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economic instruction in England is even larger than this.” 1 To-day through pupils and the pupils of pupils his dominion is almost complete. More than most men he could, when the time came for him to go away, repeat his Nunc Dimittis, on a comparison of his achievement with the aim he had set himself in the concluding sentence of his Inaugural Lecture in 1885 : “It will be my most cherished ambition, my highest endeavour, to do what with my poor ability and my limited strength I may, to increase the numbers of those whom Cambridge, the great mother of strong men, sends out into the world with cool heads but warm hearts, willing to give some at least of their best powers to grappling with the social suffering around them; resolved not to rest content till they have done what in them lies to discover how far it is possible to open up to all the material means of a refined and noble life.”
Marshall retired from the Chair of Political Economy at Cambridge in 1908, aged sixty-six. He belonged to the period of small salaries and no pensions. Nevertheless he had managed out of his professorial stipend (of £700, including his fellowship), which he never augmented either by examining or by journalism,3 to maintain at his own expense a small lending library for undergraduates, to found a triennial Essay Prize of the value of £60 4 for the encouragement of original research, and privately to pay stipends of £100 a year to one, or sometimes two, young lecturers for whom the University made no provision and who could not have remained otherwise on the teaching staff of the School of Economics. At the same time, with the aid of receipts from the sales of his books," he had saved just sufficient to make retirement financially possible. As it turned out, the receipts from his books became, after the publication of Industry and Trade, so con
1 “ The Economic Movement in England,” Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. II. p. 92.
? It must be recorded, in the interests of impartiality, that Dr. Jowett took strong exception to this phrase.
3 All his many services to the State were, of course, entirely unpaid.
- In 1913 he transferred to the University a sufficient capital sum to provide an equivalent income in perpetuity.
5 He always insisted on charging a lower price for his books than was usual for works of a similar size and character. He was a reckless proof-corrector, and he kept matter in type for years before publication. Some portions of Industry and Trade, which he had by him in proof for fifteen years before publication, are said to constitute a “record ” He never regarded books as income-producing objects, except by accident.
siderable that, at the end of his life, he was better off than he had ever been; and he used to say, when Macmillan's annual cheque arrived, that he hardly knew what to do with the money. He has left his Economic library to the University of Cambridge, and most of his estate and any future receipts from his copyrights are also to fall ultimately to the University for the encouragement of the study of Economics.
Freed from the labour of lecturing and from the responsibility for pupils," he was now able to spend what time and strength were left him in a final effort to gather in the harvest of his prime. Eighteen years had passed since the publication of the Principles, and masses of material had accumulated for consolidation and compression into books. He had frequently changed his plans about the scope and content of his later volumes, and the amount of material to be handled exceeded his powers of co-ordination. In the preface to the fifth edition of the Principles (1907) he explains that in 1895 he had decided to arrange his material in three volumes : I. Modern Conditions of Industry and Trade; II. Credit and Employment; III. The Economic Functions of Government. By 1907 four volumes were becoming necessary. So he decided to concentrate upon two of them, namely : I. National Industry and Trade; and II. Money, Credit and Employment. This was the final plan, except that, as time went on, Employment was squeezed out of the second of these volumes in favour of International Trade or Commerce. Even so, twelve more years passed by, before, in his seventyseventh year, Industry and Trade was published.
During this period the interruptions to the main matter in hand were inconsiderable. He wrote occasional letters to The Times—on Mr. Lloyd George's Budget (1909), in controversy with Professor Karl Pearson on “Alcoholism and Efficiency" (1910), on “A Fight to a Finish” and “ Civilians in Warfare” on the outbreak of war (1914), and on Premium Bonds (1919). He wrote to the Economist in 1916 urging increased taxation to defray the expenses of the war; and in 1917 he contributed a chapter on “ National Taxation after the War” to After-War Problems, a volume edited by Mr. W. H. Dawson.
