Read CHAPTER IV of Creative Impulse in Industry A Proposition for Educators, free online book, by Helen Marot, on


As capital and so far labor have failed to make industry an expansive experience it becomes, as Professor Dewey has pointed out, the business of educators concerned with the growth of individuals to cultivate the field.

If educators regard opportunities for growth with sufficient jealousy they will not wait for industry to emerge with a new program, or system of production; they will initiate productive enterprises where young people will be free to gain first hand experience in the problems of industry as those problems stand in relation to their time and generation. Their alliance should be made with engineers and architects and the managers of industry who have made themselves, through experience and training, masters of applied science and the economics of production. Engineers, not under the influence of business, are qualified to open up the creative aspects of production to the workers and to convince them through their own experience that that there are adventurous possibilities in industry outside the meagre offerings of payday. Mr. Robert Wolf is one of the engineers who is ready for the venture. He told the members of the Taylor Society that “scientific managers have not been scientific enough in dealing with this very important subject of stimulating the thinking and reasoning power of the workman, thereby making him self-reliant and creative.” In describing the field in which practical engineers should operate, he laid stress on their giving large space to the originating, choosing, adapting power in men and the direction of it into positive constructive channels; to men’s self-consciousness of their place in the great scheme of things.

This conception of the field of operation for engineers also described the field for educators. The latter have failed to seize the chance in the present industrial arrangement for the development of “the originating, choosing power” in the working man because they have been obsessed by the business appreciation of the working man’s power of adaptation. It is because they labor under this obsession that they turn industrial education into industrial training whenever they include industry in their curricula. Educators know that there is adventure in industry, but they believe that the adventure is the rare property of a few. They believe this so finally that they surrender this great field of experience with its priceless educational content without reserving the right of such experience even for youth. They know, as we all do, that industrial problems carry those who participate in their solution into pure and applied science; into the market of raw materials and finished products; into the search for unconquered wealth. They know that the marketing of goods is an extensive experience in the world of men and desires. They are not alone in their lack of courage to admit that limiting this experience perverts normal desires and creates false ones. For the sake of education it is to be hoped that such engineers as Mr. Wolf may overcome the timidity of educators, and that, in conjunction with men capable of productive enterprise, they will undertake to give young people an experience which is not tagged on to industry under the influence of profits, but which is inspired by the desire to produce and the opportunity to develop the inspiration.

Before establishing a system of industrial education like Germany’s, or extending the makeshift attempts which have been introduced here in the United States, it would seem well to undertake experiments which would stimulate the impulses of youth for creative experience, which would give them an industrial experience where the motive of exploitation is absent and where the stimulus was the content which the production of wealth offers. Such experiments would entail the organization of workshops in connection with schools in which the workshop experience was translated and extended.

Such workshops would be financed independently of the schools. They would not be financed on a basis of profits, but the capital invested would draw a legal rate of interest. The enterprise would be under the direction of managers competent in technological processes, in the estimate of costs, and the organization of the work on a basis of productive efficiency. The working force would be a corps of young people who had received their elementary school certificates and their certificates for employment together with the necessary complement of adult workers for the successful development of the plant. The working force would be paid the market rate of wages. The juvenile members of the force would be paid on a half-time basis as they would work in alternate shifts in the shop and in the school, so that work in the shop would be continuous and would run on full time. The exchange of shifts between the shop and school would occur daily or weekly or semi-weekly, as it was conducive to the health and the intellectual experience of the children and to the needs of production in the organization of the shop.

The workshop would be devoted to the production of some marketable article or articles which are simple in construction. The selection of the product would not depend upon technical processes of construction to furnish educational subject matter. Educationally speaking, the acquisition of technique is a factor, but not a primary one, in the modern scheme of production. The primary factors are those which have universal significance, that is which are common to all industry, the relation of labor, of mechanical equipment, of raw material, of the finished product to the whole and to each other; the relation of the market to productive effort and an effective organization of all of these.

