society. By Lewis Morgan. $1.50.
Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State. By F. Engels. 50c.
Woman under Socialism. By August Bebel. $1.00.
Criminal Sociology. By E. Ferri. D. Appleton & Co., New York.
Positive School of Criminology. By E. Ferri. 50c.
General Sociology. By Albion W. Small. U. of Chicago Press. Chicago.
Psychic Factors of Civilization. By Lester F. Ward. Ginn & Co., Boston.
Applied Sociology. By Lester F. Ward. Ginn & Co., Boston.
By ProF. THOMAS C. Hall, D. D.
NLY on my return from Europe have I had a chance
to read Mr. Isador Ladoff's' article in the number of the Review for August. It was not, therefore, lack of courtesy, nor yet the sense that the article was unanswerable that has caused my silence.
The subject is of such importance that I beg a return to the theme suggested by the title.
Now first to clear the ground a little, Mr. Isador Ladoff's statement that "no orthodox Christian will recognize me as a brother in Christ” is happily beside the mark. I am an accredited teacher in an evangelical school of theology, and preach more or less regularly in the pulpits of at least six different Christian denominations, in one of which I am a minister in good and regular standing. I am glad that my religion "is a rational ethics,” for the ethics of some of my materialist friends seem to me highly irrational.
As for the “gentle art of imparting to the Koran or the Bible any meaning desired," that art is not cultivated in a really modern theological school, and there are now happily many such schools. Nowhere has criticism been freer and more courageous than in the theological faculties of half a dozen schools of learning I could name. It is not generous nor yet true to the facts to cast slurs upon the personal sincerity of men who have stood for truth as they saw it, often at great personal sacrifice. Moreover protestant ministers are not a "priestly caste,” though the caste spirit is unhappily no monopoly of any calling
The dogmatism of Mr. Ladoff reminds me of the apologetics of the third century. What "history proves" is so wide a field, and is so dependent upon the historian and what he wants to prove that it is almost fruitless to follow up, as one might, the various dogmatic statements as to what "history proves” and ask for the proofs.
Science is nothing but systematized and organized experience. And to have any science at all one must start with faith that the world is in some sense knowable. No supposable knowledge can make this faith superfluous. It is relatively useless to try and stem the torrent of Mr. Ladoff's dogmatic assertions by asking what he means by his terms; and expressions that Mr. Ladoff regards as "meaningless," may just possibly be only meaningless to him, and that on account of an imperfect knowledge of the ground they cover.
Now, leaving the details of Mr. Ladoff's article, I turn to the main trouble not only with Mr. Ladoff's article but with Mr. Ladoff and many of his friends and followers.
This trouble is a twofold one. First, Marxian Socialism is "going the way” or in danger of going the way of all great propaganda movements. It is so much easier to force personal assurances dogmatically down the people's throats than actually to produce inward assurance that Marxian Socialism is in danger of becoming as hard, as narrow and as unscientific as Dogmatic Christianity became through her struggle for imperial sway. Christianity was, “history proves," a proletarian movement. All doubt has now been fully removed as to that point by the work of Professor Deissmann among the Hellenistic inscriptions of the early church. Because it was a religious movement it was the one force that gave promise of binding society together. And as such, after trying out various oriental cults, the Roman emperors adopted it. It was at this point that it became dogmatic, and for the obvious reason that its social function was unity, and dogma seemed to that age the only basis of unity.
But dogma is not the best basis for unity. An inward spirit, and a common purpose is, as a matter of fact, a far better basis, as Greek patriotism and religious history show. Differences of opinion may be very wide if only the common purpose be even fairly well understood. It is most unfortunate that Marxian Socialism was born amidst German oppression, and at a time when an enslaved state church was the hand-maid of petty despotism. This misfortune will be doubly great if into our American life all the old and bitter misunderstandings come and poison the struggle for a new social order at the very start.
There are only two classes of men: Those of good will, willing to work and labor unselfishly for the coming new social order, of which Jesus dreamed and called the “reign of God” on earth; and men selfishly devoting themselves to personal and narrow ends.
Now, Karl Marx has a message for all “men of good will." He has thrown great light upon history, he has supplied a definite faith to many thousands, and he has pointed out an effective party tactic. There is absolutely nothing in the main outlines of the Marxian system that any Christian man may not hold. There are hundreds of “men of good will” who are ignorant socially, and who do more harm