Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 8.djvu/281

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267
THE COMPARATIVE PSYCHOLOGY OF MAN.

impressions derived from visible objects; color is a higher abstraction, referring to many such classes of visual impressions; property is a still higher abstraction, referring to classes of impressions received not through the eyes alone, but through other sense-organs. If generalities and abstractions were arranged in the order of their extensiveness and in their grades, tests would be obtained which, applied to the vocabularies of the uncivilized, would yield definite evidence of the intellectual stages reached.

4. Peculiar Aptitudes.—To such specialties of intelligence as mark different degrees of evolution have to be added the minor ones related to modes of life: the kinds and degrees of faculty which have become organized in adaptation to daily habits—skill in the use of weapons, powers of tracking, quick discrimination of individual objects. And under this head may fitly come inquiries concerning some race-peculiarities of the æsthetic class, not at present explicable. While the remains from the Dordogne caves show us that their inhabitants, low as we must suppose them to have been, could represent animals, both by drawing and carving, with some degree of fidelity, there are existing races, probably higher in other respects, who seem scarcely capable of recognizing pictorial representations. Similarly with the musical faculty. Almost or quite wanting in some inferior races, we find it in other races, not of high grade, developed to an unexpected degree. instance the negroes, some of whom are so innately musical that, as I have been told by a missionary among them, the children in native schools, when taught European psalm-tunes, spontaneously sing seconds to them. Whether any causes can be discovered for race-peculiarities of this kind is a question of interest.

5. Specialties of Emotional Nature.—These are worthy of careful study, as being intimately related to social phenomena—to the possibility of social progress, and to the nature of the social structure. Of those to be chiefly noted there are—(a.) Gregariousness or sociality—a trait in the strength of which races differ widely: some, as the Mantras, being almost indifferent to social intercourse; others being unable to dispense with it. Obviously the degree of the desire for the presence of fellow-men affects greatly the formation of social groups, and consequently underlies social progress. (b.) Intolerance of restraint. Men of some inferior types, as the Mapuché, are ungovernable; while those of other types, no higher in grade, not only submit to restraint, but admire the persons exercising it. These contrasted traits have to be observed in connection with social evolution; to the early stages of which they are respectively antagonistic and favorable, (c.) The desire for praise is a trait which, common to all races, high and low, varies considerably in degree. There are quite inferior races, as some of those in the Pacific States, whose members sacrifice without stint to gain the applause which lavish generosity brings; while, elsewhere, applause is sought with less eagerness. Notice should be