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October 20, 1929 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1929-10-20

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Published every morning except Monay;
during the University year by the Board in
Control of Student Publications.
Member of Western Conference Editorial
The Associated Press is exclusively entitled
to the use for republication of all news dis-
patches credited to it or not otherwisencredited
in this paper and the local news published
Entered at the posto..ce at Ann Arbor,
Michigan, as second class matter. Special rate
of postage granted by Third Assistant Post-
toaster General.
Subscription by carrier, $4:00; by mail, $4.50.
Offices: Ann Arbor Press Building, May-
hoard Street.
Phones: Editorial, 4925; Business, 224.


and contented," a cardinal first
move must be the establishment of
a sound and equitable pension en-
dowment. Until this is done it is
certain that no one will be attract-
ed here from Harvard or Cornell,
and it is not unlikely that these in-
stitutions will further gut our staff.
We feel that President Ruthven's
desire to build a strong faculty is
the soundest possible policy, and tot
this end we would hasten the an-
nouncement of pensions on which
professors can retire without hav-
ing to give up their homes and al-
ter their standards of living.

About Books

O City, Cities! by
Larsson, Payson and
York City, $2.50.

R. Ellsworth
Clarke, New


Telephone 4925


Reviewed by R. E. McCracken
Any interpretation of romantic
literature points to an understand-
ing of the author's personality. The
introspection of romanticism al-
lows this insight, for we catch the
writer at an intense moment of ex-
perience. This idea may be of fan-
cy, revelrie, pathos, or humor, and
poetry, particularly lyric, is more
susceptible to expressing this emo-
tional state than any other kind.
The recent volume, "O City, Ci-
ties!" of R. Ellsworth Larsson is
romantic in all meaning of the
word, and as such the faults of that
tendency are inherent. He has held
a prism to his eyes, this poet, and
has written down for us the im-
ages he sees through the glass.

Editorial CommentI


Music And Drama
40 o!
Easter and Other Plays by Aug-
ust Strindberg; Jonathan Cape and
Harrison Smith, N. Y. C.; (Review
copy by courtesy of the Print and
Book Shop).
This is the first publication of the
Anglo-Swedish Foundation, made
possible by the grand gesture of
Bernard Shaw in refusing the forty
odd thousand dollars of the Nobe!
prize and suggesting that itabe used
to promote a knowledge and ap-
preciation of the literature and art
of Sweden in Great Britain. Jona-
than Cape is handling this impor-
tant series in England and will dis-
tribute in America through the New
York branch.
The choice of a new edition ofj
Strindberg's plays for the first work
of the series is fortunate. Amer-
ica hardly has an adequate per-
spective on the Swedish arch-sub-
jectivist. It has heard amusing
rumors of a Swedish madman who
hated all women ferociously and
married three or four of the
wretched things to prove it. Ac-
tors, directors, and readers think
Strindberg depressing, extreme,
very ugly. Their minds are hardly
contemporary. Strindberg's art,
though thirty or forty years old.

Editor................. .... George C., Tilley
City Editor................Pierce Rosenberg
News Editor ..........George E. Simons
Sports Editor ........Edward B. Warner, Jr.
Women's Editor...........Marjorie Foilmer
Telegraph Editor...........George Stauter
Music and Drama..... ,... William 3. Gorman
Literary Editor.........Lawrence R. Klein
Assistant City Editor....-Robert J. Feldman
Night Editors
Frank E. Cooper Robert L. Sloss
William C. Gentry Gurney Williams, Jr
Henry J. Merry Walter Wilds
Charles R. Kaufman


Charles A. Askren
Helen Bare
Luuist Bebymer
Thomas M. Cooley
W. H. Crane
Ledru E. Davis
Helen Domine
Margaret Eckels
Katherine Ferrin t
Carl Forsythe
Sheldon C. Fullerton
Ruth Geddes
Ginevra Gin
Edmund Glavin
Jack Goldsmith
D. B. Hempstead, Jr.I
James C. Hendley
Richard T. Hurley
Jean H. Levy
ussell E.. McCracken
Lester M. May

William Page
Gustav R. Reich
John D. Reindel
Jeannie Roberts
Joe Russell
Joseph F. Ruwitch
William P. Salzarulo
George Stauter
Cadwell Swanson
Jane Thayer
Margaret Thompson
Richard L. Tobin
Beth Valentine
Harold 0. Warren
Charles S. White
G. Lionel Willens
Lionel G. Willens
J.E. Willoughby
Barbara Wright
Vivian Zimit

Telephone 21214

Assistant Manager

Department Managers
Advertising .............Hollister Mabl:y
Advertisin ..........Kasper H. Halverson
Advertising ................ Sherwood Upton
Service............George Spater
Circulation.................J. Vernor Davis
Acconnts......................Jack Rose
Publications.................eorge Hamilton
Raymond Campbell Lawrence Lucey
T-o-. W. C'nrtwria~ I . ,

