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static, and dwells upon a form of nude art that exists instincts of men and women are thus in accord with solely in its imagination.
the deductions of moralists. The Christian Church, Opposed in this matter as these several writers the expositor of the moral sentiments of mankind, are, it yet may be asked whether any distinct differ- has always condemned the sensuous aspects of art. ence of opinion exists among those persons who have a Here is a passage from Mr. Symonds's recently pubmoral right to enter judgment. It must be remembered lished “Renaissance in Italy," which reads strangely that while artists, and possibly art-critics, are compe- by the side of the confident utterances of “The tent judges of all purely artistic matters, are final Home Journal”: “On the very threshold of the authority as to the drawing, the composition, the chic matter I am bound to affirm my conviction that the aroscuro, the texture, and the tone of any painting, spiritual purists of all ages the Jews, the icono. they are even less competent than laymen to pro- clasts of Byzantium, Savonarola, and our Puritan announce upon its moral effects. In all art-features cestors—were justified in their mistrust of plastic artists are experts; but in effects upon morals they art. The spirit of Christianity and the spirit of are not experts—they are even partial, one-sided figurative art are opposed, not because such art is judges, their personal interests being largely con- immoral, but because it can not free itself from sencerned in the verdict. The true experts as to the suous associations. It is always hurrying us back to morals of a work of art are students of morals, the dear life of earth, from which its faith would those persons who make a study of the operations sever us. It is always reminding us of the body of the mind, of the natural tendencies of emotion and which piety bids us to forget. Painters and sculppassion, of the laws of ethics. These are the only per- tors glorify that which saints and ascetics have morsons who can be accepted as authority in any question tified. The masterpieces of Titian and Correggio, of morals. This fact needs to be enforced, inasmuch for example, lead the soul away from compunction, as great mental confusion exists in regard thereto. away from penitence, away from worship even, to It is continually assumed that the opinions of artists dwell on the delight of youthful faces, blooming and critics of art are authoritative as to the ethics of color, graceful movement, delicate emotion. ... art because they are authorities as to the techniques When the worshiper would fain ascend on wings of of art. This is a singular mistake. Mr. Page's ecstasy to God, the infinite, ineffable, unrealized, opinion of the execution of Titian's Venus is enti- how can he endure the contact of those splendid tled to very great respect; but Mr. Page's opinion forms in which the lust of the eye and the pride of as to the moral effect of Titian's Venus is worth very life,' professing to subserve devotion, remind him little by the side of Dr. Crosby's opinion on that rudely of the goodliness of sensual existence? ... subject, just as Dr. Crosby's opinion as to the color As displayed in its most perfect phases in Greek and drawing of any performance is of no authority sculpture and Venetian painting, art dignifies the whatever. This distinction has not, we believe, actual mundane life of man; but Christ, in the lanbeen pointed out; and yet it is a very clear one. guage of uncompromising piety, means everything People, being dependent upon certain authorities for most alien to this mundane life-self-denial, abstiinstruction in the principles of art, have come to be- nence from fleshly pleasure, the waiting for true lieve that their domain extends to the morals of art. bliss beyond the grave.” What, we have to ask, is the opinion of experts in the This is a just and exact analysis of sensuous art matter? What do moralists say about the influence as it stands related to religion, and by the side of of nude art in morals? Now, there are two classes this clear and logical exposition "The Home Jourof moralists that are almost unanimous in their judg- nal” argument, that “art" (referring specially to senment: First, there is the whole body of the people who suous art) “ holds a place as an agency of spiritual without special training have yet the instincts that culture side by side and one with all pure and undecome of moral culture ; second, there is the whole filed religion,” vanishes into the atmosphere of the body of teachers of ethics, the specialists who make transcendent and the absurd. Art gives us many the study of right and wrong the business of their pleasurable emotions, but we suspect that at its very lives--and these two classes are nearly of one mind best it is never more than simply not im
