Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 66.djvu/9

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THE

 

POPULAR SCIENCE

 

MONTHLY



NOVEMBER, 1904.



THE INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS OF ARTS AND SCIENCE.
By WM. HARPER DAVIS,

Lehigh University.

THE first International Congress of Arts and Science has passed honorably into history. What may have been a philosopher's dream is now also a fact accomplished. Not that with the successful completion of the program the living influence of the congress has ceased. Rather, indeed, is it certain to continue and possibly to yield increase beyond foretelling. This is really implied in the statement that the undertaking was a success, as must appear to all who are cognizant of the unique purpose and the correspondingly definite plan of the whole. With this our readers may be assumed to be in a general way familiar. In this article some attempt will be made to sketch, unhappily in an all too fragmentary fashion, the actual operation and course of the congress and to indicate, in a manner necessarily inadequate, a few tentative impressions as to its outcome and probable value. No single man, least of all one who had the pleasure of attending the congress in blissful ignorance of the reporter's task which was in store for him, can hope to do justice to a program so vast and so varied as was that which filled the week from the nineteenth to the twenty-fifth of September last at St. Louis.

The great exposition now in progress is notable not only for its material illustration of the arts and industries of the world, but chiefly because in its conception the place of first importance has been given to education. This means the explicit acknowledgment of the sovereignty of mind in human progress to a degree unprecedented in similar undertakings. It was therefore peculiarly fitting that the management should make a special effort to assemble a congress of the world's leaders in the acquisition, elaboration and application of knowledge, as a worthy spiritual capstone to the magnificent material edifice