Harry B. Culver
Thomas M. Davi
Norman Eliezer
Donald 1wing
James lHoffer
Norris Johnson
Charles Kline
Marvin Kohacker
Laura Codling
Bernice Glaser
Hortehse Gooding
Anna Goldberg

ght "ThomasMi
Charles Sanford
is Lee Slayton
Robert Sutton
Roger C. Thorpe
Joseph Van Riper
Robert Williamson
William R. Worboys
Alice McCully
Sylvia Miller
g Helen E. Musselwhite
Eleanor Walkinshaw
Dorothea Waterman

Night Editor - Charles Kaufman
Following Harvard's lead, Cornell
has gotten under way a fund out of
which will be supplemented the
pensions paid to retired professors
by the Carnegie Foundation for the
Advancement of Teaching. Since
the Carnegie collapse and retrench-
ment of last spring, at which time
the foundation's administrators
found it necessary almost to halve
their promises to pay, the univer-
sities which were to benefit have
been faced with the problem of
making their own supplementary
provision for faithful servants past
the age of usefulness.
Harvard's trustees, with a repu-
tation for doing consistently right
by the faculty, were the first to the.
rescue with an announcement last
June of a handsome pension en-
dowment. Last Thursday the Cor-
nell Alumni corporation announced
a gift of $200,000 toward a pension
fund, conditional on the raising of
another $800,000. The cause is so
worthy and so necessary to the fu-
ture of the teaching profession that
there can be little fear that Cor-
nell's million-dollar endowment will
not go over the top.
Michigan has been a little slower
to take this vital step. An able
committee was appointed last
spring by the Regents, but it has
as yet produced no recommenda- 1
tions or given Michigan's faculty
definite expectations of anything
more than a good steel worker'sE
pension. The problem, of course,1
demands careful study, but wex
would urge as strongly as possible
an immediate and generous reme-
dy for the terrifying uncertainty
which now confronts those who are
approaching the retirement age. 1
President Ruthven's platform re-2
cognizes that "the effectiveness of'
the University may be said to bet
determined by the men which com-
pose its faculties .... that admin-
istrators who fully appreciate the f

One of the chief advantages in
attending large educational insti-
tutions is the constant opportunity
to hear and know the world's great-
est artists, scientists, thinkers, and
doers in all fields. These men and
women of note can be attracted to
universities of size and fame like
Michigan's by the appeal of car-
rying their accomplishments and
inspiration to the intellectually vig-
orous youth of the nation. There
is the added and very real advan-
tage that on a large scale the thing
can be done within the financial
means of the traditionally impe-
cunious student.
In this field of extra-curricular
activity Michigan has her Univer-
sity lectures, Choral Union, May
Festival, and Oratorical association.
Again this year they all offer rich
and glittering programs of the fin-
est possible entertainment.
(Christian Science Monitor)
Whether the small college or the
large university offers the greater
advantages has long been to Amer-
ican youths one of their hardest
nuts to crack when planning for
their higher education. In choos-
ing the one, the student had to for-
go the special advantages of the
other. Significant trends, however,
have lately come to light, showing
that ways are being worked out so
that a student may enjoy the com-
bined benefits of both. In Clare-
mont, Calif., a system of colleges is
being established under a plan that
keeps each within a reasonably
small enrollment, so that both the
institution and the student may
maintain and develop their respec-
tive individualities, and so that
students and professors may have
the close contacts which they so
much value, and at the same time
enjoy the total facilities of all the
Of a somewhat different form,
yet accomplishing much the same
results, are opportunities offered by
certain colleges which have affiliat-
ed with Columbia and by those
which have federated into what is
known as Western Reserve Univer-
sity. Working from the other di-
rection-that is, dividing instead of
combining-splitting the overgrown
college or university into small
units, so that contacts between
students and teachers may be rich-
er and more frequent, is the House
Plan at Harvard.
These trends may be interpreted
in another way. Mass education,
which has even been strenuously
attacked in its factory like form,
was not brought into existence by
intention; few intelligent educa-
tors of today have attempted its de-
fense; and now, except as it may be
qualified by small-unit methods, it
seems to present little that is
ideal. On the other hand, the large
university has contributed a
breadth of training and experience,
and has caused facilities to be
brought together on such an un-
limited scale as to have won an un-
disputed place.
The isolated small college holds
forth in diminishing glory. While
still supreme in one kind of educa-
tion, its scope is too limited to meet
all the complex demands of this
modern era of reaching out, of co-
operation and of co-ordination of;
all available means. It may be said;
therefore, that mass education and1
the education of the isolated small

college have left their pedestals and
each recognizing the other, are ap-
proaching each other on a common
mission, that of combining and ad-;
justing their heretofore separated
Frequent, human and friendly
contact must be possible between
professor and student if scholarly
attainment is to be. both sane and
secure. Youth may not literally sit!
on a log with its teacher, but, if a
boy can have an occasional stroll
across the campus with his pro-
fessor, or chat as friend to friend1

a night in midwinter-and
that screams along the boule-
like shattered women
fleeing a bombarded town


34 /

There is also
self-assured feeling

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the middle ages
stumbled and were lost

