were. He was willing now, despite his precocious starring

Not afraid of rape networklibrary2023-12-07 05:29:33 81481 37518

All of these books, history and fiction, drop into the American mind during its early springtime the seed of antagonism, establish in fact an anti-English "complex." It is as pretty a case of complex on the wholesale as could well be found by either historian or psychologist. It is not so violent as the complex which has been planted in the German people by forty years of very adroitly and carefully planned training: they were taught to distrust and hate everybody and to consider themselves so superior to anybody that their sacred duty as they saw it in 1914 was to enslave the world in order to force upon the world the priceless benefits of their Kultur. Under the shock of war that complex dilated into a form of real hysteria or insanity. Our anti-English com- plex is fortunately milder than that; but none the less does it savor slightly, as any nerve specialist or psychological doctor would tell you---it savors slightly of hysteria, that hundreds of thousands of American men and women of every grade of education and ignorance should automatically exclaim whenever the right button is pressed, "England is a land-grabber," and "What has England done in the War?"

were. He was willing now, despite his precocious starring

The word complex has been in our dictionary for a long while. This familiar adjective has been made by certain scientific people into a noun, and for brevity and convenience employed to denote something that almost all of us harbor in some form or other. These complexes, these lumps of ideas or impressions that match each other, that are of the same pattern, and that are also invariably tinctured with either a pleasurable or painful emotion, lie buried in our minds, unthought-of but alive, and lurk always ready to set up a ferment, whenever some new thing from outside that matches them enters the mind and hence starts them off. The "suppressed complex" I need not describe, as our English complex is by no means suppressed. Known to us all, probably, is the political complex. Year after year we have been excited about elections and candidates and policies, preferring one party to the other. If this preference has been very marked, or even violent, you know how disinclined we are to give credit to the other party for any act or policy, no matter how excellent in itself, which, had our own party been its sponsor, we should have been heart and soul for. You know how easily we forget the good deeds of the opposite party and how easily we remember its bad deeds. That's a good simple ordinary example of a complex. Its workings can be discerned in the experience of us all. In our present discussion it is very much to the point.

were. He was willing now, despite his precocious starring

Established in the soft young minds of our school boys and girls by a series of reiterated statements about the tyranny and hostility of England towards us in the Revolution, statements which they have to remember and master by study from day to day, tinctured by the anxiety about the examination ahead, when the students must know them or fail, these incidents of school work being also tinctured by another emotion, that of patriotism, enthusiasm for Washington, for the Declaration of Independence, for Valley Forge--thus established in the regular way of all complexes, this anti-English complex is fed and watered by what we learn of the War of 1812, by what we learn of the Civil War of 1861, and by many lesser events in our history thus far. And just as a Republican will admit nothing good of a Democrat and a Democrat nothing good of a Republican because of the political complex, so does the great--the vast--majority of Americans automatically and easily remember everything against England and forget everything in her favor. Just try it any day you like. Ask any average American you are sitting next to in a train what he knows about England; and if he does remember anything and can tell it to you, it will be unfavorable nine times in ten. The mere word "England" starts his complex off, and out comes every fact it has seized that matches his school-implanted prejudice, just as it has rejected every fact that does not match it. There is absolutely no other way to explain the American habit of speaking ill of England and well of France. Several times in the past, France has been flagrantly hostile to us. But there was Lafayette, there was Rochambeau, and the great service France did us then against England. Hence from our school histories we have a pro-French complex. Under its workings we automatically remember every good turn France has done us and automatically forget the evil turns. Again try the experiment yourself. How many Americans do you think that you will find who can recall, or who even know when you recall to them the insolent and meddlesome Citizen Genet, envoy of the French Republic, and how Washington requested his recall? Or the French privateers that a little later, about 1797-98, preyed upon our commerce? And the hatred of France which many Americans felt and expressed at that time? How many remember that the King of France, directly our Revolution was over, was more hostile to us than England?

were. He was willing now, despite his precocious starring

Jackstraws is a game which most of us have played in our youth. You empty on a table a box of miniature toy rakes, shovels, picks, axes, all sorts of tools and implements. These lie under each other and above each other in intricate confusion, not unlike cross timber in a western forest, only instead of being logs, they are about two inches long and very light. The players sit round the table and with little hooks try in turn to lift one jackstraw out of the heap, without moving any of the others. You go on until you do move one of the others, and this loses you your turn. European diplomacy at any moment of any year reminds you, if you inspect it closely, of a game of jackstraws. Every sort and shape of intrigue is in the general heap and tangle, and the jealous nations sit round, each trying to lift out its own jackstraw. Luckily for us, we have not often been involved in these games of jackstraw hitherto; unluckily for us, we must be henceforth involved. If we kept out, our luck would be still worse.

Immediately after our Revolution, there was one of these heaps of intrigue, in which we were concerned. This was at the time of the negotiations leading to the Treaty of Paris, to which I made reference at the close of the last section. This was in 1783. Twenty years later, in 1803, occurred the heap of jackstraws that led to the Louisiana Purchase. Twenty years later, in 1823, occurred the heap of jackstraws from which emerged the Monroe Doctrine. Each of these dates, dotted along through our early decades, marks a very important crisis in our history. It is well that they should be grouped together, because together they disclose, so to speak, a coherent pattern. This coherent pattern is England's attitude towards ourselves. It is to be perceived, faintly yet distinctly, in 1783, and it grows clearer and ever more clear until in 1898, in the game of jackstraws played when we declared war upon Spain, the pattern is so clear that it could not be mistaken by any one who was not willfully blinded by an anti-English complex. This pattern represents a preference on England's part for ourselves to other nations. I do not ask you to think England's reason for this preference is that she has loved us so much; that she has loved others so much less--there is her reason. She has loved herself better than anybody. So must every nation. So does every nation.

