Essays of William Graham Sumner - Vol. 1

By William Graham Sumner; Albert Galloway Keller et al. | Go to book overview

A PARABLE1

A CERTAIN respectable man had three sons, who grew up, lived, and died in the same city.

The oldest one turned his back at an early age on study. Being eager to earn something at once, he obtained employment driving a grocer's delivery wagon. He never acquired a trade, but was a teamster or driver all his life. In his youth he spent all his spare time with idle companions and devoted his earnings to beer, tobacco, and amusement. At twenty-two he fell in love and married. He had six children who scrambled part way through the public grammar school after a negligent fashion, but cost as much money and more of the teachers' time than if they had been regular and studious. This son never earned over two dollars a day except on election day, when he earned five or more, according to circumstances. He never had ten dollars in his possession over and above his debts.

The second son was the scholar of the family. By energy, perseverance, and self-denial he managed to get a professional education. He married at thirty, being in the receipt of an adequate income from his profession, but not yet having accumulated any capital. He had three children who were all educated in the public grammar and high schools, and his son went to the university, which was a state institution supported by taxation. His wife had strong social ambition, and, although he had early trained himself in habits of frugality and prudence, he found himself forced to enlarge his expendi

____________________
1
Written in the 1880's.

-497-

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Essays of William Graham Sumner - Vol. 1
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • How Sumner Impressed a Graduate Student Who Never Met Him xv
  • Autobiographical Sketch of William Graham Sumner 3
  • The Teacher's Unconscious Success 6
  • Purposes and Consequences 11
  • Discipline 20
  • Integrity in Education 36
  • The Scientific Attitude of Mind 43
  • Religion and the Mores 55
  • The Mores of the Present and the Future 73
  • The American Code 89
  • The Absurd Effort to Make the World Over 91
  • The Abolition of Poverty 107
  • Foreword to "Lynch-Law" 112
  • Witchcraft 114
  • War 136
  • Earth Hunger or the Philosophy of Land Grabbing 174
  • The Bequests of the Nineteenth Century to the Twentieth 208
  • The Family and Social Change 236
  • Modern Marriage 255
  • Is Liberty a Lost Blessing? 285
  • Who is Free? is It the Savage? 290
  • Liberty and Responsibility 310
  • Rights 358
  • Some Natural Rights 363
  • Some Points in the New Social Creed 369
  • An Examination of a Noble Sentiment 374
  • The Banquet of Life 379
  • The Boon of Nature 384
  • Land Monopoly 390
  • A Group of Natural Monopolies 396
  • Another Chapter on Monopoly 400
  • The Family Monopoly 405
  • The Family and Property 410
  • Equality 421
  • The Demand for Men 424
  • The Significance of the Demand for Men 430
  • What the "Social Question" Is 435
  • What Emancipates 442
  • Power and Progress 448
  • Consequences of Increased Social Power 454
  • Who Win by Progress? 460
  • The Forgotten Man 466
  • A Parable 497
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