Popular Science Monthly/Volume 52/February 1898/The Racial Geography of Europe: Modern Social Problems XIII

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search

THE RACIAL GEOGRAPHY OF EUROPE.

A SOCIOLOGICAL STUDY.

(Lowell Institute Lectures, 1896.)

By WILLIAM Z. RIPLEY, Ph. D.,

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF SOCIOLOGY, MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY; LECTURER IN ANTHROPO-GEOGRAPHY AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY.

XIII—MODERN SOCIAL PROBLEMS.

HAS the intricate racial composition of the population of Europe, which we have been at so much pains to analyze, any significance for the student of social problems? Is there any reason why those who would rightly interpret sociological phenomena should first thoroughly acquaint themselves with the nature of the human stuff of which populations are compounded? Or have our conclusions, thus far, value merely as branches of investigation in pure science, a matter of academic interest alone? Such are the questions awaiting resolution at our hands in this paper of our series.

Let us begin by distinguishing between two equally competent and yet radically opposite explanations for any human phenomenon. One ascribes its origin to heredity, an internal factor; the other makes it a product of outward conditions—that is to say, of environment, social it may be, or physical. Thus the tall stature or blondness of an individual, a social class, or a people, may conceivably be due either to an inherited tendency from preceding generations, or else to the modifying influence of outer circumstances operative during a single lifetime.[1] Considering a single individual alone, a third factor—viz., chance variation—must needs be taken into account; but viewing men by wholesale, in large masses, this matter takes care of itself. Thus an odd drunkard, social reject, or criminal here and there in a community may be nothing more than an aberrant type; but if we discover a goodly proportion of such bad men, we are led to suspect a more fundamental cause. Chance does not work thus by wholesale, steadily in any given direction. Quetelet discovered this fact years ago. Confronted by any such phenomenon existing in appreciable proportions in any society, as revealed by statistical examination, we are therefore at once called upon to decide between our two original explanations. One runs it to earth, on the environmental theory; the other trees it in genealogical hypothesis. In plain English, it becomes a question of outward circumstances or else of inherited proclivities. On the first supposition the phenomenon is of purely modern origin; in the second its roots are imbedded in the past. When the explanation thus becomes retrospective, if the people be in any wise homogeneous in characteristics, customs, or speech, we substitute another shorter word for inheritance. The whole matter simmers down to a decision between environment and race. Our problem in this paper is to adjudge a few such difficulties, whereby we may subserve a double purpose. We may discover what are the distinctive social peculiarities of the three races whose history we have been outlining; and we may form a definite idea of the class of remedies necessary to meet the peculiar needs of each community; for it is quite obvious that social evils due to inherited tendencies require very different treatment from those which are of recent origin, the product of local circumstances.

Purely environmental factors in social phenomena have been all too largely neglected by investigators in the past. At times they rise paramount to all other circumstances. One of the most striking instances of the influence of climate, for example, upon the distribution of population is offered by the present location of the cotton mills of Lancashire along the west coast of England. Why were these mills all set up about the city of Manchester, nearly a century ago? Why were they not placed where plenty of labor was at hand—viz., in the south and west, at that time the most densely populated district in England? The mills were not moved up into Lancashire, far from the crowd, because of the proximity to coal or iron. That may have in part induced them to remain there, when the choice had once been made. But before the days of the steam engine coal had no influence upon the selection of sites. Neither population nor coal being important elements, it is certain that climate was all-powerful in its attractiveness. Here, along the west coast, where the warm, moist Gulf-Stream winds blow steadily landward, is the most humid district in all England. In such an atmosphere the cotton fiber becomes naturally pliant and supple, rendering the spinning of thread a comparatively simple task. So considerable an element was this, that all sorts of devices were adopted for securing permanent benefit from the natural climatic endowment. Building sites were chosen on the western hill slopes, just where the humidity from the rising currents of air was greatest. Oldham and other towns above Manchester were located in accordance with it. Artificial ponds were created just west of the mills, so that the gentle winds blowing over them might become duly dampened. So subtle was this advantage that potted plants in the windows sometimes sufficed to humidify the air to just the right amount. Even to-day, with all the artificial devices for supplanting Nature's aid, we are told by a manufacturer that a change of wind from east to west often makes a difference of seven or eight per cent in the product of a weaving shed.[2] To secure the precious humidity, factories have even at times been built half under ground, emulating the example of the Oriental makers of Dacca muslin, or "woven wind," who work sitting in holes in the ground, so that their delicate fabrics may be rendered supple by the moisture of the earth. Thus, perhaps, acting in this way, has the factor of climate been able to overcome the inertia of the large population once centering in southern England for it has been compelled to transfer itself to the spot marked out by Nature for the industry.

