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December 14, 1930 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 1930-12-14

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SUNDAY, DBCEMBER 14, 1930

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

P'AGE THRI

SUNAYDEEMBR 1, 930THEMIHIGN DIL

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1ilITIC REA IE
PETI_CT RDIWN
TUE DONNE TRADITION: A Study
in English Poetry from Donne to
lhoe Death of Cowley: by George
Williamson: H a r v a r d University
Press, 1930: Price $3.50.
"About the beginning of the 17th
century appeared a race of writers
that may be termed the metaphy-
sical poets." And by the tone of
that remark, and the retundly e>-
phatic condemnation that follow d
Dr.. Johnson forced on all literr ly
historians the conception of te
"Donne tradition" as an isolated,
curious, and rather suspect phen-
omenon in English poetry. Nearly
all critics after Dr. Johnson have
defined "metaphysical poetry" by
certain of its technical defects or
excesses.
But this century has seen a more
substantial reexamination of the
virtues of the poetry of John Don-j
ne and George Herbert particular-
ly in the work of Jessop, Gosse,
Mario Praz, and in the fine editing
of H. J. C. Grierson. But perhaps,
even more influential for the new
understanding, and certainly for
creative imitation of the metaphy-1
sical poets, have been the brilliant
intuitions of T. S. Eliot (scattered.
through "Homage to John Dryden,"'
"The Sacred Wood," the pages of
the Dial, the Criterion, and the+
London Literary Supplement) and]
his own very brilliant poetic prac-l
tice, firm enough evidence in it-
self for the survival and contem-I
porary validity of the tradition.
Eliot's main contentions were:
that the general notion that intel-
lectual analysis is unpoetic unlessI
it receives some sort of fanciful
ublimation is deplorable subser-
vience to nineteenth century taste
and poetry: that the metaphysi-
cal poets' gift of a unified senibil-t
ity in which intellect played at the
tips of the senses was a rare pre-
rogative for the writing of great
poetry: that the influence of two
great poets, Milton and Dryden,t
unfortunately caused the disasso-
ciation of sensibility which left the1
rotion that the possession of a de-
liberate intellect implied a renun-
ciation of emotional force andt
hence an incapacity for poetry.
As opposed to Johnson, he sug-
gested that better results might
ensue from "assuming that the
poets of the seventeenth century
(to the Revolution) were the direct
and normal development of the
precedent age; and by considering
whether their virtue was not some-
thing permanently valuable which
subsequently disappeared but ought
not to have disappeared."
George Williamson does little but
apply the conventional methods of
scholarship to Eliot's intuitions.
Evidence and analysis is accumu-
lated for proof. Then there is the
cataloguing or definition of trends;
all descending from Donne: the re-
ligious (Herbert, Crashaw, Vaugh-
an), the amorous or profane line
(Lord Herbert, King, M a r v e 11,
Townshend), and finally the line
of offenders (Cleveland, Benlowe,
Cbwley). This being a typical aca-
demic trick only justified by more
profound analysis of differences
between poets (say between Her-
bert and Vaughan, and between
both of those and Crashaw, whose
typical virtues were not metaphy-
sical at all) than Williamson seems
capable of.
The more original contributions
in this book include an extended,

and on the whole profitable, dis-
cussion of t h e much-maligned
"conceit" With its redefinition as
profoundly structural and only
fantastic frippery when wantonly
used (by Cowley, Cleveland, and
Crashaw); a chapter tended to
minimise the academic distinction
between the Donne and the Jon-
.sonian influence on the 17th cen-
try lyric by findiingmetaphysical
p ssages in the Caroline lyrists;
and a very useful chapter and ap-
pendix showing that Chapman an-
ticipated Donne in several emotion-
al and technical aspects (again an
Eliot suggestion).
The book is quite satisfactory as
a corrective (for conventional cri-
ticim of the Donne tradition and
for the looseness with which con-
tempoaary journalists sling the
word "metaphysical"). One, how-
ever, awaiits Mr. Eliot's announced
book on "The School of Donne."
W. J. G.
- ~