The technical processes or their acquisition are of educational value, because they furnish the necessary experience for the evaluation and appreciation of workmanship; or would furnish a basis for such a valuation if the educational factors which are common to all industry were matters in which all the workers participated and were matters which they understood. It may be that there are certain mechanical processes which have universal technical significance and on that account would have special educational value, but even if those processes were determined and selected for industrial instruction and acquisition, it would not imply that those who acquired them were industrially educated. They would be industrially equipped to act as efficient factory attachments, but the acquisition of processes, even the fundamental ones we have had ample opportunity to discover, do not inspire creative interests and desires.

Because educational content in modern factory work is not accessible to the mass of workers, we have fostered the illusion that the educational subject matter of industry was inherent in the technical process of fabrication. As we have fostered this illusion, we have missed the educational principle applicable to the craft period, as well as to the present, that the condition of the educational requirement, is that workers’ participation in productive enterprise coincide in the long run with creative intention and accomplishment. This central requirement of industrial education means that individuals learn to function with conscious creative intention in the environment in which they live and that their learning furnishes a basis for critical and informed evaluations in industrial activity. In the craft period the creative intention required the worker’s mastery over every process of his craft. In this machine age of associated enterprise the creative intention requires the ability to associate with others in the administration of industry as well as to take the place of an individual in the routine of factory work

For the reasons I have just stated the educational experiments I am suggesting could cover advantageously one of the many industries which are generally classed as unskilled, and almost any one of these unskilled routine industries would serve as well as another. Almost any one of the so-called child labor industries could be made over into opportunities for young people to experience the stimulating effect of associating with others in a productive effort, and gain the impetus which the stimulation supplied to pursue their subject matter far afield in general mechanics, science, economics, geography, history and art.

For the educational purposes of the experiment the selection of the industry would not be made on the ground that the technical processes of one required greater intellectual activity than another; neither would the selection depend upon whether or not the industry chosen offered young people better chances than another for entrance to a trade where jobs, comparatively speaking, drew fair rates of wages, or the economic conditions were in other respects superior. The experiment would in no sense be a trade preparation but an experience where the enterprise of production was opened up and the possibilities of creative life were realized in association with others, so far as the conditions and time allowed.

The industrial basis for selection of such experiment should hinge, first, on whether or not the young people could function in the industry advantageously to themselves educationally speaking and to the industry socially considered: that is, whether or not the productive processes were in line with the capacity of adolescent children and the product was of social value; second, whether the product could be introduced successfully in the market and the enterprise become self-supporting.

At the present time, a proposition for the promotion of such an educational experiment is being worked out. Wooden toys have been chosen as the article for manufacture, because, first, the models were sufficiently simple in construction to make the work practical for young people who make up the workshop staff; it is practical for the majority of the staff to range in age from 14 to 17 years. Second, the work done by Caroline Pratt on children’s playthings has disclosed the fact that the present toy market is below grade from the point of view of the service of toys to children. The market does not supply the children with the sort of material and the sort of tools they require in their play schemes. Therefore, the product chosen has a legitimate social claim on the market. However, it would be valid, though not so interesting, if a certain sort of paper box which filled a legitimate trade need had been selected and a paper box factory had been set up as the basis of the experiment. As a theoretical illustration of my general thesis, paper boxes would serve better than wooden toys, because the latter product, as it is conceived, covers special intellectual content. But the particular sort of content is not a fundamental requirement for the educational purpose of the experiment. However, as the experiment is actually being planned in connection with wooden toys, I shall use the plan, as far as it is worked out, as my illustration. I shall refer later in discussing the school curriculum to the special intellectual content which the manufacture of these toys will represent.

After I set down the details of the experiment, which is now being planned for a workshop and school concerned with the production of play materials, I am hoping that educators and industrial managers may readily make the application to other lines of industry. The plan is tentatively confined to a two years’ course. It may be found that two years is too long a time to confine the pupils to the work and the problems of the shop. It may be found in the first year that the pupils will be interested in following some of the problems not in relation to their work and in that case they would break their connection with the shop.

