An American Idyll eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 188 pages of information about An American Idyll.
have, with our 100,000,000 inhabitants, yet to produce that little town, her Dante, her Andrea del Sarto, her Michael Angelo, her Leonardo da Vinci, her Savonarola, her Giotto, or the group who followed Giotto’s picture.  Florence had a marvelous energy—­re-lease experience.  All our industrial formalism, our conventionalized young manhood, our schematized universities, are instruments of balk and thwart, are machines to produce protesting abnormality, to block efficiency.  So the problem of industrial labor is one with the problem of the discontented business man, the indifferent student, the unhappy wife, the immoral minister—­it is one of maladjustment between a fixed human nature and a carelessly ordered world.  The result is suffering, insanity, racial-perversion, and danger.  The final cure is gaining acceptance for a new standard of morality; the first step towards this is to break down the mores-inhibitions to free experimental thinking.”

If only the time had been longer—­if only the Book itself could have been finished!  For he had a great message.  He was writing about a thousand words a day on it the following summer, at Castle Crags, when the War Department called him into mediation work and not another word did he ever find time to add to it.  It stands now about one third done.  I shall get that third ready for publication, together with some of his shorter articles.  There have been many who have offered their services in completing the Book, but the field is so new, Carl’s contribution so unique, that few men in the whole country understand the ground enough to be of service.  It was not so much to be a book on Labor as on Labor-Psychology—­and that is almost an unexplored field.


Three days after Carl started east, on his arrival in Seattle, President Suzzallo called him to the University of Washington as Head of the Department of Economics and Dean of the College of Business Administration, his work to begin the following autumn.  It seemed an ideal opportunity.  He wrote:  “I am very, very attracted by Suzzallo. . . .  He said that I should be allowed to plan the work as I wished and call the men I wished, and could call at least five.  I cannot imagine a better man to work with nor a better proposition than the one he put up to me. . . .  The job itself will let me teach what I wish and in my own way.  I can give Introductory Economics, and Labor, and Industrial Organization, etc.”  Later, he telegraphed from New York, where he had again seen Suzzallo:  “Have accepted Washington’s offer. . . .  Details of job even more satisfactory than before.”

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An American Idyll from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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