To decide between race and environment as the efficient cause of any social phenomenon is a matter of singular interest at this time. A school of sociological writers, dazzled by the recent brilliant discoveries in European ethnology, show a decided inclination to sink the racial explanation up to the handle in every possible phase of social life in Europe. It must be confessed that there is provocation for it. So persistent have the physical characteristics of the people shown themselves, that it is not surprising to find theories of a corresponding inheritance of mental attributes in great favor. Yet it seems to be high time to call a halt when this "vulgar theory of race," as Cliffe-Leslie termed it, is made sponsor for nearly every conceivable form of social, political, or economic virtues or ills, as the case may be.

This racial school of social philosophers derives much of its data from French sources. For this reason, and also because our anthropological knowledge of that country is more complete than for any other part of Europe, we shall confine our attention primarily to France. Let us refresh our memories of the subject. For this purpose we reproduce herewith a map from a former article, showing the distribution of the head form.[3] This we hold to be the best expression of the racial facts. On this map the dark tints show the localization of the Alpine broad-headed race common to central Europe in the unattractive upland areas of isolation. The light tints at the north, extending down in a broad belt diagonally as far as Limoges and along the coast of Brittany, denote the infusion of the blond, long-headed Teutonic race; while the similar light strip along the southern coast, penetrating up the Rhône Valley, measures the extension of the equally long-headed but brunette Mediterranean stock. The dotted area about Périgueux, in the southwest, we have surely identified as a bit of the prehistoric Cro-Magnon race persisting here in relative purity. These ethnic facts correspond to physical ones; three areas of geographical isolation dark-colored are

PSM V52 D490 Cephalic index of france.png

distinct centers of distribution of the Alpine race. These differ in intensity. The high Alps of Savoy are the most isolated of all; Auvergne, the south central plateau, follows next in order. These two are populated by quite pure Alpine types. Brittany, most accessible of the three, contains only an attenuation of this broad headed race, the Teutons having infiltrated through it quite generally.

The organization of the family is the surest criterion of the stage of social evolution attained by a people. No other phase of human association is so many-sided, so fundamental, so pregnant for the future. For this reason we may properly begin our study by an examination of a phenomenon which directly concerns the stability of the domestic institution—viz., divorce. What are the facts as to its distribution in France? Owing to the influence of the Catholic Church, no actual divorces were allowed by law in that country prior to 1884; but what were known as "séparations de corps," or judicial separations, were regularly granted. From data derived from the best authorities, we have prepared the map on this page, showing its relative frequency in different parts of the country. The dark tints correspond to the areas where it is most common. From this map it appears that marked variations between different districts occur. Paris is at one extreme; Corsica, as always, at the other. Of singular interest to us is the parallel which at once appears between this distribution of divorce and that of head form. The areas of isolation peopled by the Alpine race are characterized by almost complete absence of legal severance of domestic relations between husband and wife. The correspondence appears to be defective in Brittany, but this is largely because of arbitrary departmental boundaries. Savoy and Auvergne certainly show infrequency of such judicial separations on this map, a social characteristic which extends clear to the Pyrenees, in just the same way that the Alpine broad-headedness occupies the same country. A narrow Mediterranean strip seems to

PSM V52 D491 Frequency of divorce in france 1860 1879.png

be marked off from it along the coast. The fertile valley of the Garonne is clearly outlined by increased frequency of separations, in marked contrast to the highlands on either side. This is, of course, partly due to the concentration of population in cities along the river; for divorce is always more frequent in urban than in rural communities. The same consideration may also be important along the Mediterranean coast, for a large part of the population is here aggregated in cities, for peculiar reasons which will appear in due time. Even more strikingly the great basin of the Seine, center of Teutonic racial characteristics, stands sharply marked off from the whole south. This is most important of all.