Marshall's letters to The Times on the outbreak of war are of some interest. When he was asked, before war was actually declared, to sign a statement that we ought not to go to war because we had no interest in the coming struggle, he replied : “I think the question of peace or war must turn on national duty as much as on our interest. I hold that we ought to mobilise instantly, and announce that we shall declare war if the Germans invade Belgium; and everybody knows they will.” For many years he had taken seriously Pan-Germanic ambitions; and he headed his letter “ A Fight to a Finish.” Thus he took up a definitely anti-pacifist attitude, and did not fluctuate from this as time went on. But he was much opposed to the inflaming of national passions. He remembered that he had “known and loved Germany," and that they were “a people exceptionally conscientious and upright."1 He held, therefore, that “it is our interest as well as our duty to respect them and make clear that we desire their friendship, but yet to fight them with all our might.” And he expressed “an anxiety lest popular lectures should inflame passions which will do little or nothing towards securing victory, but may very greatly increase the slaughter on both sides, which must be paid as the price of resisting Germany's aggressive tendencies.” These sentiments brought down on him the wrath of the more savage patriots.
1 He still continued, up to the time of the war, to see students in the afternoons—though perhaps former pupils (by that time young dons) more than new. comers.
At last, in 1919, Industry and Trade appeared, a great effort of will and determination on the part of one who had long passed the age when most men rest from their labours.
It is altogether a different sort of book from the Principles. The most part of it is descriptive. A full third is historical and summarises the results of his long labours in that field. The co-ordination of the parts into a single volume is rather artificial. The difficulties of such co-ordination, which had beset him for so many years, are not really overcome. The book is not so much a structural unity, as an opportunity for bringing together a number of partly related matters about which Marshall had something of value to say to the world. This is particularly the case with its sixteen Appendices, which are his device for bringing to birth a number of individual monographs or articles. Several of these had been written a great number of years before the book was issued. They were quite well suited to separate publication, and it must be judged a fault in him that they were hoarded as they were.
1 “Those,” he wrote to The Times on August 22, 1914, “who know and love Germany, even while revolted at the hectoring militarism which is more common there than here, should insist that we have no cause to scorn them, though we have good cause to fight them. ... As a people I believe them to be exceptionally conscientious and upright, sensitive to the calls of duty, tender in their family affections, true and trusty in friendship. Therefore they are strong and to be feared, but not to be vilified.”
The three books into which the volume is divided would, like the Appendices, have suffered very little if they had been published separately. Book I., entitled Some Origins of Present Problems of Industry and Trade, is a history of the claims to industrial leadership of England, France, Germany and the United States mainly during the second half of the nineteenth century. Book II., on Dominant Tendencies of Business Organisation, whilst not definitely historical, is also in the main an account of the evolution of the forms of Business Organisation during the second half of the nineteenth century. Book I. is an account of the economic evolution of that period considered nationally; Book II. is an account of it considered technically. Book III., on Monopolistic Tendencies : their Relations to Public Well-being, deals in more detail with the special problems which arose in regard to Transport and to Trusts, Cartels and Combinations during the same period.
Thus such unity as the book possesses derives from its being an account of the forms of individualistic capitalism as this had established itself in Western Europe at about the year 1900, of how they came to pass, and of how far they served the public interest. The volume as a whole also serves to illustrate what Marshall was always concerned to emphasise, namely the transitory and changing character of the forms of business organisation and of the shapes in which economic activities embody themselves. He calls particular attention to the precarious and impermanent nature of the foundations on which England's industrial leadership had been built up.
The chief value of the book lies, however, in something less definite and more diffused than its central themes. It represents the fruits of Marshall's learning and ripe wisdom on a host of different matters. The book is a mine rather than a railway - like the Principles, a thing to quarry in and search for buried treasure. Like the Principles, again, it appears to be an easy book; yet it is more likely, I believe, to be useful to one who knows something already than to a beginner. It contains the suggestions, the starting points for many investigations. There is no better book for suggesting lines of original inquiry to a reader so disposed. But for the ignorant the broad generalisations of the book are too quiet, smooth, urbane, undogmatic, to catch him.
Industry and Trade was a remarkable success with the public. A second edition was called for immediately, and, by the end of 1923, 12,000 copies had been printed. The fact that it was reaching wide circles of readers and met with no damaging