Carl Grabo Stresses Shelley's Contact
F' Mi - aI Currents of His Day
A NEWTON MONG PETS: by Carl Grabo: A study of Shdlley's Use of
Science in Pcmwtcus Urbud." Chapel Hill: The University of North
Carolina Press, 19 Pp. xiv plus 298. x3.00.
krEvf WW2 C I Ei1 SS>k JI OI1?AR.D MUMFORD JONA-S.
Probably few inte,1igent readers 1nd as evidence is usually lacking,
of Sheihy I o T y a'mroech hr i£JMr. Grabo has necessarily been
terms of what Profe sor G r:o c::cd back to inference and ana-
ca1os . This does not vitiate his con-
ca11s i" aiaiv r. A' Dt"; {. c ons per force, but, like all ar-
approech is ~elv t' b' e+her i Tnamerts from silence, it onens a
pure aesthet_2 s Igtie in hi wide Field for speculation. In gen-
gorgeous nagery an-d cesmic ;7- fe, the astronomical and chemi-
agination or an intlileetual int r- cal portions of his argument seem
to rest on sounder reasoning than
est in his 'hiloonhical and meta- the central hypothesis he seeks to
physical doctrin". it is Professor establish; namely, that for Shelley.
Grabo's tr-sis in The present vOl-jACia, the spirit usually identifiedt
ume that, &envin- no Thing of the with love in the poem, is not mere-
valdit o~eit~e'sec aproahly love but perhaps also an em-
he finds Shelley's inteliection in his bodiment ofan electrical theory of
most important poemi revolving im- matter. The cautious reader is
portantly around the scientific dis- likely to bring in a Scotch verdict
coveries and theories of his day. of guilty, but not proven.
Particularly drawing upon Eras- But whether particular portions
mus Darwin, Sir William Herschel, of his book are weak or not, Mr.
Humphry Davy, and above all New- Grabo is clearly headed in the right
ton, either directly or as their dis~ direction. We have heard too much
coveries and speculations reached of romanticism as something weak,
him through compendiums. or poll- dreamy, and nebulous. Mr. Grabo
ular articles, Shelley fused their is quite right in his insistence that
hypotheses with his Platonic phil- Shelley was a hard-headed and
osophy in the cosmic drama of keen-minded poet. He was intel-
Prometheus Unbound. Professor lectually capable of adopting, as a
Grabo's method something resem- matter of fact he did adopt an "as-
bles that so brilliantly exercised in t r o n o m y ...basically Newtonian
The Road to Xanadu by Professor with the addition of the nebular
J. L. Lowes. hypothesis of Laplace and the ob-
Mr. Grabo's speculations rest up- servations of Herschel." He was
on some important matters of fact. certainly equipped to follow, he
Of Shelley's youthful enthusiasm probably did follow the brilliant
for scientific experiment, pa rticu- scientific speculations of the day.
larly of a dramatic or imaginative And what is true of Shelley is in
sort, there can be no question. That all probability true of some of the
he was intensely alive to the other romantic poets who have
thought of his own age and that been too easily dismissed as weak-
he could scarcely have raissed the ling dreamers in a solipsistic uni-
rich scientific literature of the time verse. The value of Mr. Grabo's
likewise seems indubitable. That study lies, it seems to me, in the
certan passages i Prometheus Un- approach he makes to the intellect-
bound are explicable only by as- ual background of the romantic
suming in the poet a knowledge of movement, and if certain of his
certain astronomical, chemical, or conclusions may be wrong, his book
electrical phenomena o theories as a whole is a welcome relief from
seems likewise well estalished. much current discussion of roman-
Professor Grabo's service lies in tic poetry. It has also the advan-
drawing these elements togethrC tage of being well written, and is
and in offering some suggestive not without a lurking humorous
theories as to the meaning of more irony.
disputable passages and of the
poem as a whole.
His central difficulty lies in prov- FOERSTER EDITS
ing that Shelley read particular AMERICAN FSSAYS
passages in these and other writ-
ers which conveniently explain AME1YCAN CRITICAL ESSAYS:
portions of IL.onietheus Unbound; edited by Norman Foerster for
--~_ ____ World's Classics Edition published
by Oxford Unversity Press 1930:
List f Be7 Sllers In this infliuentia, because popu-
lar, edition, Foerster edits very
NON-FICT ION perspicuously until he gets to the
STORY OF SAN MICHELE by twentieth century. The twentieth

