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prove their absurdity, their suicidal folly, till, from the exhaustion of that first fearful deluded by the strange lull of a forty years' scourge. Let us trust that if that war shall peace, he may look on wars as in the same beget its new Tillys and Wallensteins, it category with flagellantisms, witch-manias, shall also beget its new Gustavus Adolphus, and other“ popular delusions," as insanities and many another child of Light; but let us of the past, impossible henceforth, and may not hope that we can stand by, in idle comprophesy, as really wise political economists fort, and that when the overflowing scourge were doing in 1847, that mankind had grown passes by, it shall not reach to us. Shame too sensible to go to war any more. And to us were that our destiny. Shame to us, behold, the peace proves only to be the lull were we to refuse our share in the struggles before the thunder-storm; and one electric of the human race, and to stand by in idle shock sets free forces unsuspected, transcen comfort while the Lord's battles are being dental, supernatural in the deepest sense, fought. Honour to us, if in that day, we which we can no more stop, by shrieks at have chosen for our leaders, as our forefatheir absurdity, from incarnating themselves thers of the sixteenth century did, men who in actual blood, and misery, and horror, than see the work which God would have them we can control the madman in his paroxysm, do, and have hearts and heads to do it. by telling him that he is a madman. And Honour to us, if we spend this transient lull, so the fair vision of the student is buried as our forefathers of the sixteenth century once more in rack and hail, and driving did, in setting our house in order, in redressstorm; and, like Daniel of old, when rejoic ing every grievance, reforming every abuse, ing over the coming restoration of his peo- knitting the hearts of the British nation tople, he sees beyond the victory some darker gether by practical care and help between struggle still, and lets his notes of triumph class and class, man and man, governor and die away into a wail,—“And the end thereof governed, that we may bequeath to our shall be with a flood; and to the end of the children, as Henry the Eighth's men did to war desolations are determined.”
theirs, a British national life, so united and It is as impossible as it would be unwise, whole-hearted, so clear in purpose, and sturdy to conceal from ourselves the fact, that all in execution, so trained to know the right the Continental pations look upon our pre- side at the first glance, and take it, that they sent peace as but transitory, momentary ; shall look back with love and honour upon and on the Crimean war as but the prologue us, their fathers, determined to carry out, to a fearful drama-all the more fearful be even to the death, the method which we have cause none knows its purpose, its plot, which bequeathed to them. Then, if God will that character will be assumed by any given the powers of evil, physical and spiritual, actor, and, least of all, the dénouement of the should combine against this land, as they did whole. All that they feel and know is, that in the days of good Queen Bess, we shall every thing which has happened since 1848 not have lived in vain; for those who, as in has exasperated, not calmed, the electric ten- Queen Bess's days, thought to yoke for their sion of the European atmosphere; that a rot- own use a labouring ox, will find, as then, tenness, rapidly growing intolerable alike "to that they have roused a lion from his den. God and to the enemies of God," has eaten into the vitals of Continental life; that their rulers know neither where they are, nor whither they are going, and only pray that things may last out their time : all notes which one would interpret as proving the Art. III.--Les Ouvriers Européens, Etudes sur Continent to be already ripe for subjection les Travaux, la Vie Domestique, et la Condito some one devouring race of conquerors, tion Morale des Populations ouvriers de were there not a ray of hope in an expecta l’Europe, précédées d'un Exposée de la Métion, even more painful to our human pity, thode d' Observation. Par M. F. LE PLAY, which is held by some of the wisest among Ingénieur en Chef des Mines, Professeur de the Germans; namely, that the coming war Métallurgie à l'Ecole des Mines de Paris. will fast resolve into no struggle between Paris : Imprimé par l'Autorisation de bankrupt monarchs, and their respective ar l’Empereur à l'Imprimerie Impériale. mies, but a war between nations themselves, 1855. an internecine war of opinions and of creeds. There are wise Germans now who prophesy, One of the most difficult and pressing queswith sacred tears, a second "thirty years' tions of the present day is how to ameliorate war” with all its frantic horrors, for their the condition of the working classes, without hapless country, which has found two cen- so disturbing the present order of things that turies too short a time wherein to recover the violence of the remedy would be worse
