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Memories and Studies   By: (1842-1910)

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E text prepared by Al Haines

MEMORIES AND STUDIES

by

WILLIAM JAMES

Longmans, Green, and Co. Fourth Avenue and 30th Street, New York London, Bombay, and Calcutta 1911

Copyright, 1911, by Henry James Jr. All Rights Reserved

PREFATORY NOTE

Professor William James formed the intention shortly before his death of republishing a number of popular addresses and essays under the title which this book now bears; but unfortunately he found no opportunity to attend to any detail of the book himself, or to leave definite instructions for others. I believe, however, that I have departed in no substantial degree from my father's idea, except perhaps by including two or three short pieces which were first addressed to special occasions or audiences and which now seem clearly worthy of republication in their original form, although he might not have been willing to reprint them himself without the recastings to which he was ever most attentive when preparing for new readers. Everything in this volume has already appeared in print in magazines or otherwise, and definite acknowledgements are hereinafter made in the appropriate places. Comparison with the original texts will disclose slight variations in a few passages, and it is therefore proper to explain that in these passages the present text follows emendations of the original which have survived in the author's own handwriting.

HENRY JAMES, JR.

CONTENTS

I. LOUIS AGASSIZ II. ADDRESS AT THE EMERSON CENTENARY IN CONCORD III. ROBERT GOULD SHAW IV. FRANCIS BOOTT V. THOMAS DAVIDSON: A KNIGHT ERRANT OF THE INTELLECTUAL LIFE VI. HERBERT SPENCER'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY VII. FREDERICK MYERS' SERVICES TO PSYCHOLOGY VIII. FINAL IMPRESSIONS OF A PSYCHICAL RESEARCHER IX. ON SOME MENTAL EFFECTS OF THE EARTHQUAKE X. THE ENERGIES OF MEN XI. THE MORAL EQUIVALENT OF WAR XII. REMARKS AT THE PEACE BANQUET XIII. THE SOCIAL VALUE OF THE COLLEGE BRED XIV. THE UNIVERSITY AND THE INDIVIDUAL THE PH. D. OCTOPUS THE TRUE HARVARD STANFORD'S IDEAL DESTINY XV. A PLURALISTIC MYSTIC

I

LOUIS AGASSIZ[1]

It would be unnatural to have such an assemblage as this meet in the Museum and Faculty Room of this University and yet have no public word spoken in honor of a name which must be silently present to the minds of all our visitors.

At some near future day, it is to be hoped some one of you who is well acquainted with Agassiz's scientific career will discourse here concerning it, I could not now, even if I would, speak to you of that of which you have far more intimate knowledge than I. On this social occasion it has seemed that what Agassiz stood for in the way of character and influence is the more fitting thing to commemorate, and to that agreeable task I have been called. He made an impression that was unrivalled. He left a sort of popular myth the Agassiz legend, as one might say behind him in the air about us; and life comes kindlier to all of us, we get more recognition from the world, because we call ourselves naturalists, and that was the class to which he also belonged.

The secret of such an extraordinarily effective influence lay in the equally extraordinary mixture of the animal and social gifts, the intellectual powers, and the desires and passions of the man. From his boyhood, he looked on the world as if it and he were made for each other, and on the vast diversity of living things as if he were there with authority to take mental possession of them all. His habit of collecting began in childhood, and during his long life knew no bounds save those that separate the things of Nature from those of human art. Already in his student years, in spite of the most stringent poverty, his whole scheme of existence was that of one predestined to greatness, who takes that fact for granted, and stands forth immediately as a scientific leader of men.

His passion for knowing living things was combined with a rapidity of observation, and a capacity to recognize them again and remember everything about them, which all his life it seemed an easy triumph and delight for him to exercise, and which never allowed him to waste a moment in doubts about the commensurability of his powers with his tasks... Continue reading book >>




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