326 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY
the way of the outside world. Where the tests of reformation are largely educational tests, the clever scoundrel can easily act his part. Yet no more satisfactory test is proposed in Dr. Wine's argument in favor of the Elmira system. Where industry and good behavior shorten the term of imprisonment, no one can suppose they are a test of reformation. Change in character requires long training ; and Elmira methods can- not be expected to succeed with old offenders. Even young people and adults who have just fallen into crime must receive long sentences for the first offense. To simply inspire a man with a desire for honesty, while he is suffering the penalty for crime, is comparatively easy, but is not reformation. H. B. SIMPSON, Contemporary Review, July 1896.
Beginnings of Town Life in the Middle Ages. A brief account is given of the four leading theories of German scholars accounting for the origin of medieval towns, followed by a critical examination of the recent contributions to the subject by Flach, Varges, Pirenne, and Keutgen. It is concluded that, while many towns must have grown out of villages, those arising from the ruins of the old cities must have been inhabited by men whose occupations were not very different from those of the men of the country manor. There is no evidence of the existence of free, autonomous town- ships in the period of the rise of the towns. The latest investigations into mediaeval industrv render it clear that the craftsman worked at first on the materials of an indi- vidual customer, often at the customer's house. After a time, many craftsmen manu- factured wares for the general market out of their own materials. This produced friction with the merchant guilds which were composed of those who had formerly been the only traders. W. J. ASHLEY, Quarterly Journal of Economics, July 1896.
Social Darwinism. Many of the social applications of Darwinism have been most pernicious. It is held that through restrained competition victory comes to the strongest and most capable, and social progress is maintained. But the economic struggle is essentially different from the biological. While animals struggle for food necessary to their maintenance, the economic struggle is between proprietors and non- proprietors, the end of the former being to secure a quantity of wealth by means of the labor of the latter. This is comparable not to a struggle between independent organ- isms, but to the biological phenomena of parasitism. The parasite which triumphs is feebler than its prey ; and, unlike the struggle between independent organisms, the destruction of the parasite must result from the destruction of its so-called competitor. In the economic struggle the victory is with the proprietors ; but it is not true that the workingmen are the feebler. On the contrary they represent the vital element, the action opini&tre of man against the resistance of matter. Thus the economic conflict is a powerful cause of the retrogression of the species. Admitting that the first proprie- tors were the most capable, the later struggle still assumes the parasitic character because of the purely human device of inheritance of wealth. Degenerates inherit victory with wealth. Among proprietors the most sordid element triumphs ; for fraud rather than talent wins. Likewise the marriage of the rich with the rich modifies sex- ual selection. Among workingmen, the feebler defeat the capable, as when the Chinese displace Americans, or women and children drive men from the factories. So while unrestrained conflict may be the necessary condition of the beginning of the social evolution, it is not possible to apply the theory to the phenomena of the moral world. In that sphere alliance must be substituted for conflict, and the state must intervene in favor of the poor. ACHILLE LORIA, " Darwinisme Social," Revue International de Sociologie, June 1896.
Exclusion of Married Women from the Factory (Continued]. Data are given in continuation of the exhibit of the first article. The following conclusion is reached : The ideal arrangement would be the exclusion from the factory of all married women and widows and divorced women having children under 14 years of age. The attempt to exclude mothers of illegitimate children would be impracticable as it might lead to infanticide. A vast benefit was secured to labor through the exclusion of children under 14 years of age from factories ; but such children now need the care of mothers even more than when they were working. In 1890 there were 130,000 married women