than the original evil; without merely shift- less real because not intrinsic. From this ing the burden of injustice, and substituting point of view, therefore, it is a work deservone class-wrong for another. The numerous ing critical study and impartial judgment; theories now flooding the world, from the for the subject is one of such vital importimperfect and fragmentary science of the so- ance to society, that any theory whatever, called political economists, to the impossible sanctioned by the executive power of a great philanthropy of more amiable dreamers, in- country, claims attention and demands indicate a wide-spread feeling of the need of vestigation. reformation in this quarter of society. But The spirit in which M. Le Play begins his it has been only of late years that the evil task seems to us incorrect. Writing of men, complained of has taken a strict class defini- he has written as if classifying dried leaves tion. In Rousseau's time, and others', it in an herbarium, or marking chippings of was the poor man generically that was to be stone in a cabinet. In attempting to be riprotected—it was humanity at large, not gidly scientific, he is philosophically impermerely an isolated wrong that was to be re- fect. Passions, instincts, the disturbing informed. Now the question has narrowed fluences of individual and national tempers, itself to more positive limits : it is the ad- of various physical organizations, of different justment of labour and capital that involves educational circumstances, in a word, all that all the rest. For the reformation of matters complexity which makes humanity so diffias they stand each man has a different theory cult to legislate for and to govern, M. Le according to his temperament. The politi- Play passes over without remark. His work cal economist, who cares for law rather than is arithmetical, not humanitarian; his object, for humanity, proposes entire self-control, the establishment of a certain theory of po the annihilation of all natural instincts, and litical economy, not the discovery of such profound acquiescence in the present state of laws as would be best for the needs and naThings, as the labourer's only means of sal- ture of man. And in this distinction between vation and advancement; the socialist, who theory and fact, political economy and human venerates humanity as God's greatest earthly nature, lies his weak and faulty point: for creation, and who doubts of the sacredness the science of political economy will never of an opposing social code, would destroy be true nor perfect while divorced from the the last to give the first free play; the liberal necessities of human nature, and refusing to politician would enlarge the representative recognise their right—while assuming that basis, and cure all by wider powers of self- men and women are mere machines to be government; the believer in the Divine in. wound up and set going according to a given stitution of social castes, would throw back diagram, and not centres of vital forces with the workman to the same dependent condi- an inherent direction that nothing can des. tion as that in which he lived in the old feu- troy, and only long.continued pressure modal times, and think he had secured his well. dify. Their passions, their instincts, their being when he had deprived him of his li- very weaknesses are stronger than the most berty ;--the most deceiving and plausible, perfect theory; and those who would disbut least dangerous, of all the false lights cover the laws of a true science, and apply hung out to show the way men are not to go. eternal rules--who would really solve our Contravening, as this theory does, the grand present social difficulties, and not merely and divine law of progress, politicians could touch them by quackery-must acknowledge not long impose it on the world; any more the force, and the right to recognition, of than they could arrest the course of germi- these passions, and must legislate for and nation, and force back the bursting seed into with them, not against them. Man's theoits former state of torpor and undevelop- ries have no power to crush God's laws into ment. The thing next best to truth is the a new shape; and humanity, as it is, must impossible lie. But this is the theory, the be the point round which the practical phiperfection of which M. F. Le Play has writ- losophy of the world must revolve. ten his massive folio to prove and uphold. M. Le Play tells us, that for twenty years Judged only by its own merits, his work," he has been devoted to metallurgic stuambitious in design and pompous in execu- dies," and “ from his position well able to tion, does not deserve much serious atten- study the condition of the manufacturing potion : faulty in facts, false in reasoning, and pulation of France." The nature of his proretrograde in principle, its sole importance fession led him even into Asia, as well as is the manner of its publication. Though of into every country in Europe, and "enabled little value in itself, yet as the expression of him to observe the different types of workthe French Emperor's opinions, at least by men formed under the influence of varying sanction and adoption, it takes an import social organizations." M. Le Comte A. de ance, and will have an influence, none the Saint Léger accompanied him in most of
