Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 39.djvu/716

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

drainage-work inaugurated by the Survey and successfully carried on, is furnished by Mr. George W. Howell.

Geological Observations on the Volcanic Islands and Parts of South America visited during the Voyage of H. M. S. Beagle. By Charles Darwin, M. A., F. R. S. Third edition. With Maps and Illustrations. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 648. Price, $2.50.

Geological changes take place with such extreme slowness that a faithful account of the geology of any place written in Darwin's early life is nearly as accurate now as on the day it was published, and for the purposes of geological history even more valuable. That Darwin's observations are a faithful description of the localities that he visited, no one who knows the extreme thoroughness and conscientiousness of the man will think of questioning. Another fact that has operated to preserve the usefulness of these observations is that they relate to parts of the world that have not been so much studied as Europe and North America, so that the author was able to say in the preface to his second edition, "I am not aware that much could be corrected or added from observations subsequently made." Some of his opinions, however, have not stood the test of time so well as his facts, and were abandoned by Darwin himself in later life. The first half of the volume contains the descriptions of the volcanic islands visited by the Beagle, with a few observations made in Australia, New Zealand, and at the Cape of Good Hope. These islands include St. Jago in the Cape Verd group, Fernando de Noronha, Ascension, St. Helena, and the Galapagos Archipelago. There are several cuts in the text, and a folded map of the island of Ascension is inserted. An appendix comprises descriptions of fossil shells from several of the above-named islands, by G. B. Sowerby, and descriptions of corals from Tasmania, by W. Lonsdale.

The second division of the volume treats of the geology of South America, and almost exclusively of that part of the continent south of the Tropic of Capricorn.

The chapters, except in a few cases, are arranged according to the age of the deposits that they treat of. Considerable space is given to evidences of elevation of the eastern and western coasts of South America, while the formations of the pampas and the structure of the Cordillera are among the subjects of chapters. An appendix contains descriptions of Tertiary shells, by G. B. Sowerby, and of Secondary shells, by Prof. E. Forbes. Several folded plates illustrate the specimens described, and there is a map of southern South America.

The Relation of Labor to the Law of Today. By Dr. Lujo Brentano. Translated from the German by Porter Sherman. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 305. Price, $1.50.

This work was prepared by the author in answer to a request from his publishers for a new edition of his "Labor Guilds Past and Present." He thought that something a little different—a popular-scientific treatment of the labor question from the point of view of the labor-guilds—would be of greater interest. It is, according to the translator, "as to quantity of matter an abridgment, as to extent of ground covered, an enlargement" of the original work. The occasion for reproducing the book here is explained by the assumption that the classical political economy of England, prevalent also in this country, has been built up almost exclusively on the side of capital and the capitalist, and is full of theories and assumptions. Writers who have worked upon the structure have been mainly bankers, capitalists, or doctrinaire professors. "It is owing to a theory, an exploded theory, the wages-fund theory, that the relations of labor have not been scientifically discussed by our economists, and the treatment of the labor question has been left mainly to unscientific, more or less socialistic, even revolutionary, writers." As taught thus it discloses an antagonism between theory and practice, and is charged with furnishing ammunition to socialism. "Recognizing this antagonism, the political economists of Germany have set themselves to work to correct and to supplement, in this and other particulars, the classical, hypothetical, abstract political economy." Further than this, by a critical examination of the principles furnished by the English economists, upon which the socialists have built their superstructure, "the German economists have been able to modify, correct, and supplement them, and have