Do the facts instanced above have any ethnic significance? Do they mean that the Alpine type, as a race, holds more tenaciously than does the Teuton to its family traditions, resenting thereby the interference of the state in its domestic institutions? A foremost statistical authority,[4] Jacques Bertillon, has devoted considerable space to proving that some relation between the two exists. Confronted by the preceding facts, his explanation is this: that the people of the southern departments, inconstant perhaps, and fickle, nevertheless are quickly pacified after a passionate outbreak of any kind. Husband and wife may quarrel, but the estrangement is dissipated before recourse to the law can take place. On the other hand, the Norman or the Champenois peasant, Teutonic by race, cold and reserved, nurses his grievances for a long time; they abide with him, smoldering but persistent. "Words and even blows terminate quarrels quickly in the south; in the north they are settled by the judge." From similar comparisons in other European countries, M. Bertillon draws the final conclusion that the Teutonic race betrays a singular preference for this remedy for domestic ills. It becomes for him an ethnic trait.

Another social phenomenon has been laid at the door of the Teutonic race of northern Europe; one which even more than divorce is directly the concomitant of modern intellectual and economic progress. We refer to suicide. Morselli devotes a chapter of his interesting treatise upon this subject[5] to proving that "the purer the German race—that is to say, the stronger the Germanism (e. g., Teutonism) of a country—the more it reveals in its psychical character an extraordinary propensity to self-destruction." On the other hand, the Slavic peoples seem to him to be relatively immune. These conclusions he draws from detailed comparison of the distribution of suicide in the various countries of western Europe, and it must be confessed that he has collected data for a very plausible case. There can be no doubt that in Germany the phenomenon culminates in frequency for all Europe, and that it tends to disappear in almost direct proportion to the attenuation of the Teutonic racial characteristics elsewhere.

Consider for a moment our map on this page, showing the relative frequency of suicide, with the one on page 472, which we have already described as illustrating the ethnic composition of France. The parallel between the two is almost exact in every detail. There

PSM V52 D493 Intensity of suicide in france 1872 1876.png

are again our three areas of Alpine racial occupation—Savoy, Auvergne, and Brittany—in which suicide falls annually below seventy-five per million inhabitants. There, again, is the Rhône Valley, and the broad, diagonal strip from Paris to Bordeaux, characterized alike by strong infusion of Teutonic traits and relative frequency of the same social phenomenon. The great Seine basin is sharply differentiated from the highlands along the eastern frontier; and even the Mediterranean coast strip, distinct from the Alpine and Auvergnat highlands, is indicated. Inspection of these maps betrays at once either a relation of cause and effect or else an extraordinary coincidence.

Consideration of the distribution of suicide in England lends still greater force to Morselli's generalization. Herewith is a map of its variations. Observe how Wales and Cornwall are set apart from all the rest of the island. Were the map more extensive, we should discover the Scottish Highlands, the third stronghold of the ancient Briton types, characterized by an equal infrequency of suicide. Most remarkable of all is the little light-colored area, just north of London, comprising the counties of Hertfordshire, Bedford, and Huntingdon. This district we were at great pains to emphasize in

PSM V52 D494 Frequency of suicide in England 1872 1876.png

our article upon the British Isles as a region where the physical characteristics of the pre-Teutonic invaders of the island were still represented in comparative purity. We saw that the conquering Teutons entered England from two sides, avoiding London and the impenetrable fen district, and thereby passed over this region, leaving it notably brunette in physical type to this day. Here, again, in nearly every detail of our map would seem to be a corroboration of Morselli's law. For suicide diminishes in direct proportion to the absence of Teutonic intermixture.

