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March 05, 1922 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1922-03-05

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JENS PETER JACOBSEN translated for the first time into Dan-
(A Review by R. D. S.) is While he was carrying n his scien-
From the Scandinavian. countries tiflic work he still retained his love
there has come, especially within the for literature. Consequently, when
"THE STORY OF MANKIND" Some of his touches are excellent; past few years, a great deal of ex- tuberculosis forced him to give up
Botany, he at once turned to writing.
By Hendrik Van Lon he recognizes that the late war was ceptionally fine literature. No doubt, He did not, however, become a poet as
(A Review by A. C. B.) not so much the result of the innate the warding of the Mobel Prize to he had once hoped. Although he had
greed of man as the result of man ob- Knut Hamsun has awakened some of written poetry secretly two years after
"It is more important to feel his- sessed by the development of machine, the interest in the Danish, Norwegian, his graduation, he published only one
tory than to know it." . letting the machine become his master, book of verse. The remainder of his
History is the record of the attempts Van Loon realizes and portrays with and Swedish writers, while the recent work consists of two novels and a
great clarity the gilt which today con- arrangements made by Alfred Knopf book of short stories.
and failures of humanity at harmon- ceals the weaknesses and rottenness with the Gyldendal publishing house Jacobsen was peculiarly well quali-
ious social organization. Histories, of people and institutions. He shows have made more translations obtain- fled to become a novelist. He knew
however, seen to have been written that this fails in its efforts. He states and loved nature thoroughly, and he
always by men better acquainted with t cleverly: "- A Zulu in a frock coat able. had a poetic temperament. Moreover,
books than with human nature. Con- is still a Zulu"-perhaps he could have Hwever, one of the greatest of the he was infinitely patient and painstak-
illustrated his point by using a Con- Scandinavians, Jens Peter Jacobsen, ing. He worked slowly and carefully,
sequently, in the pedantic rubbish of gressman. (It is the custom of the remains much less known in this weighing each word and scrupulously
dates, periods and outlines,--all en- day to abuse Congressmen-even though country than he deserves to be. This choosing the phrasal combinations
veloped in the historians' foggy ide- we are responsible for their existence.) is probably due to the fact that he has that would most vividly transmit his
alism, the almost endless agony that Van Loon has well revealed the fact produced such a small amount of work. thoughts. One word and one word
human nature has endured for a trans- that has been so beautifully stated by But that little is among the best of only would adequately express an idea,
W. H. Hudson in his "Purple Land": modern fiction. he believed; and he worked until he
itory moment of joy-- the terrible '"Ah, yes, we are all vainly seeking Jacobsen was born in Thisted, a lit- found that word.
price of progress--became obscured after happiness in the wrong way, tle town in Jutland, in 1847. His Style should be objective, says
and the valuable lesson to be learned It was with us once and ours, but we childhood was greatly influenced by Schopenhaner, "and it will never be ob-
was 1st. . despised it, for it was only the old the imaginative nature of his mother, jective unless the words are so set
One has often doubted if a history common happiness which Nature gave and he early had dreams of becoming down that they directly force the read-
to all her children and we went away a poet. At the same tihe, his love er to think the same as the author
could ever be written which would from it in search of another grander of nature made him turn toward sci- thought when he wrote them." This
not be too intellectual to be applicable kind of happinsss which some dreamer ence. Eventually he decided to adopt ts the effect Jacobsen produced. Noth-
to human problems, or too academic -Bacon or another-asusred us we Botany as a profession. He became ing was beyond the range of his de-
to represent a record which could be- should find. We had only to conquer intensely interested in this science scriptive ability. He created an atmo-
come an integral part of our living Nature, find out her secrets, make her and won the gold medal at the Uni- sphere vibrant with sounds and colors.
rather than a series of events to be our obedient slave, then Earth would versity of Copenhagen for his thesis on His stories throb with a sensuous joy
read and hazily learned for mere cul- be Eden and every man Adam and a microscopic form of marsh plant-life. of living. They are swept along amidst
tore. We have long needed a history every woman Eve, We are still march- This study, together with his curiosity the luxurious play of sunlight, the opu-
that would intimate the causes and ing bravely on, conquering Nature, about the new ideas of the time, wid- lent perfume of gayly colored flowers,
remedies for the social injustices that but how weary, and sad we are get- ened his field of research and he soon and a chorus of sounds, from the
have grown' through the ages. ting! The old gay life and gaiety of discovered Darwin, whose works he soughing of the wind in the trees to
It was a task to write such a book. heart have vanished, though we some-
Wells made a worthy attempt in his times pause for a few moments irn _ EI11t3ht11f11 111111111i 11ii t11111111 11111t111_
"Outline of History", but the delights our long forced march to watch the
of Utopianism duped him and, begin- labours of some pale mechanician,
ning to babble about the future of a seeking after perpetual motion, and in-
perfect state, he accredited humanity dulge in a little, dry cackling laugh
with more virtues than the best of at. his expense."
Lonhsas.aemnatmt ia bysbo, s rte o hlY our Photograph
men have ever had. Hendrik Van "The Story of Hankind," primarily-
' nhaeeeha.HnrkVn "hStrofM kid"piaiy Loon has also made an attempt. His, a "by's book," is written for chil-
"The Story of Mankind" (Boni and dren of all ages, for all persons with -
Liveright), seems to grow directly minds eternally young for all personso
from human nature itself, who encounter the apparent incompats n o r-e
The healthy buoyancy of the book bilities of life. It is written wito n IO T 6
is delightful. The reader can expect human understanding that is rare in
a humanism that breathes tolerance this machine age. Minds which have
from one whose judges are Pity and been momentarily paralysed by an
Irony; not cruel and inexorable irony, infinite number of contradictory pana- Party.eCsopb win
but irony that gives strength to smile ceas for social problems will be re--
and laugh where perhaps we would laxed and refreshed by the illuminat
be weak enough to hate and despise. ing content of this book.
?IIItH llill I Hi li llllltil llltlllHIIIIllilllll llilllilttlilll11t1ii 1111111UI _ _ _ll
This is the seaon
for such photo-
~rahs -today i -
Love at First Bite graphs - toay is
the day to make
= ~the appointment.
That is what you will think
when you first get one of Phone 598=
_ those good old-fashioned
Besimer Grilled Steaks
"One a day would make you a football man"
Get them opposite the D. U. R. Waiting Station
NiNiuuulliiMallIINHlilu m llllulllllllnlnlllluilliIllulHurll llinum till IalaHl nluulunurnlnrnuunilillinlluuluM llunnurnull nnnuill llnulu:il~l

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