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THE CONTRIBUTORS' COLUMN

THE advertising psychology of the newspapers is a peculiar thing. They will mutilate a news story to avoid a specific mention of advertised goods and on the same page present millions in publicity to another industry. The distinction between news and publicity is one which editors face daily, but which few or none can decide. Remember the space given to the Dodge stock, Valentino, and the Prize Fight and see what Earnest Elmo Calkins, a pioneer in advertising, has to say. In the next war there will be no civilians; women and children and doughboys, let us educate them now so that they will know poison gas and high explosives when they meet them. A Progressive Militarist displays the full courage of his conviction.

In reading Carl Christian Jensen's account of his American marriage, remember that he was a twenty-year-old Dane, working as an electrician's apprentice, educating himself in English and science at night school, and earning and living on six dollars a week. Rudolph Fisher, one of the younger Negro writers, graduated with honors from Brown University and is now practising as an X-ray specialist in New York City. President of St. Stephen's College, Annandale-on-Hudson, Bernard Iddings Bell stands us up against our ancestors and literally shames us into high thinking.

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Amory Hare is a poet of whom we and Philadelphians have had occasions to be proud. ¶Adventuring through I. A. Richards's dizzy paper, we paused to catch our breath and wonder why it is so few Americans follow this sport at home. Lord Dunsany, the eighteenth baron of that title, is almost equally devoted to play title, is almost equally devoted to play writing, prose, and the hunt. John Barker Waite gave up an experienced practice in order to become professor of law at the University of Michigan. In a series of articles of which this is the third, Professor

Waite has sought to divide the blame among those who are responsible for the present failure of our law enforcement. ¶Author and professor of psychology at Bryn Mawr, James H. Leuba spent last summer in Holland attending the International Congress of Psychology. ¶In her more serious moments Ellen N. La Motte is an authority on the opium problem. Her present narrative was written in old Westminster, not far from the Abbey. True to tradition, Alice Brown, poet and novelist, follows the seasons from Beacon Hill to Newburyport and return. The Ruskin letters, the first installment of which we printed in the Atlantic for December, were originally written to Miss Jessie Leete, an English teacher whose death occurred shortly before this correspondence was delivered to Mr. Leonard Huxley. We are very glad to print these delightful letters in connection with the Cornhill Magazine. ¶As an employment manager on Wall Street and 'Up-State,' Anne W. Armstrong came into contact with business policies admirable and otherwise. Her earlier experiences on Wall Street appeared in the Atlantic for August 1925.

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reading your article in the November Atlantic. Still I feel that your collection of testimonials will be incomplete if I do not add my small contribution.

Would it surprise you if I were to tell you that within the last eighty-two years three men have given evidence of their prophethood in connection with one religious movement? The first man, the Forerunner, was shot at a public execution; the second man, the Prophet, was incarcerated for life in a pestilential prison; when the third man, the appointed interpreter of the teachings, was released from the prison after forty-two years of confinement, he traveled through the cities of Europe and the United States founding groups of followers recruited from every race. Each of these prophets has written numerous books expounding the tenets of this belief, which have been translated into many tongues. It is estimated that this religion has had three million adherents.

I myself and my family belong to one of the many groups of American believers. Were you to look in on one of our biweekly meetings in which we study the teachings of our Prophet, you would make the acquaintance of two scientists from a State Agriculturalist Station an Italian and his wife born Roman Catholics, a farmer (my husband) who began life as a college instructor in geology, a doctor and his wife, the registrar from the local college, and two onetime high-school teachers of whom I am one. About half of us had no religious belief up to the time we came in contact with these teachings, the others were ardent Christians; now we believe in Buddha, Confucius, Moses, Christ, and Mohammed, and One Other who has taught the underlying verity back of all religion.

Will you allow me to answer a few of the questions so vividly put forth in your article?

1. The world needs a prophet since it is no longer influenced by the spirit of Christ. Because this is so, self-love has become a more prevalent motive than the love of God.