3s
LEJOU ! !Ti

STTS

OF

f

The United States of Europe: by Edouard Herriot, Former Prime
Minister of France: Published by the Viking Press
New York 1930: Price, $3.00. Reviewed
by Professor Preston Slosson.
Since Nietzsche called himself not a good German but a "good
European" the idea of a United States of Europe has been in the air.
"In the air" is, unfortunately, too apt a phrase. Even Herriot's book,.
the practical work of a hard-headed statesman, a former prime minister
of France, is the analysis of an idea rather than the project for a con-
stitution. No one need look for a tight federal constitution in the near
future with bills introduced by Representative Briand from the State
of France or by Senator MacDonald of the State of Britain. The politi-
cal side of the United States of Europe would hardly be a federation or
even a confederacy, rather a peace pact or "regional agreement" within
the more general structure of the Leagu of Nations. Much more impor-
tant, in the author's opinion, is the economic linking up of atomized
Europe.
Take, for example, the way in which political divisions complicate
and interrupt the natural highways of Europe. "The Rhine is a sort of
living being, with a citizenship at once Swiss and French, German and
Dutch" (p. 172). "The Danube has also made possible the fusion of!
races and the exchange of commodities . . . Hence the International!
Commission, which has been able to settle the question of the Sulina
mouth and the passage of the Iron Gate" (p. 173). Postal systems, tele-
graphs, telephones, wireless, electric power, main roads and the chief
railway lines cut across frontiers in crowded Europe in such a manner
as to demand international agreements of all sorts, some of which have
already been achieved. International banking, the International Labor
Conferences under the auspices of the League of Nations, and the cartels
of mine owners demonstrate how the problems of finance, labor and
capital and alike unlimited by political frontiers. Thus Europe is being
gradually bound into one bundle not by any iron chain of a Super-State
but by a million cobweb filaments continually spun by the great spider
of industrialism.
The point of greatest interest to American readers is, of course,
whether the United States of Europe is in any sense directed against the

m p
r 1
NOTH1-G TO PA , by Carado
Evans: Pub ished by W. W. Norton:
New York, I3A: Price, $2,50: Re-
view Copy courtesy Wahr's Book-
store.

UR PE
REIWETT STUDIES]
PUEBLO INDIAN
ANCIENT LIFE IN THE AMERI
CAN SOUTHWEST, by Edgar Le
Hewett: Merrill: Indianapolis, 193
Price $5.00.
Dr. Edgar Lee Hewett, head o
the Department, of Anthropology a
the University of New Mexico, has
presented in this volume a ver
thorough summary of the Indian
culture of the American southwest,
comprising the "four-corners" dis-
trict of Utah, Colorado, New Mexi-
co, and Arizona. Contrary to the
title, the book is not a dry anthro-
pological treatise on an extinct
people, but attempts to give an eva-
lution to the Pueblo civilization,
still in existence, in its relation to
the "European America" which has
surrounded it and is slowly press-
ing in on the periphery with the
ultimate unconscious objective of
choking it into extinction.
The Pueblo peoples were well on
their way to dying out before the
advent of the white man, but with-
in comparatively recent times the
southwestern Indians have exerted
an effort to come back. Mr. Hewett
decries the efforts to check this
renaissance of Indian culture, and
the constant and pernicious efforts
to "civilize" the people.
On the whole the analysis of the
southwestern culture has been ade-
quately done, but there is a slight
tendency for Mr. Hewett to.regard
the territory as a culture center en-
tirely, and he fails to stress the dif-
fusion from the centers of Ameri-
can aboriginal civilization in Mid-
dle America. The very house type
of the Pueblo is tied up with the
more central cultures, as are many
of the religious and social activi-
ties. But after all, the south es
is a secondary center.
Dr. Hewett's work has not been
confined to the Pueblo territory,
but has in the past done extensive
research in archeology in the Aztec
areas of Mexico. and among the
Maya ruins of Yucatan and Gua-
temala.

United States of America; whether it will take the form of a1
a common hostile tariff against our trade, or represent a

boycott
combine

and
of

There once was a time in the his-'
tory of literature when it was con-
sidered bad art and bad taste to
make a hero of a character who
had none of the enobling virtues,
and from whom it was impossible
to point a moral. It was thought
that some trait in the character
which the reader possessed (pat-
riotism, etc.), was the only way in
which the reader could construct
a bridge to the character and re-
ceive the message. And there is
nothing admitting the major pre-
mise (vicarious experience in the
life of a character as a basis for
the aesthetic emotions) that is
more logical.
By this token. Nothin; to Pay
shouldhbefa bad novel. Since it is
not, the fact must be that a novel
should be something more than
mere vicarious and selfish exper-
ience. Caradoc Evans has written
something which is an expression
of a philosophy which is more and
more taking hold today. I, is true
that it is a pragmatic philosophy
and negates the old philosophic
contexts of speculation. It placesI
each human in an universal pers-
pective and we can no longer say
"why?" Innocently, but with a
power which cannot be denied, we
see Amos Morgan, tie hero, de-
veloping into the rich mean m r
that he is. He cannot change but
as his people and his wor'd chnge.
He is a symbol and yet a dliiitj
character.
It seems to be the impression a-
mong reviewers of this b ok, that;
Evans was solely inturestea in re-
vealing the evilness of his native
Wales. On the contrary, his work
is not one of propaganda but has
consistent artistic integri-y. S. S. F.
IFregt, ervice

