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April 29, 1923 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 1923-04-29
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SUNDAY, APRIL 29, 1923

SUNDAY, APRIL 29, 1923


Hamlin Garland I
If Hamlin Garland's parents had) more be accused of being under Rus
not been of'pioneer stock, if they'had sian or Scandinavian influences thant
been content to remain -in rutted he could be mistaken for Manpassant.'
comfort, living in complacent security He is not just American; he is unal-
instead of being driven by some un- loyed middle-west.
compromising internal force to find If there were no other reason, Hamr-;
satisfaction in life with privation and tin Garland's books would live for
weariness for a courageous struggle their historical value alone. His is
on a border farm, the first American the one valid record of rural life dur-
realist would have undoubtedly been ing the last half of the- nineteenth
other than Hamlin Garland. He was century that we have and it is 'more
born in central Wisconsin before than valid; it is almost livid. What
Babbittry was thought of as a prin- Drieser has done for Chicago at the
cipal by-product of America, one year close of that period, Hamlin Garland
previous to the Civil War. The en- has done for the spirit of the northern
wMississippi basin. He is like Dreiser
too, in the way his characters seem to
live divorced from the care of their
creator, though naturally they are a
little more subdued and do not stand
out with the vigor of Sister Carrie,
for example, or Jenny Gerhardt. In
"A Branch Road" a lover who quar-
relied years ago with his rural in-
amorata returns to discover that she?
is miserable and unhappy with her
husband and the lover tempts her
away with him from the nagging ofi
her household. The author makes no
pretence of showing the moral side
of this--- it is a bare 'act sublimated to
a story. I daresay that sounds fiat
as cold mush to us, thoroughly in-
oculated against thrills at seductions
Ior badly jammed domesl.city where
{ ~conventions are pleasingly adjustable;
to individual urges. but please recall
ag:in the neriod when this wvas writ- !
ten and reflect.
n{ 1'I quote from the Foreword to "Main
Travelled Roads": "On my way west
ward. . . . the ugliness, the endless
drudgery, and the loneliiWss of the
farmer's lot smote me with stern in-
sistence. I was the militant reform-
er." Although I cannot doubt that.
I am glad that Hamlin Garland found
P lv tY s p ose,=ar a great hate, for-without it we would
IIAMLIN GARAND not have had "The Return of the
Private" and several other stories
vironment of a constant fight with the which are provocative of delight. I
soil, the settling of new lands and think Hamlin Garland -over-estimat-
the drabness and dull disappoint- ed himself when he used "militant",
ments of frontier farming stamped unless that meant ten per cent re-
the impression of that life deep in him. former to ninety per cent artist. As
ills first book, "Main Travelled an addendum, Hamlin Garland has
Roads", was rublished in 1887 and written an excellent appreciation of
.s'owed a definite departure from the Frank Norris.
trend of American fiction which has
left the period free from any literary
landmarks. For the time it was dar- AOng the Magazines
ing; a bare picture of the ploddng
drudgery of the nid-wesern farm By N. B.
life, dust and heat and sweat, of worn- THE YALE REVIEW
en made Trudges before they were out
of her wetie ty hemonotonous' you must excuse me for reading
of their twenties by the mndt ndsCaptain Jimmy's "Whiz Bang" and
labor of cooking for farm-hands and Nathan's and Menken's "The Smart
working in sun-baked fields. But in. Set" just before taking up The Yale
it all was a beauty which was deep Review: that is the reason why I find
and a feeling for humanity that (id this estimable 'National Quarterly'
more than merely attract attention. pretty dull. It is like escaping a cy-
The period was neither one of satire clone by going into a mausoleum-one
nor of the social introspection which feels reasonably safe in the dignified
causes r. Sinclair Lewis' books to place, yet one is not altogether con-
be republished; the fin de siecle in- foi-table-on account -of the stillness.
uences had not yet been felt so his There is no doubt but that The Yale
originality and vision should be more Review is' designed for the private-
appreciated from those facts. Ham- study, and for "the chosen- few who
lin Garland is going to lecture here dwell therein.
May 4, in Hill auditorium and the By this I do not mean to intimate
people of Ann Arbor shall have the that The Yale Review is unworthy of
chance of hearing a man who started consideration. As a matter of fact, in
a new path in American literature. these hurry-skurry days dullness is
The most remarkable thing about his the passport to sanity. After all, the
writing is the rdfreshing freedom quietness is not comparable to a mau-
from mere cleverness that at times soleum versus a cyclone; but to a
completely damns many authors of the business meeting in a bankversus a
minte.Oftn hs witig i hoe-congregation of inmates in an nsante,
minute. Often his writing is eoibe- asylum.' The dignity is the essence of
ly, it is always naive and inexoribly the authority.
his own. To read "A Son of the Now -I am not conservative; but
Middle Border" and to re-read "Main neither am I radical. It is the privi-
Travelled Roads," skipping the period lege of criticism, . believe, to sit on a
at the beginning of this century when tall fence and from hat pinnacle to
he withdrew for a while from the observe what has been passed and

life he knew best, is like eating what is to be passed. In such a situa-
Southern beaten biscuits with home- tion the critic, rather contemplates
churned butter after a diet of ca- than follows, rather perceives. than
viare and truffles. I hope that nothing pushes ahead. From such a vant- ge
has been said to give one the im- point, I find the Yale Review to he
pression that Hamlin Garland re- ;quite as pertinent and va1hable to the
calls strongly the infinite depression modern age as is The Dial and Broon.
if the Russians. So keenly does his It. is distinctly a niagazine of the
writing reflect the country and set- works of serious thinkers. There is
tings of his stories that he could no (Continued on Page Five)