ral. By as to the propriety of nudity in art. The instinct the very conditions of its being art is sensuous in of modesty, for instance, is very powerful in women character, appealing to the love of color and to the of all classes and grades, and we may be sure that sense of form. The story that a picture tells may the mothers, wives, and sisters of men are here excite very ecstatic feelings, but the story is the liternearly of one mind—altogether of one mind, if we ary and not the artistic quality of a work of art. except the few who being artists or connected with We agree with Dr. Crosby as to the possibility artists, or otherwise under the influence of the art- of pure marble nudities, and unquestionably sculptheories of the day, have forced down their instincts ture is less sensuous than the nude figure in painting ; and brought themselves by a series of sophistries to but we deny the distinction that is drawn between think things which in their heart of hearts they do lewd and what is called pure art in their moral effects. not believe. If the instincts of modesty are not so Lewd art, as we have already said, simply disgusts; powerful in men as in women, they are still very but what is the effect of the nude-we include in general, and, until reasoned away by artistic sophis- the nude the semi-nude also—as we find it from tries, are sure to be shocked at those displays in art the hands of the masters, upon the susceptible imwhich in real life are never permitted. The natural agination of youth? In considering this question
is necessary to keep near to earth, and not lose our. us, and there is there abundant room and need for selves in mists; to accept art as it is and human na- the development of its culture. Here apples, peachture as it is, and not to lose the whole issue in a es, pears, grapes, melons of all kinds, pour into our flood of poetic declamation. If “The Home Jour- market with immense profusion, and women who nal" argument is at all true, if the “body of man attempted to compete with the established growers inspires by its simplicity, nobleness, and purity of of these articles would find their task a difficult one. line,” then it must do so in nature as well as in artThe culture of cherries and plums and hot-house and the civilized world has consequently made a grapes would admit, we should say, of considerable mistake in clothing it. The human figure, however, extension, and it is possible that choice varieties of is clothed by the necessities of climate as well as by all kinds of fruits are never fully up to demand. the dictates of modesty; and a mystery thereby is There are some articles which we scarcely cultivate made of the body which art can not unfold to cu- at all in this country Mushrooms, for instance, are rious speculation without danger. The imagina- largely imported from France, our native supply be. tion of youth speedily catches fire at the vision of ing wholly irregular and inadequate. The mushfemale beauty that art reveals; it finds no fascination room-culture in the abandoned stone-quarries in the in coarse art, but a world of untold and dangerous vicinity of Paris is very extensive, one proprietor emotions in the loveliness that sculptor and painter alone having twenty-one miles of beds in these subdelight to dwell upon. To say that youthful imagina- terranean galleries. Here is a wholly unworked tion ought not to be sensuously stirred by art of this branch of horticulture that women might take up kind is to require of it more than is possible in na- to great profit. It is fairly certain that with an inture. Such emotions are natural, but they are danger- crease of supply of fresh mushrooms the consumpous because they are apt to lead to great evil, and tion would steadily increase, and eventually reach a consequently the moralists are right in deploring all hundred-fold what it is now. art and literature that tend to inflame them. The Flower-culture has greatly increased in recent plain common sense of the world is right in this years in the vicinity of all our large cities, but the thing, as it is in many other things which philoso- taste for flowers is something that grows upon what phers and critics quarrel over.
it feeds, so here is large space for women to exercise their skill and industry. The supply and the
demand for cut flowers are both very large, and WOMEN AS HOR: ICULTURISTS.
probably keep pace with each other, but window
flower-culture is only in its infancy. Within the The last “ Macmillan's Magazine " has an arti- last few years an increased taste for this sort of orcle entitled “ A New Vocation for Women," which namentation has been very evident. Ten years ago attempts to show what may be done in horticulture there was probably not an hotel or restaurant in New by female labor. Much of what is said pertains York that planted flowers in its courtyards or apspecially to England, but there are some general proaches, and now nearly every one has them. Very truths and a few suggestions that are applicable to beautiful, indeed, is the flower garniture at some of this country.