2. It needs a spiritual leader who will furnish inspiration sufficient to carry into effect his teachings; who will give explicit directions as to what should be done; his message should be universal, with a view to uniting the peoples of the world.

3. History shows that the world in general will not recognize him when he comes. Fortunately the influence of a prophet does not die with him on the cross. The Idea which he brings lives after him and exercises a subtle influence upon the life of the world.

4. What is a prophet anyhow? A prophet is an inspired teacher and leader who introduces a new spiritual cycle. He reiterates the universal and eternal teachings of the earlier prophets and

reorganizes the world to fit the exigences of the day in which he manifests. Christ, when accused by the theological sticklers of his day of being anti-Moses, said, 'I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.' He set aside the obsolete part of Moses' teachings, but renewed the eternal Truth which has to do with man's spiritual growth.

A word about the mechanics of present-day prophethood. What are the means by which the shepherd may collect his sheep? It is more systematized than in the old days. First the Forerunner announced the coming of the Prophet and collected a nucleus of prepared believers. At the appointed time the Prophet declared himself, increasing his followers by thousands and promulgating certain principles. He was exiled and imprisoned; but, unhampered by these obstacles, during his long life there he wrote over a hundred books, in which he detailed the spiritual and practical arrangements for the world for another cycle of time. When he died he appointed his son to be the Centre of the Covenant and to be the Interpreter and Promulgator of his Message. This man in turn, who himself manifested the characteristics of a world teacher, arranged in his will for a succession of Guardians to protect the purity of the original teaching and to carry on the complicated executive work of the system. The affairs of the movement are handled in each of the different countries by a committee of nine outstanding men, and the world is becoming honeycombed by local groups who by representative government are united with the central plan of action. This religious system, although still in its infancy, has an organized corps of workers many thousand strong who are striving through their lives and teaching to spread the tenets of their belief throughout the world.

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Claiming the privilege of a regular subscriber, dear to the heart of every publisher, I am venturing to suggest to you a symposium that would interest thousands of your readers, on the 'Repair and Upkeep of Athletic Daughters.'

How are we parents to adjust ourselves to the new type of offspring growing up in our homes? Stimulated by gymnasium instructors and coaches in preparatory schools and colleges, these daughters of ours are becoming so large and strong, physically, that they have grown beyond the capacity of the furniture of our ancestors. The antique beds and chairs that served our pioneering forbears are not only too frail to accommodate these daughters, but the beds are too short

and the chairs too low and narrow, and they splinter, crack, and collapse and must be replaced by larger and more strongly made furniture. We have several antique beds that have been in the family for generations that these modern athletes can use only by lying across diagonally.

The other day I noticed that the shelves of a bookcase in the room of a thirteen-year-old daughter had fallen to the top of the books below, and upon examination I found that the child, wishing to move the bookcase, had taken hold of one side and split the back panel its entire length, and had pulled the side entirely away from the case.

Yesterday I paid for two pairs of shin guards for my daughters, and I tried to visualize my mother or my grandmother, or even my greatgrandmother wearing such decorations, and yet they were all stalwart women of the pioneer type. Hardly a day passes but some daughter comes home with a sprained ankle or a wrenched arm, and must go through the long list of specialists for repairs. (Splints, bandages, and an occasional plaster cast are often in evidence after a well-fought hockey or basketball game.) There should be some provision made in the Federal Income Tax Law, permitting parents to write off depreciation on damaged children.

We have rather a frail French governess to whom the children are devoted, but the love taps she receives from these well-intentioned youngsters have shattered her health. An affectionate thump on the shoulder, is apt to send her reeling.

These athletic activities necessitate clothing so nearly resembling masculine attire that my pipe remains about the only article I possess that our daughters do not appropriate. My neckties, collars, pajamas, golf stockings, and riding togs are all drawn on when occasion requires.

I have often wondered if the Venus de Milo was not a faithful portrait of the remains of some athletic Greek girl returning from an intercollegiate match with the cheers of victory ringing in her ears.