Let me briefly speak of the first game of jackstraws, played at Paris in 1783. Our Revolution was over. The terms of peace had to be drawn. Franklin, Jay, Adams, and Laurens were our negotiators. The various important points were acknowledgment of our independence, settlement of boundaries, freedom of fishing in the neighborhood of the Canadian coast. We had agreed to reach no settlement with England separately from France and Spain. They were our recent friends. England, our recent enemy, sent Richard Oswald as her peace commissioner. This private gentleman had placed his fortune at our disposal during the war, and was Franklin's friend. Lord Shelburne wrote Franklin that if this was not satisfactory, to say so, and name any one he preferred. But Oswald was satisfactory; and David Hartley, another friend of Franklin's and also a sympathizer with our Revolution, was added; and in these circumstances and by these men the Treaty was made. To France we broke our promise to reach no separate agreement with England. We negotiated directly with the British, and the Articles were signed without consultation with the French Government. When Vergennes, the French Minister, saw the terms, he remarked in disgust that England would seem to have bought a peace rather than made one. By the treaty we got the Northwest Territory and the basin of the Ohio River to the Mississippi. Our recent friend, the French King, was much opposed to our having so much territory. It was our recent enemy, England, who agreed that we should have it. This was the result of that game of jackstraws.

Let us remember several things: in our Revolution, France had befriended us, not because she loved us so much, but because she loved England so little. In the Treaty of Paris, England stood with us, not because she loved us so much, but because she loved France so little. We must cherish no illusions. Every nation must love itself more than it loves its neighbor. Nevertheless, in this pattern of England's policy in 1783, where she takes her stand with us and against other nations, there is a deep significance. Our notions of law, our notions of life, our notions of religion, our notions of liberty, our notions of what a man should be and what a woman should be, are so much more akin to her notions than to those of any other nation, that they draw her toward us rather than toward any other nation. That is the lesson of the first game of jackstraws.

Next comes 1803. Upon the Louisiana Purchase, I have already touched; but not upon its diplomatic side. In those years the European game of diplomacy was truly portentous. Bonaparte had appeared, and Bonaparte was the storm centre. From the heap of jackstraws I shall lift out only that which directly concerns us and our acquisition of that enormous territory, then called Louisiana. Bonaparte had dreamed and planned an empire over here. Certain vicissitudes disenchanted him. A plan to invade England also helped to deflect his mind from establishing an outpost of his empire upon our continent. For us he had no love. Our principles were democratic, he was a colossal autocrat. He called us "the reign of chatter," and he would have liked dearly to put out our light. Addington was then the British Prime Minister. Robert R. Livingston was our minister in Paris. In the history of Henry Adams, in Volume II at pages 52 and 53, you may find more concerning Bonaparte's dislike of the United States. You may also find that Talleyrand expressed the view that socially and economically England and America were one and indivisible. In Volume I of the same history, at page 439, you will see the mention which Pichon made to Talleyrand of the overtures which England was incessantly making to us. At some time during all this, rumor got abroad of Bonaparte's projects regarding Louisiana. In the second volume of Henry Adams, at pages 23 and 24, you will find Addington remarking to our minister to Great Britain, Rufus King, that it would not do to let Bonaparte establish himself in Louisiana. Addington very plainly hints that Great Britain would back us in any such event. This backing of us by Great Britain found very cordial acceptance in the mind of Thomas Jefferson. A year before the Louisiana Purchase was consummated, and when the threat of Bonaparte was in the air, Thomas Jefferson wrote to Livingston, on April 18, 1802, that "the day France takes possession of New Orleans, we must marry ourselves to the British fleet and nation." In one of his many memoranda to Talleyrand, Livingston alludes to the British fleet. He also points out that France may by taking a certain course estrange the United States for ever and bind it closely to France's great enemy. This particular address to Talleyrand is dated February 1, 1803, and may be found in the Annals of Congress, 1802-1803, at pages 1078 to 1083. I quote a sentence: "The critical moment has arrived which rivets the connexion of the United States to France, or binds a young and growing people for ages hereafter to her mortal and inveterate enemy." After this, hints follow concerning the relative maritime power of France and Great Britain. Livingston suggests that if Great Britain invade Louisiana, who can oppose her? Once more he refers to Great Britain's superior fleet. This interesting address concludes with the following exordium to France: "She will cheaply purchase the esteem of men and the favor of Heaven by the surrender of a distant wilderness, which can neither add to her wealth nor to her strength." This, as you will perceive, is quite a pointed remark. Throughout the Louisiana diplomacy, and negotiations to which this diplomacy led, Livingston's would seem to be the master American mind and prophetic vision. But I must keep to my jackstraws. On April 17, 1803, Bonaparte's brother, Lucien, reports a conversation held with him by Bonaparte. What purposes, what oscillations, may have been going on deep in Bonaparte's secret mind, no one can tell. We may guess that he did not relinquish his plan about Louisiana definitely for some time after the thought had dawned upon him that it would be better if he did relinquish it. But unless he was lying to his brother Lucien on April 17, 1803, we get no mere glimpse, but a perfectly clear sight of what he had come finally to think. It was certainly worth while, he said to Lucien, to sell when you could what you were certain to lose; "for the English... are aching for a chance to capture it.... Our navy, so inferior to our neighbor's across the Channel, will always cause our colonies to be exposed to great risks.... As to the sea, my dear fellow, you must know that there we have to lower the flag.... The English navy is, and long will be, too dominant."



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