“ There is," it says, one particular these places. In private dwellings window-boxes section of the people to which gardening as an in- of flowers are becoming more and more common, dustry ought to prove extremely beneficial, though it but the majority of houses are still without this has never yet recognized the fact that horticulture pleasant and graceful ornamentation, and hence the as a profession is suitable to it. We allude to wo- ladies who take up plant-growing might with a little men, and we fail to see why women of all classes tact greatly stimulate the public taste in this parshould not adopt this vocation with success.” With ticular. And what more fitting pursuit for women the exception of the roughest kinds of labor, there than the cultivation of flowers ? in what more charmis scarcely a department of gardening, according ing conjunction can we imagine them? what emto this writer, that is not adapted to women, ployment is there anywhere that accords so exactly “while for many operations their quick intuition, with their love of color, their passion for beauty, their patience, and their skillful fingers are preëmi- their delicate susceptibility to odors, their delight in nently suited." He mentions hybridizing, grafting, whatever is sweet, cleanly, pure, and needing care budding, disbudding, and asks, Who could accom- and nurture? It is a wonder that flower-rearing is plish these tasks better? “The growth and ten- not already generally in their hands. dance of seeds and cuttings, the management of The practical difficulties with young women plant-houses, the training of espalier and cordon searching for a vocation is that they have no capital, fruit-trees, all these are works suitable for women ; no special training, little knowledge of current comand, since many ladies undertake them for their own mercial needs, and no disposition to enter untried amusement, there does not seem to be any reason fields of labor. They are ceaselessly demanding new why others should not do so for profit."
avenues for employment, under the impression apEngland differs from this country largely in the parently that by talking about them vigorously these fact that a greater part of its fruit is imported, while new avenues will open of their own accord. Aswith us fruit importation consists solely of tropical suredly fruit-growing, flower-culture, and kindred products. Fruit, with the exception of a few kinds, pursuits offer no great obstacles to young women is not nearly so abundant in England as it is with with a small measure of determination and a little
activity of imagination. The great point with us all the thing they comprehend and delight in. “No is to be able to think out things, and this is what we man," says the “Cornhill" writer, “ whose mental mean in this instance by imagination. Neither men experience has ranged through the ages, whose symnor women are likely to gain much success in estab- pathies have been enlarged by travel, been developed lished vocations, much less enter upon untried ones, by education, and been elevated by history, can fail unless they have ideas, the power to construct, to to walk through the room full of dazzling color in form, to plan, to discover relations between facts Burlington House without feeling that he has been and possibilities of facts, to detect significances and moving in a somewhat narrow world. He will have follow them to their logical outcome. In flower- seen much to please, no little to move him. The growing, however, there is this advantage-many current features of domestic life, the curiosities of ladies have natural taste and a little smattering of contemporary civilization, the faces of his more celethe art, and hence it would not be difficult for them brated acquaintances, reproductions of natural sceto gain sufficient knowledge from books and practi- nery or picturesque architecture, these and much cal experience in their own gardens to make a test more of the same sort will have been offered to his of the suggestion which the writer in “ Macmillan" gaze ; but he will not, he can not feel that he has makes ;
and eventually training-schools may be es- been admitted to very high regions of art, or that he tablished in which young women could enter. The has been lifted beyond the petty range of his own thing is, to make a beginning; and to make a be- normal experiences.” This feeling will be expeginning the very first requisite is practical intelli- rienced by every layman who enters an English or gence.
American art-gallery if he is a man of imagination and reflection ; but the need thus set forth does
not appear to be felt by artists and connoisseurs. ART AND DEMOCRACY.
The whole cultivated art - world seems to be ani.
mated by other ideas; to be wholly absorbed by THERE is an article in the August “Cornhill,” the refinements and subtilties of art, rather than with the title of “Art and Democracy," which de- by high, large, and great ideas. “Art,” says Mr. plores the influence of the multitude upon art be- Whistler, “ may be concerned alone with the arrangecause “the many prefer small themes to large themes, ment of color and line." This is what the “higher little subjects to big ones, matters of private interest culture” declares is art. Color, “ nocturnes,"“ symto matters of public interest." The many, we are phonies,” arrangements, impressions, decoration, efassured, are very worthy people, “but it would be fects in light and shade, any sort of play and trick ridiculous to pretend that they cherish lofty ideas in with pigments and lines, constitute the new philosoany direction, and most of all in the direction of phy. Is art of this sort the art of the many, the art art. The day of high art is over ; the turn of the of the democracy, the art of the people, the art of average person has come, and he is using his rights feeling and passion ? The people demand emotion freely and unreservedly, not exactly by replacing and feeling in poetry; the pedants think more of high art with low art, but with common art-with arrangement, of new tricks in versification, of freshan art that accords with his own ideals, and his ideals ly used terms; and a similar manifestation is apare comprised within the limits of his own experi- parent in art. “Can not," said Lord Beaconsfield, ence."