The working staff of the Toy Shop will include forty young people (twenty at work at a time in the shop) from 14 to 17 years who have received their working certificates and have left school with the intention of going to work. It will include also six or seven adults who will do the work on machines too heavy or unsafe for children to handle and who will help to supervise and direct the children in their tasks. The shop itself will equal the best of shops in point of equipment, safety and sanitation. It will not, however, like many of the best, elaborate these basic features in ornamental expenditures. The shop will present itself to the young workers as sustaining the best and most essential standards in use, but like all other problems connected with the shop, the best will always be presented as a temporary achievement which with sufficient attention can be improved. An important source from which improvements may be expected is the staff of workers who are in constant contact with the plant. In other words, nothing will be offered the workers in the spirit of final achievement, and the suggestion of completeness will be avoided. The opportunity to test out and appreciate the standards will occur in the shop experience, and the chance to achieve or experiment with other standards will be reserved, as I shall show presently, for the school hours. This will be the case with methods of work and with shop organization. During the hours in the shop the workers will be occupied wholly with their special tasks as they would be in any other shop, that is in any shop which had due consideration for the labor force; as much consideration as it usually has for the economy and the protection of the mechanical force would be considerable.

The workers may acquire the technique of all or of several of the processes. Their general facility in technique may contribute to their productive value in the shop or their mastery over several processes may have its educational value for them in relation to the industry as a whole; they may to advantage shift from one process to another to relieve the strain of routine work. For the sake of production and for the sake of the educational value to the workers, the shifting of the workers from one process to another will be a matter of experiment. But the workers will not be shifted from one construction process to another for the sake of learning all the processes because skill in all the processes is not a requisite either of education or production. The experience in the shipping of goods and in the handling of raw materials, in the installation of power, in the upkeep of the equipment and the general care of the factory will be participated in by all the workers in their turn, according to the requirements of the industry.

While there will be adjustment of the workers, and trials as to the place of each will be made in the shop, intensive experiments in shop organization, like other shop problems, will be carried out in the school. This arrangement will serve the educational and the productive purpose, as experimentation should not be limited by the requirements of the shop, but by the requirements of industry at large. The school will be indeed the workshop laboratory where problems which originate in the shop can be taken over for analysis and solution. These concrete shop problems will represent required school subjects as the progress of the shop and the success of the enterprise depend upon their solution.

Among these required subjects are:

First: The Technical Problems of Manufacture, such as (a) the receiving and the storing of stock; (b) making out orders for stock from shop orders and bills of materials; (c) planning operation and routing work; (d) standardizing materials and simplifying operations; (e) the elimination in loss of time in waiting for material; (f) the division of labor; (g) advantages and disadvantages of supervising in certain operations; (h) machine versus hand work and quantity production; (i) preparing and routing shipments; (j) making out bills of lading; (k) study of friction, loose belts, improper oiling, tool cutters and saws.

Second: Keeping the Financial Accounts and Estimating Costs. (a) Making out bills of materials; (b) calculating costs of material from bill; (c) calculating board measure and unit cost of direct labor and indirect labor; (d) calculations of power used by each unit of machine power; (e) calculating pay roll; (f) making out business forms, such as billing goods, invoices, calculating discounts; (g) paying bills by check, note and draft; (h) business correspondence; (i) banking, depositing money, obtaining money on notes, discounting notes, drawing notes, balances of check books and checking up cancelled vouchers and obtaining bank balances; (j) time and call loans; (k) calculations and payment of interest on capital; (l) maintenance of sinking fund.

Third: Up-keep of the Working Force, Buildings and Equipment. (a) Heating, ventilating and lighting of the factory in relation to its effect on the workers; (b) valuation for each worker of his own physical condition and expert advice in regard to nutrition and other physical needs; (c) care of motors and mechanical equipment, care of belts, saws and cutters; (d) efficient installation of motors, sectional drive and individual drive; (e) disposition of sawdust, etc., study of exhaust fans and construction operation and function.

