(1) Sociological Papers (2) Heredity and Selection in Sociology

Abstract

(1) THIS volume is quite equal in interest to either of its predecessors. Among the papers which it comprises, those contributed by Dr. Archdall Reid and Mr. A. E. Crawley are of preeminent interest, owing partly to the merit of the papers themselves, partly to the discussions which followed, and the written-communications elicited from English and foreign Dr. Reid took as his subject “The Biologiem Foundations of Sociology.” The present evolution of civilised man is, he maintained, mainly against disease. Intellectual power in a nation depends almost entirely upon the environment of the individuals that make up the nation—in fact, upon education. Education ought to make the pupil think instead of overtaxing his memory. In particular, medical students should study heredity. Until doctors as a body are masters of what is known on this subject, the medical profession will never occupy the place that properly belongs to it. Dr. Reid's statement of his case was at once trenchant and guarded, and the criticisms fell mostly wide of the mark. But is there not, in addition to the evolution against disease on which he lays so much strees, a moral evolution going on? There is everywhere a great demand for honest men. Steadiness and trustworthiness are the qualities which modern civilisation most requires. In the lowest stratum of society, from which the casual labourers mainly come, such things are perhaps not important enough to have survival value. But in all the strata above the very lowest the qualities of steadiness and trustworthiness are those which pay, are those which enable a man to bring up a family; and men and women who are deficient in them sink lower or are eliminated altogether. Dr. J. L. Tayler's paper on the study of individuals (individuology) and their natural groupings (sociology) is to some extent an answer to Dr. Reid's. Instead of finding· in disease an influence which strengthens the race, he holds that slums favour barbaric types, whereas with higher social conditions, while diseases testing physical endurance are destroyed by hygienic developments, others arise that test mental tenacity and strength.

(1) Sociological Papers.

Vol. iii. (1906). Published for the Sociological Society. Pp. xi + 382. (London: Macmillan and Co., Ltd., 1907.) Price 10s. 6d. net.

(2) Heredity and Selection in Sociology.

By G. Chatterton-Hill. Pp. xxxii + 571. (London: Adam and Charles Black, 1907.) Price 12s. 6d. net.

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