in his address at the last Royal Academy dinner, If the writer of this article had substituted aris- "can not English art attempt a higher flight, and tocracy for democracy in his title, and argued that the give to the nation pictures to compare with those world of fashion "prefers small themes to large which Raphael has bequeathed to Rome, and Tintothemes, little subjects to big ones, matters of private retto to Venice ?" In order that this sort of art shall interest to matters of public interest,” he would, we revive, there must be a change of heart among the apprehend, have come much nearer to the truth. His artists rather than among the people. Dilettanteism arguments are all sound, but he applies them to the must be extinguished. Delight in the mere gramwrong class. Haydon, who declaimed incessantly mar of art must be changed for delight in ideas. about high art, had once persuaded a wealthy gen- The notion that the story of a picture is the literatleman to purchase one of his big heroic canvases ture and not the art of a picture-not the thing with for a certain place on his walls. “But, my dear," which art is really concerned-must be abandoned. exclaimed the gentleman's wife, “what then shall I And, if the primary concern of art is arrangement do with my piano ?" The high-art picture had to of colors and lines, there is necessarily an exclusion give way to the piano; and this fairly measures the from it of high and noble ideas. The artists unconcern that aristocracy feels in art. On the other doubtedly do aim to express poetical sentiment in hand, there has never been a great art in the world art, to awaken sensations by harmonies of color just that has not been rooted in the strong sympathies as sensations are awakened by harmonies of music ; and passionate feelings of the people. The democ- and, when poetry of technical expression is wedded racy have no taste for pettiness and prettiness, for to the poetry of story, when harmonious lines and the small perfections of art, for the pedantry and colors are employed to illustrate great heroic facts niceties of pundits and critics. The people are in human history and human experience, we shall doubtless indifferent to refinement and insensible to have a high art which people of both high and low subtilties of expression, but largeness is distinctly degree will unite in loving and admiring.
Books of the Day.
a somewhat melancholy interest attaches to Mr. functions has gone on pari passu with the evolution Herbert Spencer's “Data of Ethics," * because of of structures, so advance in conduct has been strictthe intimation by which it is accompanied that the ly correlative to advance in structure and functions. System of Synthetic Philosophy, upon which the au- In the lowest types of animals the conduct is conthor has so long been engaged, is likely to remain stituted of actions so little adjusted to ends that life incomplete. According to the programme public continues only as long as the accidents of the envication long since announced, two more volumes of ronment are favorable ; in animals of a somewhat “The Principles of Sociology" should have preceded higher grade, along with more developed structures the “ Data of Ethics,” which is the first division of and greater power of combining functions, we find a the work on “The Principles of Morality,” with better adjustment of acts to ends, and a consequent which the system ends. Mr. Spencer explains that preservation of life for a longer period ; and finally he was led to deviate from the order originally set in man we not only find that the adjustments of acts down by the fear that failing health might compel to ends are both more numerous and better than him to leave the final work of the series, to which among lower animals, but we find the same thing on all the preceding works are subsidiary and prelimi- comparing the doings of higher races of men with nary, unexecuted. “ Written as far back as 1842, those of lower races. And, along with this greater my first essay, consisting of letters on ‘The Proper elaboration of life produced by the pursuit of more Sphere of Government,' vaguely indicated what I numerous ends, there goes that increased duration of conceived to be certain general principles of right life which constitutes the supreme end." and wrong in political conduct ; and from that time This leads up naturally to the essential point of onward my ultimate purpose, lying behind all proxi. Mr. Spencer's work-his definition of good and bad mate purposes, has been that of finding for the prin- conduct. Illustrating by many examples the various ciples of right and wrong, in conduct at large, a sci- uses of the two words, he points out that, in the last entific basis. To leave this purpose unfulfilled, after analysis, they always refer to the greater or less effi. making so extensive a preparation for fulfilling it, ciency of the adjustment of instruments or acts to would be a failure the probability of which I do not ends. “The good knife is one which will cut; the like to contemplate; and I am anxious to preclude good gun is one which carries far and true ; the good it, if not wholly, still partially. Hence the step I house is one which duly yields the shelter, comfort, now take."
