Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 23.djvu/133
Vassar, Cornell, Smith, Wellesley—all distinguished by a violation of this fundamental law of progressive education. They are all imitations of the old classical establishments, and their pride is in the perfection of the imitation. It is their boast, if not, indeed, the first condition of their endowment, that the feminine nature has no recognition either in their objects or grades of study.
If there is one female college in the land which is devoted to the cultivation of woman as an intelligent being for the discharge of her responsibilities in domestic life—which qualifies her for it, as the medical college qualifies the physician for his practice—we have not heard of its existence. It is a consequence of the rapid diffusion of education that the traditional methods of instruction are enormously extended, while existing institutions and current educational literature combine to give omnipresent influence and irresistible strength to distinctively masculine thought—that is, thought mainly pertaining to masculine spheres of action. The whole force of these ideas is brought to bear to kindle in woman ambitions of study in all these directions. Thus influenced, she wants to go into politics, law, medicine, art, literature, philanthropy, religion; and, thus influenced, she is drawn away from the home sphere, despises it for its vulgarity, and hates it as a clog and drag upon all her noblest aspirations.
Let it be emphasized, then, that those who oppose the entrance of women into the colleges that have grown up to meet the distinctive requirements of men are not, therefore, opposed to the better or higher education of woman. But that only is "higher education" for woman which perfects her nature, capacities, and requirements. Dr. Dix's view of the import of the home in civilization, its vital and ruling place in the social order, we believe to be profoundly true, and that it must be taken as the starting-point of all substantial improvement and higher cultivation of the female sex. Let women have their own colleges, that shall be neither copies nor appendages of men's colleges, and that shall confer a culture comprehensive, refined, and practical, but with supreme reference to a higher preparation for administering home affairs intelligently, and thus in the most efficient way elevating the standard of social life. When they ask for this education, there will be no opposition, and there will be plenty of means to secure it.
It was inadvertently stated, in noticing "The Gospel of the Stars" last month, that its author, Rev. Joseph A. Seiss, was a clergyman of the Episcopal Church. This turns out to be a mistake, and is resented as an imputation upon that highly respectable body, if we may judge by the number of letters we have received, denying the statement, with varying comments, and declaring that Dr. Seiss belongs to the Lutheran communion, which must be held responsible for him.
In the article "Speculations on the Nature of Matter" ("Popular Science Monthly" for April), the following corrections should be made: On page 798, eighth line from the top, it should read, "namely, the inverse squares of the distance without the sphere, and directly as the distance within it." And, on line 27th of the same page, it should read "directly as the distance."
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