his travels; at one time going alone to Ger. Le Play has done in setting forth one family many and some distant French provinces : as the portrait of the community. The rebut recently both travelled together to Rus- semblance at best can be but general. And sia and Siberia, to study more particularly in that case what need is there for such the three types found there, of nomadic, minute data as he has given ?-what need emigrant, and stationary peasants. One to give the inventory of the wardrobe and broad result of these studies is, that the of the furniture, down to a wooden settle North, East, and Centre of Europe, are found and a torn duster, when this inventory could to be in a state of complete social quiescence; hold good but for that one particular houseit is only in the West and South that society hold? Such affectation of accuracy looks is restless, dissatisfied, confused, and seeking like charlatanism ; it is putting manner in to solve the problem of its inequality. In the room of matter, and confusing the judgthose countries where the patriarchal régime ment by pattial lights. On the questions, is still maintained, men live quietly and con- then, of accurate method, of observation, of tentedly. They know nothing beyond their approximation, and average, the learned enown sphere, they desire nothing beyond their gineer has decidedly missed his way. present possessions; they are types of family Three conditions or régimes of labour are union and domestic wellbeing. But arts, given as the three systems under which all manufactures, civilisation, and science, are European engagements are ranked. The dead among them, and their peace is the first is that of a permanent forced engagepeace of ignorance and sleep. They are es ments,” or slavery and serfdom; which throw sentially behind the present age; they are all responsibility on the master, and leave what we were in our old feudal times, before the workmen no free-will or independence; the middle class had struggled into existence, as in Russia, the Sclavonic provinces of and when society was composed but of the Turkey, and in Central Europe. Our auprivileged and the oppressed – when the thor takes pains to impress on his readers workman was the villaiy and the peasant was that this system is highly acceptable to the the serf, and when the seigneur stood between peasants and ouvriers themselves, and is law and justice and held back both from his advantageous to their best interests. The people. It is useful, therefore, to know ex- second régime is that of a voluntary permaactly how they live, and what is their con- nent engagements," a state implying a cerdition, that we may understand our own past tain theoretic development of individual lib. and justly appreciate the present.
erty, and in principle recognising the fundaM. Le Play proposes in this work to give mental truth of European society-the right an abstract of the condition of the whole of each man to his own time and labour. working classes of Europe ; of their moral. This régime is to be met with chiefly in ity, intellectual cultivation, religion, earn- Austria and Hungary,--some of its forms ings, expenditure, amusements, furniture, and being close guilds, hereditary apprenticeship, wardrobes; taking one family in each dis- and the system of patronage. The third is trict touched on, as the type of the whole. that of voluntary temporary engagement," This method of investigation cannot be as in England, France, Belgium, in three considered as scientific, in spite of the par- Swiss Cantons, in Norway, and in many aphernalia of ciphers, columns, variously Spanish provinces. In these last countries sized type, and learned nomenclature, which the change from a more primitive and feugive such an imposing air to these “ mono- dal system has been gradually introduced graphies.” Every one knows how widely without any shock to national prejudices, families differ even in the same district, un- and without disturbing the order of society. der the same social and hygienic circum- In France we all know through what a bapstances, and working at the same trade. tism of blood the people passed to their John Smith, the drunken, dissolute weaver, freedom, and the same baptism seems to be with a slatternly wife and eight or ten un- preparing elsewhere. This is the system cared-for children, is no fair representative which the learned engineer deprecates as of John Smith the sober weaver, with an most disastrous both in its moral and social industrious wife and a well-educated family. consequences. As, for instance, in the flucTheir moral and intellectual culture, their tuating population which gathers round the social well-being, and their domestic happi- coal and mining districts, where the engageness, will be no more alike than one of M. ment between employers and workmen is Le Play's own Bachkirs is like his Sheffield entirely temporary, and involves no moral cutler. And if the drunken Smith be taken obligation on either side—where the workas the type of the community to which he man takes up the life and habits of the earbelongs, all the sober Smiths will be of liest type, the nomad; but without the simcourse misrepresented. But this is what M. plicity, frugality, contentedness, or virtuous