and accommodation sought for. Conversely, the Another consideration which has made the au- badness alleged of the umbrella or the pair of boots, thor anxious to indicate, at least in outline, this final refers to their failures in fulfilling the ends of keepwork of his system, is that the establishment of rulesing off the rain, and comfortably protecting the feet, of right conduct on a scientific basis is a pressing with due regard to appearances. . And those doneed of the time. “Now that moral injunctions are ings of men which, morally considered, are indifferlosing the authority given by their supposed sacred ent, we class as good or bad, according to their sucorigin, the secularization of morals is becoming im- cess or failure. A good jump is a jump which, reperative. Few things can happen more disastrous moter ends ignored, well achieves the immediate than the decay and death of a regulative system no purpose of a jump; and a stroke at billiards is called longer fit, before another and fitter regulative system good when the movements are skillfully adjusted to has grown up to replace it"; and yet this, accord- the requirements. Oppositely, the badness of a ing to Mr. Spencer, is precisely what is now happen- walk that is shuffling and an utterance that is indising.
tinct is alleged because of the relative non-adaptaFrom the foregoing explanation it will be seen tions of the acts to the ends.” Now, since (as is that “The Data of Ethics" constitutes the first di- shown in the chapter on the evolution of conduct) vision of the work on “ The Principles of Morality," the great primary aim of the actions of living crea. with which Mr. Spencer intended that his System of tures is the preservation, prolongation, and betterPhilosophy should end, and that its aim is to find a ing of life, those actions or causes of conduct which scientific basis for the principles of right and wrong tend to preserve, prolong, or better life, are called in human conduct. In seeking such a scientific ba- good, while those which tend to the opposite effects sis, of course the most important preliminary step is are called bad. to define with exactness what is meant by right and Of course, this judging as good, conduct which wrong, or good and bad, conduct ; but, in order to conduces to life involves the assumption that animake his definition more intelligible, Mr. Spencer mate existence is desirable—in other words, that life prefaces it with a most suggestive chapter on the is worth living-and, since it is universally admitted
that life can be regarded as desirable only in case it * The Data of Ethics. By Herbert Spencer. New brings a surplus of agreeable feeling, it follows that York: D. Appleton & Co. 12mo, pp. 288.
the test of good or bad conduct is whether or not it produces this surplus of agreeable feeling. “There common with the phenomena presented by aggreis no escape,” says Mr. Spencer, “from the admis- gates of these highest-if one and all conform to the sion that in calling good the conduct which sub- laws of evolution ; then the necessary implication is serves life, and bad the conduct which hinders or that those phenomena of conduct in these highest destroys it, and in so implying that life is a blessing, creatures with which morality is concerned, also conand not a curse, we are inevitably asserting that form." He takes up in succession the physical view, conduct is good or bad according as its total effects the biological view, the psychological view, and the are pleasurable or painful"; and further along he sociological view, devoting a chapter to each. These formulates the proposition that, “taking into ac- chapters are in the highest degree interesting and incount immediate and remote effects on all persons, structive, involving as they do a summary and applithe good is universally the pleasurable.” This being cation of all the preceding volumes of the series ; the vital point of Mr. Spencer's ethical theory, we but they can not be summarized-in fact, an ade. will quote his own summary of his argument : quate summary would be very apt to be longer than
the chapters themselves. The truth that conduct is considered by us as good or
Proceeding to the next stage in his argument, bad, according as its aggregate results, to self or others, Mr. Spencer demonstrates the relativity of pains and or both, are pleasurable or painful, we found on examination to be involved in all the current judgments on
pleasures - comparatively familiar topic, which, conduct : the proof being that reversing the applications however, he renders fresh and living by his method of the words creates absurdities. And we found that of treatment. He then discusses — and the four every other proposed standard of conduct derives its chapters in which he discusses them are among the authority from this standard. Whether perfection of most significant and interesting in the volume—the nature is the assigned proper aim, or virtuousness of ac- relative claims of Egoism, or self-regarding actions, tion, or rectitude of motive, we saw that definition of the and Altruism, or other-regarding actions. The conperfection, the virtue, the rectitude, inevitably brings us
clusion which he reaches is that both are primordial down to happiness experienced in some form, at some time, by some person, as the fundamental idea. Nor requisites to life ; self-preservation being the first could we discover any intelligible conception of blessed
law of nature, while care for others (as, for example, ness, save one which implies a raising of consciousness,
in the rearing of offspring) is essential to the conindividual or general, to a happier state; either by miti- tinuance of life from the beginning. The two are gating pains or increasing pleasures.
