It is as the third factor in education that the handling and experience of knowledge comes, and of all knowledge that which is most accessible, most capable of being handled with the greatest variety of educational benefit, so as to include the criticism of evidence, the massing of facts, the extraction and testing of generalisations, lies in the two groups of the biological sciences and the exact sciences. No doubt a well-planned system of education will permit of much varied specialisation, will, indeed, specialise those who have special gifts from a very early age, will have corners for Greek, Hebrew, Sanscrit, philology, archaeology, Christian theology, and so on, and so on; nevertheless, for that great mass of sound men of indeterminate all-round ability who are the intellectual and moral backbone of a nation, it is in scientific studies that their best training lies, studies most convenient to undertake and most readily applied in life. From either of the two groups of the sciences one may pass on to research or to technical applications leading directly to the public service. The biological sciences broaden out through psychology and sociology to the theory and practice of law, and to political life. They lead also to medical and agricultural administration. The exact sciences lead to the administrative work of industrialism, and to general economics.
These are the broad, clear lines of the educational necessities of a modern community, plain enough to see, so that every man who is not blinded by prejudice and self-interest can see them to-day. We have now before us a phase of opportunity in educational organisation that will never recur again. Now that the apostolic succession of the old pedagogy is broken, and the entire system discredited, it seems incredible that it can ever again be reconstituted in its old seats upon the old lines. In these raw, harsh days of boundless opportunity, the opportunity of the new education, because it is the most fundamental, is assuredly the greatest of all.
VIII. WHAT THE WAR IS DOING FOR WOMEN
To discuss the effect of this war upon the relations of men and women to each other is to enter upon the analysis of a secular process compared with which even the vast convulsions and destructions of this world catastrophe appear only as jolts and incidents and temporary interruptions. There are certain matters that sustain a perennial development, that are on a scale beyond the dramatic happenings of history; wars, the movements of peoples and races, economic changes, such things may accelerate or stimulate or confuse or delay, but they cannot arrest the endless thinking out, the growth and perfecting of ideas, upon the fundamental relationships of human Beings. First among such eternally progressive issues is religion, the relationship of man to God; next in importance and still more immediate is the matter of men’s relations to women. In such matters each phase is a new phase; whatever happens, there is no going back and beginning over again. The social life, like the religious life, must grow and change until the human story is at an end.