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THE BOOK TABLE: DEVOTED TO BOOKS AND THEIR MAKERS OF MAGIC CASEMENTS
guage.” What distinguishes the poet from
his fellow-men, he proceeds, is not the BY LLOYD R. MORRIS
peculiar nature of the images which inHE capacity for sharing vividly in the wide sense, and more particularly to
spire the poem, but the increasingly verbal
form of these images as they are reshaped poetic experience is a part of the the criticism of the romantic
revival, which cultivated feeling rather than thought, and
by the poet's imagination, and in the Lost of us perhaps would like to believe refused to admit that reason itself was
rhythmical or metrical character of their hat we have preserved it unblemished capable of arousing the emotions. To the
final expression. Poetry, Professor Erskine gainst the challenge of the recurring years, classical scholar, who admits Aristotle or
tells us in the exquisite and penetrating few would be willing to confess a spiritual Herodotus to the canon of literature as
essay which gives its title to his book, is an
invariable function of life. " terility so devastatingly complete as to freely as he does Homer or Euripides, and
Ordinarily," Reprive them of the ability to recapture
he says, "the emotions aroused by experi, to the French scholar, who reads as literahat magical insight which is an effect of ture Descartes or Voltaire or Rousseau,
ence are used up in the further process of beauty and which lies at the heart of the antithetical opposition of reason and living. The poet differs from his fellows poetic experience. But to many that expe- emotion in our common definition of litera
only in the greater power of his emotions, ience lacks, with the passing years, some- ture might well seem strange.
in the greater imperativeness of his intuihing of the exquisite glamour with which Even if we agree that we may
tions, whereby it is easier for him to ex
upon t first revealed itself, and they are prone
them in words than to consume them both history and philosophy for our greater
in life. The stimulus that enters the poet's co attribute to a fancied impermanence of understanding of poetry, we may well in
. beauty that which is rather the result of a quire into the character of their special
nature and comes out as epical or dramatic
or lyrical expression, enters equally the neglect to cultivate those attitudes which nake for insight.
nature of ordinary man and is consumed
in lyrical or epic or dramatic living. If our approach to poetry is colored by a not unnatural discouragement, we may
A poet's temperament prescribes into which
of the three genres his work shall fall ; none the less take heart. At some moment
and similarly the temperament of average of the past a brilliant interpreter or inspired teacher unlocked the magic case
men prescribes whether they shall live in
the present, or in the past, or in the ment and made us free of the larger world
future.” The qualities of poetry which we of beauty. If the power of his insight alone so greatly stimulated our receptivity
term lyrical, dramatic, or epic, he con
tinues, are as fundamental as the three to beauty, it is probable that some knowledge of his methods will go far toward
apprehensions of life which they imply
as simply a present moment, or as a enabling us to recapture those moods of ahe spirit in which the world of the im
present moment in which the past is
reaped, or as a present moment in which agination first exercised its dominion over
the future is promised.” us. What is the discipline which fosters
The two theories of poetry thus briefly such insights? The question is answered
indicated serve in a measure to differentiby one who is himself both poet and interpreter of poetry.
ate the attitudes toward poetry of the two In a charming essay on “ The Teaching
critics. Professor Perry is an advocate of
what he has termed the genetic method in of Poetry” in his recent volume, Professor Erskine remarks that it is the function of
criticism ; Professor Erskine, if we do not
misread him, conceives poetry as a domain Ehe teacher—and he might well have added, of the critic also—“ to afford a mediation
of human experience, a “function of life,” between great poets and their audience,
and he would interpret it in terms of itself
rather than in terms of its language, but - .. to supply the information, the background, whatever is lacking to make the
in the light of whatever wisdom intellireader at home with the book.” In order
gence has formulated out of its contact to supply this background the teacher or
contributions. History, Professor Erskine with experience. And the difference in
tells us, will make us contemporary with a the critic must draw upon both history
attitude, in what may be termed the phiand philosophy, must include in his defi- poem, but, once contemporary, the problems losophy of these two critics, determines nition of literature the literature of reason
of appreciation and interpretation remain ; very largely the character of the contribuas well as the literature of emotion. In
a mere knowledge of facts, however com- tion to our recovery of poetic experience other words, if we are to recover poetic
prehensive, will not solve them. How shall made by their books. Professor Perry, as experience, we must have some control
we proceed? “ To criticise a poem written we may imagine, is interested chiefly in over the facts and over the ideas which
yesterday or this morning one needs not a analyzing the “strange potencies of verse, Elave contributed to the inspiration of po
record but a theory of life. We pass judg- in its capacity to produce certain effects etry. As Professor Erskine points out, this
ment immediately on our neighbor's ac- upon the mind of the reader, and, more control is an instrument which we rarely
tions, on his thoughts or emotions, without particularly, in the method by which these enough possess. “We talk,” he says, “ of
going into his biography. . . . Poetry, a effects are produced. Professor Erskine, the ideas of evolution in In Memoriam,'
reflection of action or thought or feeling, is himself a poet, is vitally interested in the but we ignore those predecessors of Darwin
judged in no other way. The equipment of same questions as is Profesor Perry, but whom Tennyson studied, and Darwin him
the best teachers of literature is principally he is likewise concerned with poetry as a self, of course, we do not read. If it be this, that by experience or study they have means of apprehending, or, if you will, of urged that he did not write with felicity,
arrived at a coherent philosophy of life, interpreting, life. and therefore deserves to be counted out
and have therefore an instrument with In one thing, though perhaps they might of literature, what shall be said of Hobbes
which to take hold of new emotions and vigorously disagree with this statement, and Locke, of Berkeley and Hume, or how
new thoughts. It makes little difference the two critics are in decided agreement. Shall we dispose of such an historian as
what our philosophy is, so long as it is And the element common to their critical Gibbon?” The romantic definition which
sincere and thorough; of course the more equipment is that of method. Professor excludes from literature those books which
it explains of life and letters, the better it Erskine suggests his method of cultivating alo not essentially possess an emotional
is, but the desirable thing is to have some insight in his essay on “The Teaching of content is peculiar to English criticism, in philosophy."
Poetry," and gives us an example of its But what, after all, is poetry? We have application in another on
- The New The Kinds of Poetry and Other Essays. By
two definitions offered. “The field of Poetry.”. Professor Perry applies the John Erskine, Professor of English, Columbia poetry," says Professor Perry in his stim- method in his closely packed “ Study of University. Duffield & Co., New York.
ulating study, “is that portion of human Poetry,” interpreting the æsthetic as well A Study of Poetry. By 'Bliss Perry, Professor of English Literature Harvard University.
feeling which expresses itself through as the experiential background of poetry Hloughton Mifflin Company, Boston.
rhythmical and preferably metrical lan- in the light of his wide reading of litera
(C) Underwood & Underwood
ture, of science, and of philosophy. He gives an unusually clear analysis, supported by rich and apt quotation, of the effects of poetry upon the reader, and in the second part of his book he discusses with equal felicity a special type of poemthe lyric. The value of his essay lies in its vivid ability to provide us with those moments of lucid understanding in which poetic experience is restored to us. And it is to our additional advantage that Professor. Perry has the true critic's facility in making apparent to us not only what it is in poetry which moves us profoundly, but why we are profoundly moved.
Here, then, are two books in which the lover of poetry will rejoice, for they hold the key to those magic casements of which Keats wrote and which open upon
that world of beauty that is poetry. In tlte last analysis we sliall find in poetry only what we bring to it; the ripeness of our wisdom, the depth of our spiritual capacity, and the power of our reading of human experience are only so many instruments with which we may take hold of those experiences and ideas which have been its inspiration. And those books which provide the fortunate moments of spiritual apprehension which send us back to poetic experience with a more profound capacity are surely to be commended.
such stories, lead the reader in wrong
G. P. Putnam's Sons, New York.
This story by the author of “The
Rising. The George H. Doran Company, New
THE NEW BOOKS
of the Canadian Mounted Police, who bez lieves himself at the point of deatlı, confesses to a murder which he never committed in order to save a man whom be supposes to be guilty but who is really innocent, only to find that the doctor las made a mistake, and that the sergeant's greatest danger of death is that of being hanged, is certainly arresting and peculiar. Wilderness Mine (The). By Harold Bindloss,
The Frederick A. Stokes Company, New York, Wherever Mr. Bindloss begins one of his stories, they are pretty sure to more sooner or later to a Canadian lumber camp or mine. In this case one wishes it hail been sooner, for the Canadian part of the book is much the best.
BOOKS FOR YOUNG FOLKS Hidden People (The). By Leo E. Miller.
Illustrated. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. The author is well known as a naturalist and explorer of South American countries. This tale is about two American college boys wrecked on the coast of South America. It is described as a boys' novel, but it is the kind of book that will appeal to all lovers of adventure.
ESSAYS AND CRITICISM Personal Prejudices. By Mrs. R. Clipstop
Sturgis. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. Decidedly entertaining little chapters, these, that seem like the talk of a clever woman dictaphoned. People who like to listen to such a talker will find this book most enjoyable.
TRAVEL AND DESCRIPTION Westward with the Prince of Wales. By
W. Douglas Newton. D. Appleton & Co.,
The Macmillan Company, New York.
These letters home from a Y. M. C. A. .worker in France are made vivid by a natural descriptive touch, by an ever-present sense of humor, and by an admirable spirit. They are all the better for having been written informally and without idea of publication. The author had the opportunity of seeing the front, and later the occupied German zone at many points. Her impressions of Paris, Aix-les-Bains, Coblenz, and other places are full of human interest; there are very many pictures of soldier life, incidents thrilling and amusing, bits of character sketching The reader gets an intimate, near-by view of the American boys in khaki. Letterwriting is a gift, and the secret is usually in being simple, direct, and unaffected these letters exactly fit that description.
Teall. Illustrated. The Century Company,
This book will interest people who aspire to become collectors rather than those who have already become specialists in any one line. It covers a multitude of fascinating hobbies in short chapters freely and attractively illustrated. Any one who harbors even the germ of the collecting habit will find it developing in the glowing atmosphere of the author's enthusiasm.
Cape Currey. By Rene Juta. Henry Holt &
Co., New York. Stories of secret gardens are always fascinating. This is also a story of Cape Colony more than a hundred years ago, of the British rule there, of a certain odd and whimsical doctor, and, as a matter of course, of love and adventure. Come Seven. By Octavus Roy Cohen. Dodd,
Mead & Co., New York. No one, at least for a long time, has written such rollicking and orginal stories of Negro life as these by Mr. Cohen. They
Courtesy of Houghton Mifflin Co. approach the burlesque in their fun, but they never fail to amuse. The titles of the separate stories are ingeniously phrased. night with her mother at an inn in a To our liking, “The Quicker the Dead” is
remote Spanish district. What makes the the best.
mystery remarkable is that, not only does
the giri disappear, but the room in which Flemish Legends. By Charles de Coster. Illustrated. Translated from the French by
she slept, with its furniture, hangings, and Harold Taylor. The Frederick A. Stokes
the like, disappears also, so that in the Company, New York.
morning the mother is neither able to find These strange Middle-Age legends were her daughter nor to find anything like the gather by de Coster during the last cen- room in which she left her the night before. tury from the folklore of Brabant and In other
is original, but its Flanders. They are Rabelaisian in form literary quality is not particularly good. but without the coarseness and rollicking Top o' the Morning. By Seumas MacManus. humor of the great French satirist. There
The Frederick A. Stokes Company, New
York. is much of somber beauty in the stories, but also much of the blood-lust of the period.
The author has again given us a volume
of short stories and character sketches of In the Onyx Lobby. By Carolyn Wells. The George H. Doran Company, New York.
