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mination to put it to the test, while it has perhaps given a temporary advantage to the more radical spirit of the “Newer Unionism." It is, therefore, hardly a matter for surprise that the period of business depression following on a space of several years' rapid expansion should be made the occasion for a general effort on the part of the workers to enforce one of their cardinal economic doctrines—viz., that a reduction of wages is merely an aggravation of the evil of trade depression and over-production. Equally is it to be expected that employers should seek relief by discharging hands and lowering the wages bill. The present conflict is, however, more than an effort to readjust wages and hours of work to a depression in trade. It is being made the occasion on both sides to contest the fundamental principles of union recognition and the union shop. We cannot here discuss the grave issues at stake, nor point out the implications involved by a victory of one side or the other. What is of importance is that one should recognise that the issues are of vital moment to our general social development, and that in consequence the decision will come more and more to lie with the general body of citizens rather than with the immediately contending parties alone. Even now it is the force of public opinion which really determines the gradual changes in the interpretation of the common law, a factor of prime importance in modern industrial conflicts. Public opinion, again, by granting or withholding its sympathy makes or mars an effective boycott, supports or crushes a prolonged strike.
It is far from easy, however, for the general public to form an intelligent judgment on the current of affairs involving issues so manifold and complicated as the diverse relations of labor and capital. The chief value of Mr. Gilman's latest book on Industrial Peace will be the statement, dispassionate, and in clear form, of the main facts of the case and of the principles in accordance with which industrial organisation would appear to be moving.
The book takes an Anglo-Saxon point of view, since it draws almost as much upon English as upon American experience, besides making considerable reference to Australian and New Zealand developments. It undertakes a good deal more than a discussion of the special machinery designed to further industrial peace, giving a brief but concise statement of the chief facts incidental to the history and present position of trade unionism.
Mr. Gilman argues that under modern industrial conditions collective bargaining is practically a necessity, and this implies, if the tyranny of either labor or capital is to be avoided, efficient organisation of both employers and employed. The latter, being the first to feel the need, gained a long start in the matter of organisation, but the chief feature of to-day is the rapidity with which employers are following suit. The first machinery elab
. orated as a wage regulator in the interests of industrial peace was the sliding scale. In Chapter V, after some consideration, this method is on the whole condemned and the modern tendency to substitute a minimum wage and a Board of Conciliation is approved.
But if organised capital and labor are to enter into contracts through their representatives, fulfillment of contract with compensation for breach is a corollary. This raises the question of the legal constitution and liability of trade unions. After a full discussion in Chapter VI, Mr. Gilman strongly urges unions to become incorporated.
The ensuing chapters deal at some length with the Aims and Methods of Unions, their conduct of Strikes and Boycotts, and the place borne by the public in relation to their actions.
The remainder of the book is given to a general account of Trade Boards of Conciliation, State Boards of Arbitration, and the methods of legal regulation in force in New Zealand.
Mr. Gilman has naturally to be content with judgments mainly negative. He shows indeed how intolerable is the ever-increasing extent to which idleness, financial loss, and personal violence result from the failure of two great economic factors of production to co-operate harmoniously. Yet all attempts at providing voluntary machinery such as State Boards of Arbitration or Conciliation are proved to do no more than touch a mere fringe of the difficulty. Is the conclusion to be drawn that resort must be had to legal regulation of a compulsory character?
In the case of monopolistic industries Mr. Gilman argues rather in the affirmative. “Just as these businesses are, in fact, diverse from ordinary business so they should be more subject to public control in respect to labor relations.” It might indeed be argued that with well-organised labor and capital throughout any given trade all business was as regards its labor contract in a position of monopoly. This is in fact the crucial point. Will the law, public opinion, and the loyalty or self-interest of unionists allow trade unions permanently to maintain a "union shop," the end for which they are universally striving? Again, will the fight for the "open shop" on the part of employers' associations lead to conflicts so bitter and widespread that the public determine to take the matter from private hands and give them over to a Government department? Mr. Gilman thinks some movement in this latter direction almost certain. In the meantime the elements of the problem are themselves continually suffering modification. Raw unions are in process of education and may adopt a more conservative policy. Employers may cease from "union smashing” and conclude an honorable peace. The social and political ambitions of the wage-earning classes may develop into a strong Socialistic movement, or they may find expression, through increased power in local government, in activities bringing greater stability for the individualist regime. Mr. Gilman, in common with Mr. Graham Brooks and Mr. Bolen, thus concludes that we are confronted with a parting of the ways, but he hesitates to guess along which path our labor organisations will move.
