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I. SIR GEORGE BIRDWOOD on the Indian Village Potter.

II. SIR GEORge Birdwood on Machinery and Handicraft in


III.-WILLIAM MORRIS on Commercial War.

IV.—E, B. HAVELL on Craftsmen and Culture.

V.-E. B. HAVELL on the Official Suppression of Indian Craftsmanship at the Present Day.

VI. LAFCADIO HEARN on Craft Gods in Japan.

VII.-LAFCADIO HEARN on Craft Guilds in Japan.

VIII. SER MARCO POLO on Craft Guilds in China.

IX.—BHIKKU P. C. Jinavaravamsa on Craftsmen in Siam.

X.-Municipal Institutions in Ancient India.

XI.-Books recommended to the Reader.



R. COOMARASWAMY'S study of the Indian craftsman raises questions of the widest and deepest interest, questions that will not only give consciousness to modern Eastern thought, but help us with some of the most advanced of our Western problems. He tells us of a condition of life among the eastern Aryans that still exists, and he tells it in such a way as to make us feel that there is no reason why it should not go on existing. Why, we ask, has this custom of the centuries, which seems so reasonable in the East, and through which the western Aryan once passed, changed in one part of the world and not in the other, and what are the merits of the change?

If we examine our own Western economic history, more particularly the history of England, we find that the break up of the conditions of English craftsmanship and the English village order, cannot be traced back beyond the industrial revolution of the 18th century, and the enclosure of the common lands that accompanied it. Fundamentally, with us the great change came with the introduction of industrial machinery, and the question which forces

itself upon us, when we look at the picture Dr. Coomaraswamy draws, is: What are the benefits to our culture of the industrial machinery that has acted in this manner?

Trained as we are to measure everything by a mechanical standard, it is difficult for us to see things clearly, to get a correct focus. We are apt to forget that our view is biassed, that we attach a disproportionate value to the productions of machinery, and that a vast number, perhaps 60 per cent., of these productions are not, as is generally supposed, labour-saving, health-giving and serviceable to our general life and culture, but the reverse. "It is questionable," said John Stuart Mill half a century ago, "whether all the laboursaving machinery has yet lightened the day's labour of a single human being "; and the years that have followed his death seem not only to have further borne out his statement, but the people themselves who are being exploited by mechanical conditions are beginning to find it out.

For machinery is only a measure of human force, not an increase of it; and it is questionable whether, owing to the abuse of machinery, the destruction and waste it brings may not equal the gain it yields. Wonderful are the great ships, and the winged words from one side of the globe to the other, wonderful is the consciousness that comes


to us from those things, and from rapid movement, and from our power of destruction, but we may pay even too high a price for the boon of progress. It behoves us to ask, at least, what the price is, and if it be a fair one. Perchance, in our thoughtlessness we have, like the boy in the fairy tale, bartered away the cow for a handful of beans; well, there may be much virtue in the beans, but was not the cow good too? A more reasonable view of life and the progress of Western civilization is making us see that the pitiful slums of our great cities are not a necessary corollary to the great ships; that a nicer, saner regulation of industry will mean that the rapid displacement of human labour, and the misery it brings, may be graduated and softened; that it is not necessary for 30 per cent. of the population to die in pauperism, as is the case in England at present; that it is shortsighted and unwise to paralyze invention and skill and individuality by unregulated machine development, and that our present gauge of the excellence in all these things-their saleability-cannot possibly continue to be a permanent gauge.

It is when Western civilization is brought face to face with the results of other cultures, Eastern cultures, when the stages of its progress are resumed from the points of view of other religions, when Japan, for instance, rejects or chooses what she

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