not, as is commonly supposed, mutually exclusive ; Even with those who judge of conduct from the re- neither are they necessarily antagonistic, save in their ligious point of view, rather than from the ethical point most extreme forms: a rational philosophy of conof view, it is the same. Men who seek to propitiate God duct requires a compromise between the two. by inflicting pains on themselves, or refrain from pleasures to avoid offending him, do so to escape greater ulti
It is admitted that self-happiness is, in a measure, to mate pains, or to get greater ultimate pleasures. If, by be obtained by furthering the happiness of others. May positive or negative suffering here, they expected to it not be true that, conversely, general happiness is to be achieve more suffering hereafter, they would not do as obtained by furthering self-happiness? If the well-being they do. That which they now think duty they would of each unit is to be reached partly through his care for not think duty if it promised eternal misery instead of the well-being of the aggregate, is not the well-being of eternal happiness. Nay, if there be any who believe the aggregate to be reached partly through the care of that human beings were created to be unhappy, and that each unit for himself ? Clearly, our conclusion must be they ought to continue living to display their unhappi- that general happiness is to be achieved mainly through ness for the satisfaction of their Creator, such believers the adequate pursuit of their own happinesses by indiare obliged to use this standard of judgment; for the viduals; while, reciprocally, the happinesses of individpleasure of their diabolical god is the end to be achieved. uals are to be achieved in part by their pursuit of the So that no school can avoid taking for the ultimate mor- general happiness.—(Page 238.) al aim a desirable state of feeling called by whatever name - gratification, enjoyment, happiness. Pleasure
Two final chapters discuss "Absolute and Relasomewhere, at some time, to some being or beings, is an
tive Ethics,” and “The Scope of Ethics," preparing inexpugnable element of the conception. It is as much the way for those specific conclusions and practical a necessary form of moral intuition as space is a neces- applications of principles which will be set forth in sary form of intellectual intuition.-(Page 45.)
future portions of the work, in case, as is most ear
nestly to be hoped, Mr. Spencer finds himself able Having thus defined what is meant by the terms to complete it. These conclusions are implied in good and bad as applied to conduct, and furnished a the present volume in such wise that, as Mr. Spentest by which to judge them, Mr. Spencer proceeds cer says, “definitely to formulate them requires noto the consideration of moral phenomena as phenom- thing beyond logical deduction"; but it is a very ena of evolution ; being, as he says, forced to do mild statement of the truth to say that no one could this by finding that they form a part of the aggregate formulate them so convincingly as Mr. Spencer himof phenomena which evolution has wrought out. “If self. the entire visible universe has been evolved—if the The foregoing summary, it should be added, gives solar system as a whole, the earth as a part of it, the but a very imperfect idea of even the main outlines life in general which the earth bears, as well as that and conclusions of Mr. Spencer's work: it conveys of each individual organism-if the mental phenom- no idea at all of the depth of its thought, the force ena displayed by all creatures, up to the highest, in of its logic, the comprehensive range of its treat