Irish life and people that abound in raciThe singular accident by wliich the de
ness, true fancy, and thorough knowledge
of Irish character and dialect. One of tectives and the readers are put on the
these stories, we remember with pleasure, wrong track almost to the end of the book is cleverly invented. Otherwise we cannot
first appeared in The Outlook. In these
days of disturbance and tragedy in Ireland rank the book very highly in the con
it is restful to turn to such tales of genuine stantly multiplying number of books of this class.
humor and large-hearted human nature.
Valley of Silent Men (The). By James Oliver “No Clue !" By James Hay, Jr. Dodd, Mead Curwood. Illustrated. Cosmopolitan Book & Co., New York.
Corporation, New York. A cleverly constructed detective story, Mr. Curwood's story of the great Canabut one with very little genuine human in- dian north is well written, but is almost terest. The title is singularly inappro- too tense, too somber, and sometimes too priate, for there are only too many clues, trying in its horror to be a pleasant book. all of which, as is the wont of writers of The opening situation, in which a sergeant
WATCH YOUR NERVES
By PAUL VON BOECKMANN
Lecturer and Author of numerous books and treatises on Mental and Physical
Energy, Respiration, Psychology, Sexual Science and Nerve Culture
The high pressure, mile-a-minute life of to-day, vith its mental strain, worry, anxiety, grief and roub'e is WRECKING THE NERVES of mankind. his applies especially to people with highly active rains and sensitive nerves. Have your Nerves ood the strain ? The symptoms of nerve exhaustion vary according to ndividual characteristics, but the development is usually s follows:
First Stage : Lack of energy and endurance: that “tired feeling."
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Third Stage: Serious mental disturbance ; fear; undue - worry; melancholia ; dangerous organic disturbances; suicidal tendencies; and in extreme cases, insanity.
If only a few of the symptoms menioned apply to you, especially those njicating mental turmoil, you may be ure your nerves are at fault that you have exhausted your Nerve Force. t is positive your nerves are at fault,
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I ask YOU, how can we reason otherwise? Is not the Nervous System the great governing force of the body, the force that gives Life and Power to every organ, every muscle and cell? When the Nervous Forces are depleted through strain, how can the vital organs, muscles and other tissues retain their power? It is impossible.
The power of nerves is infinitely great for good or evil. So great is this power that a tremendous nerve strain, as for instance, intense fear or anger, may cause instant death through bursting of a blood vessel. A less intense nerve shock will cause the cheeks to pale or
become flushed with blood. It can make the heart beat wildly and paralyze breathing. It can make cold sweat break out over the body, and make the knees tremble and become weak. It can paralyze the digestive powers in an instant. Long extended nerve strains of even mild intensity will undermine the mind and body of the strongest man and woman that ever lived.
Nerve Force is a dangerous power when uncontrolled, and if controlled, it can be made to give us Strength, Health, Character, Personality, Success and Happiness. It is
the greatest force of all bodily forces. My life's work consists in teaching how to control the nerves and attain through them all that life can give.
You should read my book on this subject entitled Nerve Force. If you do not agree that it is the most instructive book you have ever read, return it and your money will be refunded plus your outlay of postage. The cost, prepaid, is 25 cents. Bound in cloth, with gold finish, 50 cents (coin or stamps preferred). I have advertised my books and courses of instruction in this and other magazines for more than 20 years, which is ample guarantee of my responsibility and integrity.
I am a Nerve Specialist and Psycho-Analyst, besides eing generally experienced in every Science pertaining o the Body and Mind. I have treated more cases of Nerves
than any other man in the world. I pecialize in this treatment only. My instruction is given by mail. Positively no fee is charged for a “ Preliminary
* Diagnosis " of your case, and you will be under no obligation to take my course, if you write me. Do not explain your case in your first letter, as I shall send you special instructions how to report your case and how to make certain “nerve tests,” used generally by Nerve Specialists, and I shall send you FREE, other important lata on Nerve Culture, which will give you an understanding of your nerves you had never had before.
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PAUL VON BOECKMANN
110 West 40th Street, Studio 338, New York, N. Y. Dear Sir: I desire to investigate your method, without
obligation of any kind. (Print name and address plainly.)