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the season and the worm
can scrawl a dry sarcasm on the
walls and all
these cities we have sown
The picture is of nostalgia, and
though distorted we accept it with-
out caring a whit. It is received
for its own sake with no why and
!wherefor. Who cares if there is
absence of technique? A quiet
hour with pictures-an autonomy
all one's own-a forgetting of facts:
this the verse offers, and it is all.
The beauty of the word is some-
thing that escapes most of us. We
are too prosaic. We restrain emo-
tion until the nerve is deadened.
But Mr. Larsson stirs up our fires,.
and we are left quivering as after
symphony. He has placed his words
on the page in such arrangement
as to demand music, and the form
entirely suits the nostalgia of sub-
ject. Each line (and they are short)
presents an image; the lines
flow one after another in a quiet-
ness which resembles the style of
the later George Moore. This po-
etry is song: what a relief from
the poets who will ever be associat-
ed with library stacks!
Mr. Larsson is a minor poet.
However, he is intensely engaging
and worthy of reading. The ex-
perience is narrow and perhaps he
does not "know enough." For the
most part, he is not even impres-
sionist, and merely capable of ex-
citing mood. In this way he stands
only at the very beginning of cre-
ation, even though he is romanti-
* * *
In his new book, "The Quest of
Certainty," John Dewey is said to
give the most complete develop-
ment he has yet made of his ex-
perimental theory of thinking and
knowledge. This development, while
containing the foundations of an
experimental logical method, is not
written from the point of view of
technical logic. It begins with the
causes which historically started
philosophy on the track of placing
purely theoretical knowledge on a
level superior to that which in-
volves practical doing and making.
The discussion then shows how
the scientific revolution begun in
the seventeenth century and log-
ically brought to a climax in the
new physics of recent yeais re-
quires a radically different concep-
tion of thinking, knowing, and
their relation to doing. The book
concludes with a discussion on the
bearing of this change upon the
future of philosophy, religion, and
the social sciences generally hold-
ing that the tendency is to unite
science and human well-being in
a new form of scientific humanism
based on the interaction of the-
ory and practice, understanding,
and action.
"The Quest of Certainty" is based
on the Gifford Lectures, given by
Professor Dewey at the University
of Edinburgh in the spring of 1929.
He is the third lecturer from the,
United States, the others being
James and Royce, on the Gifford;
Foundation, doubtless the most'
distinguished lectureship in the
Fiction: "A Farewell to Arms," J
by Ernest Hemingway; "Hans

The trouble is that this strenu-
ous, nervous spirit has revolution-
ised some of the pet conceptions
of the aesthetic of the theatre.
Strindberg absolutely insisted on
revealing the antimonies of his
soul. They were so violent that
many of the conventions and for-
mulas the theatre had been long
in constructing proved useless to
him. He had trouble with the con-
ventional view of tragedy. Noble
and naked absolutes grimly face to
face with ultimate resolution of
their difficulties was all right when
the heroes were kings and queens
allowed to make vigorous and vic-
ious decisions. The tragedy Strind -
berg wanted to write was a tragedy
of people who seldom are given the
opportunity to make decisions.l
Strindbergh views life as essential-
ly stable, believing that the con-
flict between duty to the social
compact and duty to oneself can
seldom be so disengaged as to jus-
tify the great gestures of the old
tragic tradition. "There are dis-
harmonies in life that cannot be
resolved" is his view. To see and
then to understand- this is the
only conceivable modern sense of
the purgation that Aristotle spoke
of. Theatre-goers that still seek
the tragedians to eke out a plea-
sant emotional experience for them
somehow call Strindberg's "Dance
of Death" depressing. That is a
dead adjective for an archaic re-
action and should not be injected
into dramatic criticism of natur-
alistic plays. Strindberg gives
them an approach to his work in
his own words: "My pleasure lies
in understanding something."
"The Dance of Death" is proba-
bly the great tragedy of the mod-
ern era. There is no liberating ac-
tion, no appeasement of the heart.
Life is pictured as a hideous strug-
gle in a setting of diabolical fero-
city. He pictures the terrible
struggle of sex-the Captain yield-
ing unrefiectively to his vindictive
impulses and Alice trying to find
moral tags to justify her hatred.
There is passion and horror in this
mutual hatred. Husband and wife
restrict and cling to each other,
trying to enforce agreements and
concessions, trying to establish su-
periority by smashing the integri-
ty of character. Each is at once
a tyrant and a slave. They shift
and waver in attitudes but know
too much of life to rise to the
point of willing in grand gestures.
So they die in their inextricable
bonds. The tragedy has the great
note of the universal in the con-
crete; and the intellectual under-
standing of this compensates for
the lack of the emotional home-run
that the Aristotelian concept for
tragedy demands.
But more interesting to the stu-
dent is Strindberg's extraordinary
influence in the realm of experi-
ment. "The Ghost Sonata" and,
"The Dream Play," included in this
volume, leap from their historical
context and establish the drama-
turgy of the future. Strindberg
succeeded in interpreting reality in
the medium of unreality. "The
Ghost Sonata" is not reducible to
some quick statement about its
meaning. It has the confusion of
a dream; but also its urgent logic.
The play is disordered but slips
from one certainty to another in
a mysterious mode of progression
like to music's. One feels the rough
intimacy of the details and the
force of Strindberg's theatrical in-
stinct. It holds attention with its

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