impoverished, debtor nations to oppose our demand for debt repay-
ments. The answer to this is both yes and no. Europe is being forced
to league together partly because of the competition provided by the
productivity of the United States with its vast resources unhampered
by internal frontiers and customs barriers; but this movement is de-
fensive rather than hostile. "A European federation is not to be thought
of as being aimed against the United States" (p. 15). Really it is a
case of imitation, the sincerest form of flattery. Disunited Europe being
unable to achieve the high standard of living reached by united America'
is desirous of following our example. A bow is in order.
The author has frequently touched on but not, in the reviewer's
opinion, completely answered the greatest objection to the United States
of Europe. That is, can we speak of "Europe" at all except in a purely'
geographical sense? Where does the British Empire come into the pic-
ture, with Great Britain at once a European Kingdom and a world
empire covering a quarter of this globe? And how soon will Soviet
Russia he ready to co-operate even economically with "capitalist"
Europe? Yet would Europe be complete without either Britain or Rus-
sia? And does not "Europe" in the political sense include most Qf
Africa, which is nearly all divided into European colonies, to make no
mention of colonies in other continents? The old recipe for cooking
rabbit began "First catch your rabbit." Must we not decide what Europe
is before we make her a constitution?

i

ill

sgei

Mc 'gan's Favorite College Songs

$4.75

Michigan's Book Ends ............ ...$2.00, $2.50, $3.00, $5.00 $7.50
M chg-n's Memory Books ... . ....1.75, $3.50, $4,50, 6.50

Axel Munthe.
N by E, by Rockwell Kent.
SECOND TWENTY YEARS AT
HULL HOUSE, by Jane Adams.
CASE FOR INDIA, by Will
Durant.
HUMANITY UPROOTED, by
Maurice Hindus.
UNiVERSITIES, by Abrahamn
[Flexncr.
ASH-WEDNESDAY, by T. S.
Eliot
LITTLE AMERICA, by Com-
mander Richard Fvelyn Byrd.
FICTION
THE VIRGIN A NDTHE GYP-
SY, by D. . LI. o w 'enei.
ONy F Yi CHANGE, by
John Gahwor h.y
RUDOLPH AND) ANINA, by
Cli> upher lordey,
MODY DICK, by Herman Mel-
ville (i.ockwe 1ent Edition.)
PHILLIPA, by Ann Douglas
Sedgewick.
DEEPENING S T R E A M, by
Dorothy Canfield.
ANGEL PAVEMENT, by J. B.
Briestisy,.
CAKES AND ALE, by Somerset
Maugham.
24 HOUIRS, by Louis Bromfield.
MAD MAN'S DRUM, by Lynn
'Wird

century inclusions are questionable.1
G. E. Woodberry is granted space
for his "Man and the Race" which1
expresses with no particular exac-f
titude general views, more brilliant-
ly stated and illustrated by their
originator, Taine, in any chapter
say of his History of English Lit-
erature. Babbitt and More are rep-
resented by two of their best es-l
says; and Prosser Hall Frye's finei
essay on "The Idea of a Greek
Tragedy" is happily included.,
But the inclusion of J. E. Spin-
garn's wild plea for Croce, "The
New Criticism" (the essay in which
occurs that hilarious list of "what
we new have done with": the old
rules, the genres, the theory of
style, Al r ,al judgments, race,
time and environment, all evolu-
tion of Lerature: all because we
now know that literature is "ex-
pression") could only have beenj
prompted by a too conscientious
historical viewpoint. Then from
the earlier esys of Stuart Sher-
man, Foerster chooses the one on
"Mark Twain" which most nearly
forebodes his later degraded think-<
ing. And finally the omission of an
essay from eihe "The Sacred l
Wood" or Image to John Dry-
den" (unless Foerster considers T.
S. Eliot an Englishman) is unfor-
givable.

Michigan's Blankets .......... .

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Michigan's Jewelry, Paper Cutters, etc., etc.
h i *vr ty
a a eB'6'katore
316 State Street Main Street Opp. Court House
OPEN EVENINGS UNTIL CHRISTMAS

111

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YPSILANTI
Trucks daily
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Pick-up and Delivery
Service.
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CARTAGE CO.
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Phone 4299g

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you geta fED AR R OW dollar back"
ARE

W. J. G.?
SPE CIA L T RAINS
account
CHRISTMAS VACATION
Friday, December 19th
SOUTH O'UN : eavc Ann Armor11 :00a m. (Centr 'lT6 a(:) ! v olo1:15
p. in. (Eastern Time), making all Toledo connctk: s
NORTHBOUND: Leave AnnArbor 5:15 p. i. (Central Time) arr'ing n) ,, 645
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Toledo 4:55 p. m. (Eastern Time) connecting with aci lines diverging.
Special Train Service from Toledo
RETURNING TANUARY 4. 1931,

TR A D M A R
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j. B. Eibler, Jeweler
Hutzel & Co., Plumbing and Heating

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George J. Me Sport Shops
Ann Arbor Implement Co.

111

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