Divorce and suicide, which we have just discussed, will serve as examples of the mode of proof adopted for tracing a number of other social phenomena to an ethnic origin. Thus Lapouge attributes the notorious depopulation of large areas in France to the sterility incident upon intermixture between the several racial types of which the population is constituted. This he seeks to prove from the occurrence of a decreasing birth rate in all the open, fertile districts where the Teutonic element has intermingled with the native population.[6] The argument has been advanced a stage further even than this; for purely economic phenomena, such as the distribution of property, tax-paying faculty, and the like, are in the same way ascribed to purely racial peculiarities,[7] Because wealth happens to be concentrated in the fertile areas of Teutonic occupation, it is again assumed that this coincidence demonstrates either a peculiar acquisitive aptitude in this race, or else a superior measure of frugality.

By this time our suspicions are aroused. The argument is too simple. Its conclusions are too far-reaching. We can do better for this race than even its best friends along such lines of proof. With the data at our disposition there is no end to the racial attributes which we might saddle upon our ethnic types. Thus, judging from mere comparison of our map of head form with others of social statistics, it would appear that the Alpine type in its sterile areas of isolation was the land-hungry one described by Zola in his powerful novels. For, roughly speaking, individual landholdings are larger in them on the average than among the Teutonic populations. Peasant proprietorship is more common also; there are fewer tenant farmers. Crime in the two areas assumes a different aspect. We find that among populations of Alpine type in the isolated uplands offenses against the person predominate in the criminal calendar. In the Seine basin, along the Rhône Valley, wherever the Teuton is in evidence, on the other hand, there is less respect for property; so that offenses against the person, such as assault, murder, and rape, give place to embezzlements, burglary, and arson.[8] It might just as well be argued that the Teuton shows a predilection for offenses against property; the native Celt an equal propensity for crimes against the person. Or, again, why does not the Alpine type appear through statistical eyes as endowed with a peculiar aptitude for migration? For the sterile upland areas of his habitation are almost invariably characterized by emigration to the lowlands and to the cities. The persistence of a higher birth rate in these districts makes such relief to an ever-increasing population necessary. Finally, why not apply the same mode of proof to the artistic or literary attributes of population? Turquan[9] has recently mapped the awards made by the Salon, at Paris, according to the place of birth of the artist. We reproduce this directly herewith, not because it proves anything racially, but because it might as well be adduced as proof of the artistic bent of Teutonism in France as many another map above mentioned. For, broadly viewed, the artistic instinct, measured by the canons

Distribution of Awards, Paris, Salon, France per 100,00 population

of the Salon's judges, seems to cling persistently, as Turquan concludes, to the fertile river basins, which are the great centers of Teutonic populations. Nevertheless, we are convinced, despite the geographical coincidence, that it is not the factor of race, but rather of social environment, education, the inspiration of contiguous culture, which is really the responsible agent in the case. That it is not race but rather circumstances which makes for these higher things in civilization, we may, I think, prove, if we but include a number of different countries within the purview of our comparisons. We are fortunate in possessing an artistic census of Italy, not incomparable with that of France.[10] Bellio has distributed the poets, painters, and sculptors of antiquity according to their place of birth, over a map of that country. The effect has been to emphasize the enormous preponderance of artistic genius all through the north, from Tuscany to the Alps. How does this coincide with our previous deduction concerning France? It seems, perhaps, to corroborate the relation of Teutonism to art, until we recall the fact that all northern Italy is overwhelmingly Alpine by race, as compared with the artistically sterile south. Couple with this the fact that in reality Teutonism is a negligible factor in Italy, physically speaking, and that precisely the same ethnic type in France, which is so fecund culturally in Italy, is the one localized wherever art is not; and all doubt as to the predominant cause of the phenomenon is dissipated. We see immediately that the artistic fruitfulness in either case is the concomitant and derivative product of a highly developed center of population. Contact of mind with mind is the real cause of the phenomenon.