Fourth: The Economics of the Enterprise. (a) The market of the raw material the study of the market in relation to grades, to cost, to transportation, to quantity in cost of purchases, to time of purchase; (b) manufactured product; selection of models in relation to their use and their art values; their cost of manufacture; relation to the selling price; the relation of cost to quantity and quality; (c) the relation of the rate of wages paid in the shop to rates paid in similar industries, to cost of production, to needs of the workers; (d) necessary margin of income over expenses for the up-keep of the plant, for its extension, for the maintenance of the sinking fund and possible contribution to the expense of the school; (e) the economic value of the school to the work of the shop.

Fifth: Art and Service. The shop will not depend upon the pupils in the school for models, but will welcome models which come from the pupils as evidence that the shop experience is a stimulating one. But it will be recognized that the pupils will have little to offer on account of their inexperience and that there is a world of designers from whom to draw and the shop is eager to command the best models which are obtainable. There will be a Jury for the determination of models to be manufactured. This Jury will receive certain instruction on the subject of toys, and will be responsible for making further study of the subject. But as has been pointed out for the last ten years by Caroline Pratt, who has given the subject scientific attention, toys are the t of little children which, they use in their effort to become acquainted with their environment, which they use in schemes of play, and which are in fact efforts on their part to try out and experience the adult life into which they are thrown.

Because this is true and the market is unsupplied with toys of serious value to children, the subject will be a matter for development and the introduction in the market of models which will serve the purpose of children in their play will be considered a matter of social importance and demand the serious consideration of the Jury. This Jury will be composed of the workers in the shop, the manager of the shop, an artist, and one or two people who have given the subject of toys careful attention. Discussion of the Toy Jury on submitted toys will center around, first, the value of the toys as tools to the children in their schemes of play, and second, around the art value. Both these points will entail much examination and thought. The first will involve fundamentally the subject of education, and the second, the technique of art as it is expressed through drawing, color and design, but the decision in regard to models for manufacture finally can not rest on either of these fundamental points. It will hinge on whether or not the models selected are practical for production and whether they can be marketed at a price which will cover cost of manufacture.

The attention of the pupils will be directed to the factory and school buildings and the importance of making them a pleasant workplace and an acquisition to the neighborhood in which they are situated. The problem of noise from machinery and dirt and dust from fuel will be taken up as subjects demanding generous consideration.

Sixth: Literature and History. Authentic accounts and inspirational stores of industrial life, especially of the lumber, the woodworking, and the toy industry will be gathered by the pupils and the teachers. Special excursions, investigations, or general observations casually or unexpectedly made by the pupils and teachers will be turned to literary use or historical record. The pupils will be given full opportunity to write out statements of facts they have discovered or to write stories or plays or poetry which are inspired by the subject matter they have gathered. These literary productions will not be called for as exercises in the art of writing or of fact-recording, but as contributions toward the equipment of the school. The books which are collected as well as the original compositions will be submitted to critical analysis and accepted as accessions to the library if they come up to standards in authenticity and in literature. The teachers as well as the pupils will submit new books or other matter and before they are accepted, they will be subject to the same critical analysis as the material submitted by the children. This analysis will be the literary experience and training as it will be participated in by all the pupils who are interested in this expression of their work.

