Race and Nationality as Factors in American Life

Race and Nationality as Factors in American Life

Race and Nationality as Factors in American Life

Race and Nationality as Factors in American Life

Excerpt

What, another book about race? Are the shelves not already groaning under the weight of innumerable volumes on this unhappy subject? Has the time not come to call a halt, and to eradicate the whole question from the fields of public thought and action?

Yes, there is an almost boundless literature on the subject of race. Some of the books are detailed studies of particular subjects, others are attempts at a comprehensive survey of the major realities. Nevertheless, strange as it may seem, there still remains much to be said. Many writers recognize the fundamental distinction between race and culture, and yet there is a striking dearth of explicit interpretations of this distinction in language easily comprehensible to the layman. This lack the present volume undertakes directly to supply.

Moreover, there is an understandable reluctance of many writers to rush in where academic angels fear to tread. The subject is so complicated, so extensive, and so involved with the minutiae of several branches of learning that they feel only an intellectual superman would be really competent to deal with all phases of it with serene confidence. As a matter of fact, however, this is one of the numerous cases where too much erudition may prove a handicap in grasping the fundamentals which may be clear enough if they are not allowed to be obscured by the limitless mass of technical details. Yet it is in these fundamentals that the ordinary citizen of the world is primarily and directly interested, and it is these fundamentals which this book undertakes to set forth.

Furthermore, there is a tendency in much of the existing literature to miss the truth because of a too highly developed . . .

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