This mode of destructive criticism, appeal to the social geography of other countries wherein the ethnic balance of power is differently distributed, may be directed against almost any of the phenomena we have instanced in France as seemingly of racial derivation. In the case either of suicide or divorce, if we turn from France to Italy or Germany, we instantly perceive all sorts of contradictions. The ethnic type which is so immune from propensity to self-destruction or domestic disruption in France, becomes in Italy most prone to either mode of escape from temporary earthly ills. For each phenomenon culminates in frequency in the northern half of the latter country, stronghold of the Alpine race. Nor is there an appreciable infusion of Teutonism, physically speaking, herein, to account for the change of heart. Of course, it might be urged that this merely shows that the Mediterranean race of southern Italy is as much less inclined to the phenomenon than the Alpine race in these respects, as it in turn lags behind the Teuton. For it must be confessed that even in Italy neither divorce nor suicide is so frequent anywhere as in Teutonic northern France. Well, then, turn to Germany. Compare its two halves in these respects again. The northern half of the empire is most purely Teutonic by race; the southern is not distinguishable ethnically, as we have sought to prove, from central France. Bavaria, Baden, Würtemberg are no more Teutonic by race than Auvergne. Do we find differences in suicide, for example, following racial boundaries here? Far from it; for Saxony is its culminating center; and Saxony, as we know, is really half Slavic by heart, as is also eastern Prussia. Suicide should be most frequent in Schleswig-Holstein and Hanover, if racial causes were appreciably operative. The argument, in fact, falls to pieces of its own weight.

A summary view of the class of social phenomena seemingly characteristic of the distinct races in France, if we extend our field of vision to cover all Europe, suggests an explanation for the curious coincidences and parallelisms above noted, which is the exact opposite of the racial one. In every population we may distinguish two modes of increase or evolution, which vary according to economic opportunity for advancement. One community grows from its own loins; children born in it remain there, grow up to maturity, and transmit their mental and physical peculiarities unaltered to the next generation. Such a group of population develops from within, mentally as well as physically, by inheritance. Such is the type of the average rural community. It is conservative in all respects, holding to the past with an unalterable tenacity. Compare with that a community which grows almost entirely by immigration. Stress of competition is severe. There is no time for rearing children; nor is it deemed desirable, for every child is a handicap upon further social advancement. Marriage, even, unless it be deferred until late in life, is an expensive luxury. Population grows, nevertheless; but how? By the steady influx of outsiders. Such is the type known to us in the modern great city. Between these two extremes are all gradations between the progressive and the conservative type of population. To the former are peculiar all those social ills which, as Giddings has rightly urged, are the price paid for such progress. Suicide is a correlative of education; frequency of divorce is an inevitable concomitant of equality of rights between the sexes, and the decline of the religious sanction of patria potestas. A decreasing birth rate almost always attends social advancement. To prevent such a fall in the birth rate, and at the same time to overcome the devastations of disease, is held by many to be the demographic ideal to which all states should aspire. Not postponed marriages, not childless families, not a high proportion of celibates; not, on the other hand, reckless and improvident unions, with a terrific infant mortality as a penalty therefor; but a self-restrained and steady birth rate in which a high percentage survive the perils of infancy. "Civilization is the baptism of the passions. In the cloister neither does the mother die of fever nor the child of croup; but outside the cloister to find both mothers and children, and bring both well through fever and croup—that is civilization."[11] Could we for France apply this last-named criterion of progress? I doubt not we should find it to accord with all the facts we have instanced above. To ascribe them to racial causes is to lose sight of the primary factors in social evolution.

Our theory, then, is this: that most of the social phenomena we have noted as peculiar to the areas occupied by the Alpine type are the necessary outcome, not of racial proclivities, but rather of the geographical and social isolation characteristic of the habitat of this race. The ethnic type is still pure for the very same reason that social phenomena are primitive. We discover, primarily, an influence of environment where others perceive phenomena of ethnic inheritance. In the preceding paragraph we have referred to the apparently disintegrating influence of social evolution upon domestic institutions. Let us for a moment turn to another phase of family life in France, in order to illustrate the complex forces which play upon it to-day. The danger of rashly generalizing from inadequate data will be immediately apparent.