Not all of this school work is incident to the success of the shop, if we measure success by usual business standards. But it is all incident to the development of a creative impulse in the individual, and it is incident to the development of industry as a socially productive enterprise. The fact that the school and shop work represent the planning and the decisions, that they demand knowledge and experience, does not signify that the young people will assume to carry more responsibility than they are capable of, or that more will be expected of them than they are equal to. It does not mean that their insufficiency will not be recognized and admitted. On the contrary the accumulated knowledge and experience of the adult workers and the teachers will be appreciated by the pupils as they have the chance to make real and full evaluations. All the members of the staff will carry on the work in the shop as producers and learners and it is hoped they will carry on the work in the school in the same spirit. Young people will stand in the relation of partners as well as pupils to the adults associated with them. If the school and the workshop experience gives its pupils a regard for high accomplishment it will be unnecessary to stress the fact that as responsible members of the working staff the learners are not on a footing with the expert workers. The teachers or shop managers will help the younger members to gain the knowledge and facility which they have acquired as fellow members of an enterprise In which all have a common interest The participation of the young members in the enterprise will be great or small depending upon their achievement of standards. For instance, in the case of office work whether the individual children are entrusted with the correspondence, bookkeeping or banking, will depend upon whether or not they have achieved the adult standards in the shop for such business details. But standards in business accounting, in estimating costs, in planning operations, and in technique, will not be maintained as they usually are in industrial schools for the sake of the training, but for the purpose of carrying forward successfully the actual work with which the shop is concerned. While the educational experience is concerned in part with appreciation of workmanship, creative inspiration in modern industry will never be a common experience until the workers gain an understanding and recognise the significance of their special enterprise in relation to other industrial enterprises and to the business of wealth production as a whole.

If the school experience is educational, the interest of the pupils in subject matter will not end with the solution of their shop problems or with their experience in industry. The above outline of tentative school subjects representing as they do the solution of the problems of a specific industry signifies merely the starting point of an adventure for young people in the serious affairs of adult life. There will be a large margin for choice in the election of subjects in which individual children will care to specialize but these subjects will be related more or less directly to the industry. The pupils will doubtless be freer in the second year than in the first to choose where they want to specialize as they will have had time in which to establish their ground work.

But the election of studies in a two years’ half-time course will not admit of flights very far afield of the subject in hand and of the problems originally set up. Those children who find that their participation in a productive enterprise is an enriching experience may elect to follow some special leads in science, in the past and present history of manufacture and commerce, in economics, in literature or in art. The intention of the school is to open up opportunities for such expansive expressions of the concrete experience as time and the capacity of the pupils admit, provided that the expression has its valid relation to the promotion or the enrichment of the enterprise of which they are responsible members.

Certain pupils, we will say, will elect to carry further than others the testing of fuel, of heating and ventilating. Others may be concerned with experiments in power. A subject possibly will become of such absorbing interest to a pupil that he will want to experiment with the one he elects for its own sake and without relation to the problems in the shop. His interest may carry him into pure science, unattached to any problem in hand. In such cases the pupil should be given a chance to test out his interest; he should be placed on probation in relation to his elected subject and if his interest holds and is sufficiently serious he will be advised to give up the school-shop work and follow the lead his interest has taken in some other place or school.

Indeed the value of the experiment will rest on discovering whether or not it holds the interest of the pupils, or how and where it diverts it. The experiment is launched on the assumption that the normal adolescent child is concerned with the responsibilities of adult life; especially it is assumed that he is concerned to function creatively, to associate with others in productive work, to help supply such fundamental needs as the housing, feeding and clothing and the pleasures of the world demand. It is assumed that the desire for experience in pure science, in art for art’s sake, comes before as well as after this period when the need for social contact is, it is again assumed, the dominating emotion. We have no scientific proof that any of these things are true, but we have sufficient evidence to justify an experiment.

Whether or not it is possible for modern industry to offer young people a proper chance for making their social adjustments is also a question which I hope this experiment may help to answer. We can do no less than use the conditions of industry as they present themselves to us as our basis for a trial. I have started with the belief that possibly the division of labor and scientific methods of management if handled by the workers in conjunction with engineers and people of experience can be made the instruments of associated life. If there is ground for this assumption it will be important to induce the young people who enter the school and work shop to give their industrial experience a fair trial and to postpone the pursuit of pure science or art for its own sake.