Enclose 25c. or 50c. if you wish the
THIS WEEK'S OUTLOOK
BY J. MADISON GATHANY
Send for Catalogue
President Wilson, Senator Har- ests? Are they disloyal? If you think so,
to whom? ding, and France
What lessons for Americans do you see F President Wilson had not raised the in the action of the British coal miners?
question, would you be under the im- What is your definition for : Paradox,
pression that the French Government referendum, nationalization of industries, had sent an official representative to Sen- deputation? ator Harding telling him that France was In connection with this topic you will do looking to America “ to lead the way for a well, indeed, to read “ England After the new association of nations"? Or would
War,” by Frank Dilnot (Doubleday, Page), you have thought that some representative and “The New Industrial Unrest,” by R. of France, speaking informally for France, S. Baker (Doubleday, Page). suggested to Senator Harding that America should be the leader in such an asso
The Haitian Situation ciation ? Some people consider this incident as a
What relationship exists between Haiti trilling affair. Is it?
and the United States? When and under What are the provisions of the Federal
what circumstances did this relationship law dealing with the question of a private
come into existence ? American citizen communicating with any
What is the matter in Haiti ? What has foreign government or its agent? When the American Marine Corps done there? and why was this law passed ? Are its
Do you think our forces should be occupypenalties too severe or not severe enough? ing Haiti ? Has Senator Harding laid himself open to What is the policy of the Democratic a charge of having violated it?
Administration in Haiti? In your opinion, Do think the less said about this in
does or does not that policy injure our you cident the better? What are your reasons ? reputation with the various other Ameri
The Outlook says that President Wilson can republics? took an astonishing step in sending his
Why should an American citizen withinquiry to Senator Harding. What do you hold judgment upon the Haitian situation think The Outlook means? Do or do you
until the findings of the Court of Inquiry not agree with it?
are published ?
366 to 371 tell you about Theodore Roose
velt which you did not know before? government officially to go over the head of our Chief Executive to appeal to the
Are any of the opinions and beliefs American people? Has the American Gov
which were held by Mr. Roosevelt in the ernment ever done this toward a foreign
eighties and expressed in these articles
still sound? government? Has a foreign government
Sketch American political history from done this toward the American Govern
1880 to 1884. What was the situation in ment? In your opinion, what contribution ougļt Who, at this time, were called the “stal
the Republican party during this time?
, this affair to make to popular education?
warts,” the “half-breeds,” and the “mug
wumps "? How many comparisons can you English Labor Blocks English make between the Presidential cainpaign Industry
of 1884 and the present one? What was
Mr. Roosevelt's attitude toward Blaine as How essential to Great Britain are her the Presidential candidate of the Repubcoal mines? Is her industrial supremacy lican party? largely due to her coal production?
What did Mr. Roosevelt do for the We are told that Great Britain keeps on cause of civil service ? How important do hand food enough to last only about a you regard his efforts in this cause ? month. In the light of this, what comment In its editorial entitled “ Theodore you make
upon the significance of the Roosevelt” what does The Outlook say British coal strike?
the test of personality is ? Is there any How much more strongly is labor organ- greater test of personality ? ized in Great Britain than in the United The Outlook tells us in this editorial States? Is labor organized there mainly on who the three outstanding personalities in political lines? Is it in the United States?
American political history are, but does not Should it be anywhere?
tell us who, in its opinion, our three greatIs the British coal strike a blow at con- est statesmen are. In your opinion, who are stitutional government? What are your they? What are your reasons for selecting reasons ?
the names you do? Do you consider that the British miners Do you believe that the personalities of are thinking soundly, economically ? Dis
men and women actually influence the cuss your answer.
course of history? Would the course of Are they acting in their own best inter- American history and world history have
been different had Mr. Roosevelt never i These questions and comments are designed not only for the use of current events classes and clubs,
been born? Upon what do you
your debating societies, teachers of history and English. belief? Is it possible to illustrate your and the like, but also for discussion in the home
answer ? and for suggestion to any reader who desires to study current affairs as well as to read about them.
Define the following terms: Hypercriti-THE EDITORS.
cal, escapades, asceticism, gyrations.
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