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POPULAR can find. The work is very- readable f ' AMONG THE MAGAZINES The purchase x
PSYCHOLOGY and the points made are-well support- f (Continued-from Page -Five) the Yale Review
PY O Ojed by illustrations and references to L. Fisher, President of the Board of conscientious re
HUMAN CHARACTER. By Hugh El-i daily life. !Education in England, writes of "Six
Un-versity -ot MR.Years of Education in England"; Wilis
Riiwdb .B kgs MR. HAMSUN STRAYS l iam Oliver Stevens splendidly sur " * "
At the est the reader learns that VICTORIA by Trut Hamnsun, Alfred veys the navel holiday in'Scrapping be lke buying a
-- schoogy is not for he most part A. Knopf, Publisher, $1.75. fMahan'; and finafly Kenneth Scott La an excellent varn
linked up with the other sciences, ex- . Reviewed by Robert Locke tourette writes of "Present Conditions assortment of en
cept in so far as it has profited by The seventh volume, of Knut Ham- in China. Other articles (the Yale what is better s
p siology" Alo w e sun's work, to be published in this Review is all criticism save a little volume to -look f
is merely a collection of haphazard country, is, "Victoria," which came verse) are: "What is it Like in Ire- mcnths hence.
and isolated observations, the signifi- from the Alfred A. Knopf press last land by Stephen Gwynn, Louis Pas-
cange of which is obscure." Haing month. It is the simple love idyll of teur," by W. W. Keen; and "Window TH E DOUBLE
read these statements we are very Victoria and Johannes, the daughter Lore," by Karle Wilson Baker. The! lay in printing, i
suspicious that the author has not of a wealthy aristocrat and a miller's !Pasteur essay is enlightening but over- April issue. As
Ioiowed closely the modern deve'op- Ison. Love is born between them in enthusiastic and becomes high-strung great number of
toaowd clselythe oderddetlop-towards the end. W indow Lore" is Iw-hich are vWell c
ment of physiological and experiment- their childhood at which period it towardsntheied.sWdo. Lar we s
al psychology. Having finished the -noted by the usual childish antics, a charming bird study. pard writes a st
book we feel sure that such is the jealousies, bashful approaches and he- In addition to the above named es- in w hich he shc
case. Psychology has its background roic yarns with which he impressed says there are sixteen book-reviews, Master of langu
of theories, laws, and principles and 1 his lady-love with his great know- of which the authors include William s a ran
pursues a scietnific method of attack ledge of giants and beautiful princess- ,McFee, Bliss Perry, Alice Brown, W al- Papini, whose 'L
on its problems. Already a very re-j es of other worlds. Later, when such ter L'ppmnann. and W. B. Drayton Hen- being read. Art
spectable body of experimental fact an attraction leads to intent towals derson. The books are mostly serious pears but to a d
has been accumulated and the above mating, Victoria had been taught the books which are not generally rc- writes briefly of
statements by Elliot merely indicate impropriety of such a love which made viewed at length. in other periodicals. must assign a blt
lack of acquaintance-with these things her assume the 'grand - lady' attitude The noetry in the Yale Review is us- will go to Cuth
or else he considers them worthless. toward him, the miller's son. Each , ually admirable, but for some reason, of Arthur Mach
The book is intended to reach the display of coldness was, however, a' April seems to be an off number for is not at all nota
general reader and help him solve cut in her own heart, for she truly - it. The best in the volume is Elinor ial or painful.
practical problems. The 4author takes loved him. , Wylie's "Benvenuto's Valentine" which Maxwell Boden
his fling at the "academic psycholo- Johannes left home in order to at- shows a delicate fancy. "Memory" is Dresbach, and C.
gist" by saying that "The so-called tend the University where heidevelop- by Theodore Maynard. (Continued
psychologist of academic renown us- ed a surprising literary talent. His
ually finds himself more interested in poems were to Victoria and her-
ineasuring reaction times" 'than in thoughts were all of him. They met
helping people solve their problems. in the city, where she was visiting the
Again, the academic psychologist is family of her aristocratic fiance and
mentioned as -one who often knows she confessed her love for him but
little of ' actual human nature.' Such tried to explain the futility of that
criticisms are hardly fair and we love-the unscalable barrier between N AJ T O N A 1
doubt whether the majority of psy- them. The .knowledge of her love,?
chologists can be accused of lack of however, was all that Johannes could N K
field observation. The authcr belongs grasp.- This stimulated him and with
to that group that feels that psycholo- great energy he wrote and succeeded ORG A N1Z PD 18 c;
gistsi should 'solve practical problems' ;with his work. I
in spite of the warning by experiment- Despite the frequent signs of love
al psychologists that psychology is as Victoria announced her engagement to
yct an infant science. Otto, a rich, young aristocrat. Johan-
The main themle of -the hook can b~e i nes was heart-broken but no inore so,'
very briefly stated. "The study of hu-;-twe feel, than Victoria. Otto, the fiance,
.man character is the study of motives"~ was hill1ed, however, during a hunt.1
-and--"motives do not spring from This death blasted the hopes of Vic-I.
intellect but from feeling: that the torii's father for financial resuscita-
world of human life is governed, not tion and caused him to- commit suicide,
by reison, but by passion, emotion, and leaving Victoria and her moth er in the ~
sentiment." The major passions are city. But Johannes stays away from :: ::.OLDESTBA K IN ANN AR
classed as egotism (self preservation), them. Victoria died shortly, of weakOLDEST BANKoro nANNdAR
love (race reproduction), and social cued lungs and, we feel, of a broken OLDEST NATIONAL BANK IN M
emotions (maintenance of society). 'heart. Before she (lied she wrote Jo-
Jealousy and religion are derivative hannes: "Now I shall never see you
n'Aaina ''han iron hntf f n-ini azain. so now I am sorry that I did ~ -+++