The subject matter taken up in this school can be subjected to a formal school classification, under such regular academic headings as Mathematics, Science, Economics, Geography, History, Reading, Composition and Drawing. While these subjects will be experimentally rather than academically pursued, it will be a matter of small moment and short time for pupils to makeup deficiencies which the traditional school courses require. This is true because the pupils will have had first hand experience with the subject matter in which the ordinary school child is trained or hears about. The free pursuit of their studies will give them a familiarity and speaking acquaintance with the subject matter with which the traditional school is avowedly concerned but which it handles and guards as though it were the custodian of some precious, but insubstantial matter, belonging to a world somewhat attenuated.

It is the intention of this educational experiment to bring down the great enterprise of industry, so far as it is possible to its real character and to high accomplishment, and in so doing to give the young people the experience of the industrial adventure and full achievement, lest they become the subjects of those who control the movements of industry and determine the character of its advance. The practical test of the experiment briefly outlined would be: (1) Was the creative impulse aroused? (2) Were standards of workmanship discovered and sustained? (3) Was a broad as well as a working knowledge of subject matter acquired? (4) Did the children approach established methods in a spirit of hospitality and of inquiry as to their validity? (5) Did the problems create sufficient interest to arouse the desire and will to reject faulty methods, and introduce others of greater service? (6) Was the enterprise a productive one from the point of view of the market and an educational one from the point of view of growth?

Such experiments educators and engineers would enter together and together enjoy in reality the development of creative effort, which is their profession. Such productive educational experiments in the absence of profiteering would give meaning to the early years of industrial life which now lead the children nowhere. They would give the young people, as the experiments come up to the test, the spirit for the adventure of industrial life, the courage and desire for solving the pressing issues of their time.

If the claim made by employers were true, that from 95 to 99 per cent of the working force is without productive impulse, that this condition of development represents, as they say it does, the “native limitation” of the men who work, industry as a progressive enterprise is doomed and high hopes for civilization are without foundation.

If the position of employers is true and the limitations of individuals are as final as they have determined, there is nothing to do except perfect the mechanical responses of men. This preeminently would be the business of employers and not of education which is concerned with the growth of the individual. On such a basis, it is inconceivable that educators would concern themselves with preparing people for industry. If, however, these limitations are not native, but are due to some incompatibility between the institution of industry and the interest of the labor force, then the limitations of workers and of industry are a matter of paramount importance in the field of education.

As I have said before there is a common supposition among people who are not employers of labor, that such features of industry as the mechanical devices of modern technology and the division of labor in factory organization, are in their nature opposed to the expansive development of the people involved; that these features of apparent intrinsic importance to mass production, are antagonistic to individual growth and to the interest of workers in productive effort.

Without question, it is the business of educators to determine whether such features of industry as machinery and the division of labor are fundamentally opposed to growth or whether they are opposed only in the way in which they have been put to use and directed. We can discover whether or not these features are opposed only as the people concerned have the chance to master them and undertake, through their experience, to turn them to account.

Because industry has been impersonalized and the mechanics of associated effort in industry worked out in such large measure, it is to-day possible to conceive of spiritual as well as physical association in productive enterprise. A difficulty in the way of this conception, aside from the business complex, is our habit of thinking exclusively of creative effort as an individual expression. In describing the individual expression we would say that a man may create a machine but that when men jointly produce one they work. The creative act is in the conception of the machine in conjunction with its construction, and the conception, after our habit of thinking, is an individual and isolated achievement. As a matter of fact it frequently is. A man may create a machine if he conceives it and constructs it or if he conceives and directs its construction. Those he directs, those who do the work of construction alone, do not participate in the creative act, as the creative act is the concentrated intellectual and emotional expression and effort to produce an article or idea. The creative impulse is concerned with the transforming of a concept or some material into an expanded concept or a new object. The creative impulse itself finds its satisfaction in the process of completion and loses its force when the concept or object is produced. The use of the concept or object created is not a characteristic of the creative but of the social impulse. A man who is interested in the use or application of a product, the value it has for others, possesses the social impulse as well as the creative. One impulse is intensive and the other extensive.