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these words must be written whether I will or no. When I realized that the crisis had come in the desperate illness of one whose life was dearer to me than my own, I felt as if I had been training all my life to meet it. I was told by the doctors that the ensuing three hours would be the turning point; that absolute silence was necessary, and that it would be best for everyone to leave the room except the nurse. My reply was, 'Ever since C- was a little child, when facing difficult things, she always said, "Mother, think for me." This is her greatest need and I must stay.' There was immediate acquiescence on the part of the two doctors.

I sat down, away from the bed, behind a screen placed there to secure protection to the patient. I had no definite thought in my mind, but my whole being concentrated on the one I loved.

As I sat thus, hearing only the more and more difficult breathing, I gradually became aware of forces; powerful forces, generating around us in the room.

I soon became aware of currents, or, to be more exact, of wide waves of white light flowing in from the eastern windows. I felt these waves being augmented from the hills surrounding the valley and rising to the house which stood upon one of the ridges. I knew the light to be flowing in and around and over the bed.

Again and again, continuously as the hours passed, I felt myself able to direct the light, as one would a powerful electric current or a searchlight, up and down the body of the patient, pausing to concentrate with overwhelming force upon the lungs, which were the seat of the infection.

Slowly, slowly but surely, as I sat passively with eyes closed, I seemed to see the white light shaping a marked space over the bed, which increased and pushed back inch by inch a heavy blackness. As time passed, the white space grew larger and more aggressive, and gradually spread and spread until there were only fringes of blackness at the outer edges of the room. Then they too were gone and all the room seemed clear and light in spite of the shaded windows.

I rose after my four-hour vigil, left the room, and walked across the wide hall as if on air. Far from being fatigued, I felt a sense of rejuvenation and well-being. I had not been aware of the nurse. I felt no desire to ask about the temperature or any of the physical conditions. I knew that all was well.

I can prove nothing. The doctors rightly and naturally felt that their judgment and skill, the coöperation of the faithful and efficient nurses, the wonderful constitution of the patient herself, accounted for the turning of the scales. I cannot but agree that all this counted greatly, but I still believe that something beyond all this

counted more. I cannot explain. I can only write down faithfully as it happened this most vivid experience of my life.

In varying and lesser degrees, before, I have felt myself the channel of this marvelous healing force. Once twenty years ago, when I sat many hours at the bedside of my dear father and felt dimly that my fervent hope helped to draw him back from the threshold. Again, some years ago, when for eighteen hours I did not leave a beloved one, a strong bond woven by destiny between us, as well as a sense of light, seemed to hold him to life against powerful but unavailing forces.

To the few who may have had the patience to read this far, and have decided that I am a visionary or a lunatic who ought to be restrained, I would like to say that I run two homes for my husband, who seems to approve of my stewardship; I paint and sing and generally enjoy life with him and our child and family and friends; and I also earn a salary in a vital and splendid business.

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I have read 'Home-making and Careers' by Louis I. Dublin, published in your September issue. He says, 'Such evidence as we have concerning early marriage does not indicate any real hazard, but rather real gain for all concerned.

Those teachers who would marry should be encouraged to do so and should by this fact not forfeit their position or standing in the community.' This and more of like nature that Mr. Dublin says is nothing but a fine ideal to lead astray the unwary. For, as beautiful as the idea is in theory, so wretchedly abominable is it in practice! Oh! am only I unfortunate?

After teaching one year, I married and now have a four-year-old daughter. My husband is a mechanical engineer whose income is $2500. After deducting a reasonable amount for necessary life insurance what father dares to remain uninsured? - and paying a cruelly disproportionate amount for shelter even in a mediocre locality, barely enough remains for food and such clothing as cannot be remodeled out of the time-honored trousseau. As for a margin to be devoted to cultural pursuits, there is none that for people whose standards of living have been moulded by a college education! Where, pray, where is the real gain in this early marriage?