principles of his original--and where the means in a way certainly more desirable employer thinks only of how he may best than charities or even benefit societies. But obtain the largest amount of labour for the where, as in Central and Northern Europe, smallest amount of wages, and troubles him- these agricultural privileges are carried into self in no wise with the moral or social the heart of the manufacturing districts, well-being of his men. Certainly this state social characteristics elsewhere so distinct of things, as at present existing, is essentially become mixed and confused; and the subevil; but the remedy is not to be found in ject of work and wages, always difficult, the state through which we have already becomes still more so by the gradual abopassed, and which we have left behind us. lition of the old boundary lines. The two Society must go onward to get clear; it can ranks are no longer kept clear; agriculture never go back to a former condition which it mingles with manufacture; but the political left because it was insufficient for its needs. economist overlooks this peculiarity of cen
After specifying the various conditions of tral Europe when writing of these two labour, M. Le Play proceeds to offer a régimes of labour, and so produces imper. definition of the ouvrier as follows :- fect and unsound results. All this M. Le
Play sets forth as preface to the announce“Les personnes exerçant un travail manuel, ment that he alone has appreciated this nice pant plus ou moins de la condition de propriétaire the confidence of the people whom he adautre que le service personnel du maître, partici: distinction, and has alone been able to gain d'existence la rétribution accordée à ce travail.” dressed ; that his facts, therefore, are correct,
and his conclusions valid. Starting from this definition he then classes Workmen must live by masters: be those the workmen themselves under seven heads, masters associations where they all labour _"1. Les ouvriers domestiques : 2. Les jour. for a common end, or men hiring them to naliers ; 3. Les tâcherons ; 4. Les ouvriers execute tasks for their customers; or be ayant en outre les qualités de tenanciers ; 5. they customers directly employing them, De chefs de métier; 6. Ou de propriétaires ; without any kind of intervention. In other enfin, 7. Les propriétaires travaillant princi- words, labour must find a market. Let us palement pour leur propre compte." Of examine the question of associations. There these, of course, the nearer the grade reaches are two kinds of associations-corporate and to independence, the better it is for the work communistic. Corporations or guilds are man. The workman who, in the quality of societies where all the members are bound proprietor or chef de métier, works without together by special and collective interests, the intervention of any third person between which, by their very nature, are restrictive himself and his customers, is better off and and exclusive. Communities are associain a higher position every way, than he who tions where all work for a common fund and works for hire for the profit of another. with common means, and where the spirit is The piece-worker, again, is better off than essentially helpful and fraternal; but also, the day-labourer, if the former be a skilled as well as with guilds, where the first law is worker; and the tenant living in a rented the abolition of individual free-will. Corpohouse is better off than the house servant rations are protective, communities helpful ; living in his master's house. In everything corporations are like armed bands in the the nearer a man approaches to liberty, the midst of enemies, communities like generous right of self-control, and independence of ex- friends in a foreign land; and corporations istence, the higher he stands socially, and and communities alike can only exist with in general the nobler he is morally, for the sacrifice of free-will and independence. neither want of liberty, nor work for hire, But corporations have now almost entirely allows the best qualities of a man room for subsided into mere benefit societies, investgrowth. But according to M. Le Play there ed with a few unimportant political rights, is a greater difference between the classes of which preserve their members from the ouvriers than between the terms of labour. misery attendant on illness, dearth, or want
In the manufacturing districts the family of work, but which retain none of those of the workman is supported by wages only, ancient characteristics which made them at without the addition of anything like privi- one time important elements of the State. leges, or as M. Le Play calls them, subven- As for communities, the experiment has tions. In the agricultural districts, on the been so seldom tried under anything like contrary, the right to certain aids--such as fair or equal circumstances, that, save in house-rent free, free pasturage, the use of one or two exceptional cases, we can scarcecommon lands, wood, game, fish, wild fruits, ly speak of the result. The primitive type &c.,
-gives a certain character of proprietor--the patriarchal system is the real root ship to the workman, while adding to his of communism ; but between this primitive