But the creative effort is not necessarily an individual matter. It may be possible for a group of people to associate cordially and freely together with a single creative purpose and endeavor. It may be possible for each worker to experience the joy of creative work as he takes part with others in the planning of the work along with the labor of fabrication. It is a creative experience or dull labor as his association with others in the solution of the problem is freely pursued and genuine, or as it is forced and perfunctory.

My justification for making this assertion will be recognized by every one who has had the opportunity to attend shop meetings of a newly organized trade union. These meetings are unique as they disclose the force in a productive group, and the value of giving the individuals engaged in routine work the opportunity to pool their common experience and pass judgment on methods of work. Whatever decisions these workers come to, none are fully realized or freely pursued under conditions which industry imposes. But in the course of shop meeting discussions, it becomes clear to an observer that methods of work is as absorbing a topic as the relation of the work to the wage. The routine which is the apparent result of the division of labor, becomes under discussion a matter of technical import. The workers’ knowledge of labor saving devices and their resources for inventing new ones are as expert as is the business man’s knowledge of how labor cost can be saved. This matter under discussion is of high interest and concern. There is an integrity in the concern which evidently springs from experience and the suppressed interest in perfecting methods and the inter-relation of the workers in a shop. The vitality and intelligence of these machine tenders may well inspire the agitator who addresses their meetings to curse a system which withholds full knowledge of the workshop and blocks the opportunity for eager workers to try out new schemes born of intensive experience and failure to function in the fullness of their capacity.

Industry offers opportunities for creative experience which is social in its processes as well as in its destination. The imaginative end of production does not terminate with the possession of an article; it does not center in the product or in the skill of this or that man, but in the development of commerce and technological processes and the evolution of world acquaintanceship and understanding. Modern machinery, the division of labor, the banking system, methods of communication, make possible real association. But they are real and possible only as the processes are open for the common participation, understanding and judgment of those engaged in industrial enterprise; they are real and possible as the animus of industry changes from exploitation to a common and associated desire to create; they are real and possible as the individual character of industry gives way before the evolution of social effort.

We speak of interdependence in industrial enterprise as though it were some new thing. The early interdependence had its roots in the common knowledge and use of an inherited technology, where property was common in the common use of it. Interdependence due to modern technology has increased, and the interdependence which characterizes our own time is economic. The tools of industry as well as the natural resources are owned, and only by application to the owner can a man live or labor. However disastrous that ownership has been to past generations, it has bound men together in their use of what we ironically call labor saving devices; devices which have not saved labor in the interest of labor.

Out of this close association of men in industry have grown our national and international business corporations and our national and international labor unions. These corporations and unions are transforming local and provincial relations into cosmopolitan acquaintanceship. The recognized value of the acquaintance is in the extension of knowledge of people through their use and wont of material things, of the ways and means of life outside limited and personal areas. The acquaintanceship does not imply friendship or sympathy or understanding among men or nations, it does not necessarily result in wisdom, and to date, it does not result in a larger social spirit. The acquaintanceship is based not on mutuality of interest, but rather on rivalry and misinterpretations.

While our institutional life is an acknowledgment that interdependence is a necessary factor in modern wealth production, we still measure the strength of a man, or a society, or a nation, and say of all that they are strong or weak as they are able apparently to stand alone. We have not yet discovered that a desire to stand alone in an enterprise where people are of necessity dependent, is a weakness and that our ability to cooeperate with others in such an enterprise is a measure of our strength, “From a social standpoint dependence denotes a power rather than a weakness; it involves interdependence. There is always danger that increased personal independence will decrease the social capacity of an individual. In making him more self-reliant, it makes him more self-sufficient; it may lead to aloofness and indifference. It often makes an individual so insensitive in his relation to others as to develop an illusion of being really able to stand and act alone, an unnamed form of insanity which is responsible for a large part of the remediable suffering of the world."