In criticism of this book one might suggest that Mr. Gilman has traveled over so much ground that he has at times become a little sketchy in his treatment. The chapter on Combination of Employees is anything but complete, failing even to mention the American Labor Union, which is likely to play an important part in its rivalry to the American Federation of Labor, as also in its open approval of Socialism. Nothing is said, when dealing with Conciliation, of the English Conciliation Act of 1896. In dealing with the Taff-Vale Judgment it is a mistake to regard Lord Lindley as maintaining that where the funds of a union are not sufficient to pay damages an employer can attach the property of individual members. We doubt whether the statement, "Boycott has no standing before the courts," is correct in view of certain judgments which certainly recognise the boycott as justifiable within limits. In view of the fact that Mr. Gilman says in his preface that he is concerned with analysis rather than history, one might have expected a more critical examination of the premises from which trade unions start, as also of the peculiar features of American as opposed to English unions. Description rather than economic analysis is the strong point of the book.
In a subject so far reaching, however, it is perhaps unfair to expect more than a broad presentation of the material which will enable others to formulate particular problems and to attempt independent judgments. This Mr. Gilman has done in a manner
so interesting as to command the gratitude of all interested in current labor problems.
C. J. HAMILTON. University College, Cardiff.
AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY. By Alexander Bain, LL. D., Professor of
Logic and Rhetoric in the University of Aberdeen. London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1904. Pp. xi, 449.
The Autobiography, as Professor Bain left it, ended with an account of the events of the year 1890; a supplementary chapter, relating to the last thirteen years of his life, has been added by his literary executor, Prof. W. L. Davidson.
The chief feature of interest in this volume is its clear and candid account of the stages in the writer's mental growth, under the circumstances of the time. Curious lights are also thrown on the past history of University Education in Scotland. Specially attractive is the account given in the first two chapters of the way in which the difficulties of the author's early education were overcome, and of the manner in which his native intellectual tendencies began to show themselves. The appalling theology which was taught to him in youth does not seem to have affected his emotions, and only roused in the intellect a rebellious tendency. He was partially emancipated from Calvinism by Dr. Kidd, an Aberdeen preacher famous in his day, for whom the evangelistic "plan of salvation” was supreme. In his twentieth year his attention was directed to Channing, all of whose works he seems to have read with enthusiasm: “The effect was to dissolve the exclusive evangelism of my previous education, and to inspire an ennobling Theism, without regard to special embodiments" (p. 39). He also acquiesced in the "new turn to the work of Christ," which Channing, as a Unitarian, gave. It is perfectly evident, however, that no vestige of permanent interest was aroused in him with respect to what would now be called Liberal or Rational Christianity. It will be said that this was because the mode of thought in question is not one in which any consistent thinker can rest, for it is only a half-way house to scientific Naturalism. As against this easy conclusion, I would venture to affirm that the reason lies deeper, and is found in a certain point of view with regard to human nature which Bain early adopted and by which he stood to the last, and which represents the direct antithesis of the fundamental principle of Rational Chris
tianity. The basal principle of all teaching of the Channing type is the supreme, and, in fact, the infinite worth of human nature, a value which belongs to man intrinsically, and of which no moral descent to infra-bestial depths can divest him. Such a view is axiomatic to theologians of the mental mould of Channing and Martineau, and to philosophers of the mental mould of T. H. Green. To Bain it is merely a prejudice, unconfirmed by experience, and pandering to vanity ("Practical Essays," p. 30), and all idealism which rests on it is visionary.
An absorbing interest in physical science, and subsequently the study of Comte's "Philosophie Positive," caused him to reject all theology, and he found his abiding place in a thorough-going empiricism. He appears never to have taken up any position of public antagonism to the Pharisaic and obscurantist orthodoxy by which he was surrounded, yet his student days were not over before he acquired the reputation of "infidelity.” In 1840 a small knot of class-fellows formed a society meeting weekly for the reading of papers and discussions. Three years later the club entered on an elaborate study of Comte's complete work. This had to be kept in a great measure secret, “though it was impossible to avoid giving indications that in those days were calculated to bring the individual students into trouble” (p. 157). When his friendship with Mill, Grote, and other leaders of English empiricism became known, he was set down as “a Westminster Reviewer,” and the utmost opposition was offered to his academic advancement. It has been justly said that if the appointment at Aberdeen had rested with the Academical authorities, instead of with the Home Office-of which Sir G. C. Lewis was then (1860) the head-it would never have been given to Bain.
Bain's natural aptitudes showed themselves even amid the difficult circumstances of his early education. He evinced unusual ability for the study of mathematics and exact science; his interest in the former was in no respect speculative—it is characteristic that he should almost abandon work at mathematics as soon as he had mastered enough of its higher branches to prepare the way for its application to physical research. Up to the year 1860 he had frequently been engaged in teaching and writing on Natural Philosophy—to employ the term which was then invariably used —and he had qualified himself for a university appointment in this subject. In connection with this natural bent towards precise science, it is interesting to find him speaking of "the very early