A Book of Modern Essays


While assembling this collection of modern essays, the editors have tried to hold a single principle steadfastly in mind. They have sought to make the collection a truly representative one: that is to say, one which includes examples of the different kinds of essays by contemporary English and American authors which have won the esteem of American readers. In other words, they have tried to avoid, on the one hand, the bias of their personal preferences in the selection of essays, and on the other hand, the limitation of a special subject matter. This volume is designed to appeal not to specialists in sociology or political science, but to the general reader. Though essays bearing upon the organization and government of society are included in the volume, they form only a portion of its contents, and they are distinctly such as have not been written in the manner of the specialist. The collection, then, cannot be described as either "light" or "heavy" in its tone, as either chiefly political or chiefly sociological in its subject matter. What consistency a collection of this sort should have is to be found, first, in the timeliness of the articles included -- that is to say, in their importance and attractiveness for the contemporary mind -- and secondly, in the fresh and literary flavor of their wording, which guarantees that what is significant shall be found interesting as well. The editors of this collection have, perhaps, been more concerned that the essays be timely than that they possess a literary style. If they do have a fresh and literary flavor, it is that writing of this sort is characteristic of the age we live in.

So there is considerable diversity of subject matter. In fact, as a glance at the title page will show, the essays have been . . .

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • Stuart P. Sherman
  • Olivia Howard Dunbar
  • Calvin Coolidge
  • Frederick Jackson Turner
  • Charles Merz
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1926


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