previous next
[133] for good or for evil, is easily manufactured in a few generations, and that birth and wealth both have a hand in the manufacture.

The curious thing is that those who profess a religion which theoretically goes back to the son of a carpenter should fall in with this assumption and acquiesce in either of these aristocracies as the final and sufficient thing. If there is to be any real or permanent progress in human society, it must be by that process of levelling upward which has already taken us beyond feudalism and human slavery, but is still struggling with the inequalities of a transition period. We must surely come to a time when no labor will degrade except by being unmanly or unwomanly, and when good manners will be exercised to all upon something approaching a level, and not by looking down from above. We cannot be satisfied with plantation manners or servile manners; they must be humane manners — that is, human. As vocations are gradually refined and elevated by machinery-turning, as Napoleon Bonaparte predicted, trades into arts — it becomes more and more absurd to classify men and women by occupation instead of character. Howells has lately pointed out how pitifully Dickens stultified his own democratic tendencies

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
William Dean Howells (1)
Dickens (1)
Napoleon Bonaparte (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: