Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 45.djvu/434

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given. Throughout the second part the same order prevails as obtains in the first, and the treatment of problems concerning simple circuits embracing self-induction and resistance is extended to the like, as involve combination circuits and their phenomena. Then such problems are treated as include simple and combination circuits having capacity and resistance, but void of self-induction. Also, such circuits as contain capacity, resistance, and self-induction, together with combined and parallel circuits.

The present is a second edition of the work, on which much care has been bestowed with the view of eliminating errors that unavoidably crept into the first issue. Toward the close of the first part some intensely interesting and instructive paragraphs occur on wave propagation in closed circuits, showing the vanishing attitude of positive and negative waves and the resulting effect, the potential zero at middle point in the cable, and proving that the expression for potential may be simplified if the cable's length should happen to be a multiple of wave lengths. The structure of the volume is admirably suited to students, as any problem needed may be readily found.

Art in Theory: An Introduction to the Study of Comparative Æsthetics. By George Lansing Raymond, L. H. D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 266, Price, $1.75.

The essential idea, if not the sole aim of this volume, is the application of the term representative to all art forms, whether of word or deed; the representativeness to include more than the limitations hitherto placed upon it by certain English art critics, and such as make a further distinction between what they term presentative and representative art. Indeed, the author's effort is entirely legitimate, and scores an advance upon the many imitative if not conventional so-called art criticisms extant. It is invariably refreshing to encounter any original subtlety of sense attaching to a new or augmenting an old idea, and in Prof. Raymond's book the true art of judging "Art in Theory" is not lacking. As the author intimates, works of art are the products which reveal the methods of the artist, whether he desires to represent a thought or a thing—to produce effects of any kind whatsoever. A courageous and justifiable departure on the part of Prof. Raymond is, where he breaks away from the historico-critical method of regarding art and its influence as an æsthetic factor. Duly crediting historic criticism, however, for its inestimable services in all other departments, he goes on to show that as the arts are affected by laws of development, more especially the higher arts, these latter are very often distinctly noc expressive of the spirit of the age. Precisely, and for the unfortunate reason that conventionalism controls them. The historian claims what is not true when he alleges that all art is deserving of study. To the artist as an artist it is not. That art which has attained a high level of excellence is of interest to him, and very often to him alone. Hence, the great artists' methods are not infrequently misinterpreted in their day. The æsthetic power that distinguished the work of an Aristotle, a Confucius, an Angelo, or Shakespeare had not its immediate influence for the now manifest reason that they were moved as much, at least, by the spirit Interpreting within them as by the conventionalities that made demands from without.

Whether we contemplate one or more of the twenty brilliant chapters within this volume, involving either the significance of form in art, classicism and romanticism, the art-impulse, taste, theories concerning beauty, or any one of the many features so pregnant with suggestion we feel assured that readers will acknowledge their introduction to an author not bound by mental servitude.

An Examination of Weismannism. By G. J. Romanes, M. A., LL. D., F. R. S. Chicago: The Open Court Publishing Co. Pp. 221. Price, $1.

The object of this volume is tersely stated in the author's words—to separate the grain of good science from the chaff of bad speculation. This winnowing process, when closely followed, proves to be highly interesting. Dr. Romanes gauges his separator to meet Weismann's great doctrines of the perpetual continuity and unalterable stability of germ-plasm, and when at last, with relentless logic, he has sifted out every extraneous speculation, and holds these theories in his grasp to demolish them, the wise and wary Weismann