In order to ensure ourselves and our daughter some latitude for the enjoyment of music, art, and travel, I have for two years been trying to get back to teaching. Invariably I have met with the same reply: 'In the face of tens of applicants for this position, we can easily secure

someone with more experience, also someone who can give her whole attention to teaching.' Why, pray, why should teachers be encouraged to marry early, if to marry at all?

What matters it if their hearts are breaking with yearning and longing for the fine things in life? All that matters is that college women marry and rear a half-dozen imaginative children to the glory of the race. As for marrying and teaching too, society as we find it makes that generally impossible. What of the new teachers that yearly arrive upon the scene in proportionally larger numbers?

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A. R. B.

These postscripts to the discussion of divorce, initiated by Bishop Fiske, must conclude a debate which, through the responsive interest of our readers, we could indefinitely prolong.

NEW YORK CITY

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DEAR ATLANTIC, In his article entitled 'Marriage Temporary or Permanent?' in your September issue, Bishop Charles Fiske says: 'In six states a girl of twelve may marry, with the parents' consent; in one state she may do so without such consent.'

May I call your attention to the fact that the conditions are more than twice as remarkable as Bishop Fiske has reported? There are at present thirteen states which allow the marriage of a girl of twelve years, either by statute or by virtue of the fact that the common law ages remain in those states unchanged. The thirteen are: Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, and Virginia Until this year New York was also in this class.

The general legal doctrine is that the marriage of a person of the age of consent is valid regardless of parental consent, though in a few cases annulment may be granted for the absence thereof. It is even probable that in some states the marriage of a child of seven years, the old ecclesiastical law age for absolute nullity, would be valid until annulled at the suit of one of the parties.

GEOFFREY MAY

Observations of an Old Maid

Evidently unhappy marriages are not confined to the present age. The Dean of St. Patrick's wrote, back in the seventeenth century:

"The reason why so few marriages are happy is because young ladies spend their time in making nets, not in making cages.'

A cage might be useful at times, but give me a good, strong net! M. E.

FEBRUARY, 1927

THE STUMP FARM

A CHRONICLE OF PIONEERING

BY HILDA ROSE

[THE author of these valiant letters was once a young and ardent school-teacher in Illinois; but tuberculosis sent her to the highlands of the West, where, after five busy and health-giving years of tent life, she married a man much older than herself and, as a farmer's wife on a stump farm, gallantly shouldered his burdens and her own. Followed years of hardship and intellectual dearth, until at last, one bitter winter, she ‘had the courage' to write to the Chicago Tribune for something to read-'the books that nobody cared for any more.' Her modest appeal brought her friends as well as books, and the letters which we print were written to those friends. That they were ever to be printed was farthest from her thought. THE EDITORS]

June 21, 1919

We are friends now, so we won't stand on ceremony. At last! At last! I am going to have friends who will be glad to see me when I go back to the world for a visit or to stay. Time will tell, but I presume that it will be when I am old and gray.

I can see one farmhouse from here, but it's about a mile off and the

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inmates are impossible. The nearest 'shack,' about as big as a henhouse, on the east, is inhabited by a crippled grandmother and her son. I tramp through the woods to see her once in a while. She is very poor and ignorant, but I like her, and she treats me like an equal.

On the west I am bounded by the woods, and also on the north. So there is n't much to see, as we live in a depression, or small valley, on this shelf or bench. I can't go anywhere very often, though I do get out for at least one picnic every summer, given by the Farmers' Union. I belong to it, but I have to go alone, as Daddy is so old he does n't like to go anywhere any more. So whenever I can, I take the boy and go. But it's the winters that are trying. That is why I had to have something to read, or go crazy.

You don't know how anxiously I look in the glass as the years go by, and wonder if I'll ever get to look like the rest of the natives here. You have seen overworked farmers' wives, with weather-wrung and sorrow-beaten faces, drooping mouths, and a sad look.

I want to go back, I don't care where, and have friends once more. I must

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