This provincial desire of individuals to stand apart and prove to themselves and to others that they are exceptional people is a primitive ambition in conflict with the actual facts of a present day society where interdependence is a law of living. This conflict is kept alive by the industrial motive of exploitation of people and of wealth. Exploitation precludes sympathy as it precludes growth. “For sympathy as a desirable quality is something more than mere feeling; it is cultivated imagination for what men have in common and rebellion at whatever unnecessarily divides them.” And further, Professor Dewey remarks: “It must be borne in mind that ultimately social efficiency means neither more nor less than capacity to share in a give-and-take experience. It covers all that makes one’s own experience more worth while to others and all that makes one participate more richly in the worth while experiences of others."

What Professor Dewey says in reference to the growth of children and adults is as abundantly significant in its application to society. “Normal child and normal adult alike ... are engaged in growing. The difference between them is not the difference between growth and no growth, but between the modes of growth appropriate to different conditions. With respect to the development of powers devoted to coping with specific scientific and economic problems we may say the child should be growing in manhood. With respect to sympathetic curiosity, unbiassed responsiveness, and openness of mind, we may say that the adult should be growing in childlikeness."

As America and the greater part of Europe have been for over a century devoting their attention to coping with specific scientific and economic problems, is their manhood due to appear? Is the raw, immature character of present day association and interdependence to be enriched by sympathetic curiosity, unbiased responsiveness and openness of mind? In the midst of this world war I venture no prediction on the appearance of manhood. But clearly there is a line of action for educators to pursue. Clearer than ever before it is evident that it is the business of educators to see that schemes of education are introduced which do not fit children into a system of industry that serves either Empire or business, but a system that serves whole-heartedly creative enterprise as it might be pursued in the period of youth as well us in adult life. Within the past century and particularly in the past generation we have made brave efforts at cooeperation, but our failures to realize the spirit of cooeperation are as notorious as the efforts themselves. The effort to work together in industry has been brutal rather than brave. We shall account for this brutality in industry and recognize why the spirit for cooeperation in other fields has failed, as we distinguish between a puerile desire of individuals to express themselves and their impulses for creative enterprise.

As industry through the ages has changed from the isolated business of provisioning a family to the associated work of provisioning the world, it has blazed a pathway for relationships which are socially creative. But art in social relationships will not be realized until a passionate desire for the unlimited expression of creative effort overcomes inordinate desires of individuals for self-expression. Art in living together is possible where the intensive interest of individuals in their personal affairs and attainments, in their social group, in their vocation, in their political state, is deeply tempered by a wide interest and sympathetic regard for the life of other groups and people. Art in social relationships is contingent on broad sympathies and extended relationships, and it is contingent as well on ability to work for social ends while remaining in large measure disregardful of the personal stakes involved. Because of our inability to lose our personal attachment for our own work, because of what it may yield us in personal ways, the world never yet has experienced the joy and creative possibility of associated effort And because it has not we have still to experience art in social contact.

In group work there may be as much power to release emotional and intellectual creative force as in individual work; there may be more we do not know. There is a tendency we do know in isolated, individual creative effort, unless highly charged with creative impulse, to cultivate personal equations intensively, limit relationships, and circumscribe vision. As the movement of our time is toward world acquaintanceship, the desire of individuals to limit their experiences for the sake of intensifying them, signifies from a social point of view as well as a personal, a neurotic tendency. There is a common and false supposition that the neurotic temperament is induced in the world of art. It is true that an art environment attracts people whose creative impulse is feeble or not sufficiently strong to sublimate the desire for intensive personal excitation. Such people choose art associations because they are limited to individual expression and not because of the overpowering necessity to do work which is creative. As the era in which we live represents a struggle for associated work and common interests and its highest concept is opposed to limited interests and autocratic rule, we may well give our best endeavor to realizing creative impulse in the field of associated effort, in the hope that the field of art will be some day coextensive with life, and that its expressions will not be confined to the limited world of sculptors, painters, musicians and poets.