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passions. Th'ere are a host of minor ugaw , Uuw1aia.,i ia .
emotions " which are of less depth not throw myself down and kiss your
than intensity." The biological signi- shoe and the ground you trod on, to
ficance of these emotions is considered show you how unspeakably I have
an-d the evolutionary view point em- I!loved 'you. I -have lain hefe both yes-
phasized. terday and today wishing I could be I
The chapter on Thought is probably just well encugh to go home and walk!
the weakest chapter in the book. All in the wood and find the place where
thought is an emotion for the author, we sat when you held both my hands;
but, despite his assertion, he finds for then I could lie down there and,
some difficulty in keeping thought as ; see if I could find the trace of you and
an emotion. The chapter on Genius kiss all the heather about." But she
is another weak, if not actually mis- died before the letter was delivered, I
leading, chapter. Genius is a lop- and in this strain-doloroso con
sided development, thinks the author ;amore-the story ends, ". . . But
and genius, being well developed along now I have no more strength to write.
one line, will be woefully underdevel- Goodbye my beloved. . .
oped along other lines. All this in In many ways the attitude of this
spite of the daily findings by the psy- I story is much too sweet. The beauty
chologists that the great minds are of this idyllic love overshadows the
evenly developed and not 'lop-sided' or pangs of heart, caused by the frustra-
psychopathic. tion of their love, and the mental an- i
The chapters on Religion and on !guish of the young author. HamsunI
Vice and Crime are -worth careful forgot those qualities which made
reading. Other chapters, while sus- "Dreamer" and "Hunger" such power-
tained as far as interesting daily ob- ful stories. When he wrote "Victoria,"
servations are concerned, are too gen- he must have been in that period
eral and indefinite for technical value. which he ascribes to Johannes when !
-.The author is a keen observer and he has him write, "Dear reader, here
the wealth of observations and corn- is the tale of Didrik and Iselin. Writ-'
ments on life situations are interest- ten in the good s'eason, in the days oft
ing. But while we must accredit him smallsorrows, when everything vas;
with emphasizing these basic, heredi- easy to bear, written with 'the very!
tary 'driving forces' as lying behind best intention about Didrik whom God
human decisions and actions, his short smote with love. . ."
comings are those of all popular psy- In spite of this attitude, however,
chologists (including the poets and it is the work of the inimitable Ham-1
novelists). They must all rely upon sun. The analysis and sympathy with
field observations and this method is =which he creates his characters and
full of pitfalls. One must turn .to the directs their every movement makes
laboratory where he can control con- the book a work of real art. His Vic-
ditions if his observations are to be toria struggles against her love for
of scientific value. Johannes in a manner which makes
Taken as a system of psychology the one gasp at the precision which he hits
author presents but a crude and gen- the -mark of feminine psychology. She
eral treatment. The need for an ex- is-rude to him and yet she visits his
perimental foundation is obvious and parents to casually ask-what they have
there are many statements which are heard from him; she shuns him and
of extremely doubtful validity. Some yet she takes his favorite walks
of these are directly opposed to the thrcugh the woods in hopes that she
findings of experimental psychology. will meet him. Thus this keen char-
However, in spite of all this, the book acter analysis and the artistry of thed
presents as full and as adequate a tragic end, which Hanmsun has retain-
treatment of the relation between ed even, ". . i.n the good season
heredity predispositions (emotions and in the- days of small esorrows. . .
instincts) and human actions as one makes te book worthy of his name.

..._ _
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