type existing only with profound ignorance, souvent dans la suite de cet ouvrage, les meilleurs total absence of commerce, and the want of constitutions sociales sont celles qui conservent, all energy and ambition for improvement, en les pondérant avec sagesse, tous les grands as in the nomadic races and the highest mande, jusqe'à ce jour, la stabilité ou le progrès ; ideal of unselfishness, Christian charity, re- celles, en particulier, qui concilient
, avec un définement, and universal civilisation, there veloppement considérable de la liberté pour tous does not seem to be much chance for a com- les individus, la plus grande somme possible de munistic success. It is not an experiment l'antorité paternelle, likely to succeed in a transitional state of society. And as the society of the present From the early type of patriarchal comday is eminently and undoubtedly transition- munism to the intermediate stage of corpoal, as we are passing from the old form into rations, society has gradually passed onward new and untried paths—it is not possible that to the most perfect exercise of free-will, an experiment requiring harmony in the sur-halting occasionally at the system of masrounding relations, and perfect accord in its tership or patronage to which we alluded own organization should succeed. Society above. follows certain rules, and passes through cer. In Sweden, Central Europe, and Western tain phases—as surely as chemical substances Germany, the system of patronage is in the undergo certain transformations, and as heay- fullest. force. Without any formal bond, enly bodies obey fixed but progressive laws. servants and workmen remain with their And communism, even when voluntary, masters all their lives; not from affection, does not come in as one of the intermediate nor yet only from the force of habit, but phases. In Russia, and among the nomads most commonly from pecuniary obligation. und half-savages subject to her, among the In many districts, the ouvriers are bound to 5 paysans, fondeurs, and forgerons” of Swe- remain with their master until they repay den, Westphalia, and the Bergamasque coun- the loan with which he generally establishes try-until lately even in the agricultural them in life; and this can never be done becountry of the Bas Nivernais in France, fore quite mature age; consequently, not the communistic principle is in full force. before the stationary and unadventurous But carried to the utmost extent of tyranny: age. This is the system of voluntary perno longer a voluntary, helpful, generous manent engagements,” which, according to association, but the forced yoke-fellowship Le Play, has come the nearest to solve the of slaves, the prevention of individual de "great question of the day—the conciliation velopment, the annihilation of personal free- of individual liberty with security of existdom, the destruction of hope, energy, ambi- ence.” It is also another form of the patrition, and improvement. It is not the com- archal system ; abandoning the communism munism which western philanthropists have of the Nomadic tribes, and preserving only imagined for the workman, nor that which their parental authority, and the abrogation could possibly accord with the present con- of individual liberty. Our author asserts ditions of commerce and science. It is the that this system is both advantageous to the primitive régime as seen in half-barbarous best interests of the working classes, and countries, and, as such, stands quite apart much loved by all who live under it; but from the only communism possible to the when we come to speak of the abrok, we Western world. Even M. Le Play con- shall shew that as many, as can, escape from fesses that civilisation cannot borrow so the very régime which, according to this much of the forms of barbarism ; fond as reasoning, they regard as their happiness he is of looking back, not forward, and of and salvation. seeking of the past the answers to the diffi The third method is, when a workman, culties of the present. He speaks thus of preserving the character of " chef de méthe communistic principle in its two distinct tier” or “ propriétaire,” works directly for phases of nomadic communism and of forced his customers without the aid or intervenengagements, both of which spring from the tion of a third party. This system was “ family organization of society:"
much followed in the western countries es
pecially in England and Scotland, until the "En résumé, le système des nomades et celui erection of machinery changed the whole des engagements forcés lient partout en Europe à face of the working world. It still, howune puissante organisation de la famille ; dans les ever, obtains in rural districts and small deux antres systèmes sociaux, le cercle de la fa- country towns, where large manufacturing mille et l'autorité de son chef s'amoindrissent en général en mesure que les individus jouissent plus companies have not yet established them complètement de leur libre arbitre. Il y a cepen-selves, and where consumption and produce dant, sous ce rapport, des limites qui ne peuvent are both limited and isolated. It gives de être impunément dépassées : on le constatera cidedly the most dignity to the workman,