An index of the solidarity of the family is afforded by the degree to which it resents the interference of the state in its domestic affairs. A similar expression of the force of family feeling is often rendered through the tenacity with which it holds itself aloof from the intrusion of strangers not allied by blood or adoption to the other members of the naturally close corporation. In other words, statistics of what we may call "home families," or families occupying an entire dwelling by themselves, give us a clew to the cohesiveness of the institution. It is the question of the boarding house and the tenement versus the home. Any direct comparison in this respect between different parts of the same country is of course entirely worthless, unless we take account of the relative proportions of city population in each; for, always and everywhere, it is in the crowded city that the "home" is superseded by its degenerate prototypes. Fortunately, we possess for France data upon this subject, with the necessary elimination of this cause of error. The accompanying map shows the proportion of families occupying each a whole house to itself, and with the exclusion of all cities of upward of ten thousand inhabitants in every case. In other words, we have before our eyes statistics of the separately existing families among the French peasantry.

Inspection of this map of "home families" shows the widest range of variation. Some parts of France, notably Brittany, exhibit twice the degree of domestic intermixture, so to speak, that prevails in other regions. On the whole, the northwest manifests a weaker opposition to the intrusion of strangers in the family circle than does the south. In some respects this agrees with the testimony of divorce, as to the cohesiveness of the domestic institution. So far as Savoy, Alsace-Lorraine, and Auvergne, our principal areas occupied by the Alpine or Celtic race, are concerned, the parallel with the map of divorce is quite close. The Mediterranean coast strip, nay, even the intrusive zone up the Rhône Valley, are indicated as areas where the family is less cohesive than in the upland areas of isolation. But what shall we say about Brittany? Racially, and in stability of the family as well, it belongs with Savoy

PSM V52 D500 Separate dwelling habitation in french villages 1894.png

and Auvergne as an area of isolation, characterized by comparatively backward social phenomena. Nevertheless, inspection of our map shows it to be the region where such "home intermixture" is exceedingly prevalent. Less than one half the families live under entirely separate roofs, whereas in the other Celtic areas the proportion of independent families is often above ninety per cent.

This peculiar anomaly in the case of Brittany is all the more notable, as this region is one of the most conservative in all France, judged by the character of its social phenomena. Some disturbing factor is evidently at work. It seems to be purely environmental. Surprising as it may appear, this exaggerated "home intermixture" in the Armorican peninsula is apparently to a large degree referable to its geological and climatic peculiarities. Levasseur makes some interesting observations upon this subject.[12] Where peasant houses are closely aggregated or bunched in little villages, it is easy for each family to maintain its separate dwelling, and yet for them all to co-operate with one another in daily labor. On the other hand, the peasant whose house is quite apart from those of his neighbors, placed squarely, perhaps, in the center of his landed property, must of necessity take his farm laborers into his own household. Thus, where population is scattered evenly over a district, not in closely built hamlets, but in widely separated houses, it generally happens that there is considerable "home intermixture." Several families or parts of families live under the same roof. Applying these considerations to Brittany, it seems as if the very low percentage of separate "home families" were a result of just such a broadcast distribution of population. This absence of hamlets in turn is a direct result of geology and climate. In Brittany the rainfall is very heavy; water courses and springs abound on all sides. The soil is at the same time thin, overlying an impervious granite formation. This makes it possible to build houses wherever convenient, without anxiety concerning water supply. The exact opposite of this occurs along the dry Mediterranean coast, where water is a marketable commodity; and in those departments with a permeable chalk soil, where water disappears rapidly in subterranean streams. In these latter cases houses inevitably collect about the water courses and springs, and a high proportion of aggregated population at once is manifested, with all that is thereby implied, socially speaking. One of the first results would be that each family in such a hamlet might occupy its own dwelling exclusively.

Geographical factors have also operated in still another way in Brittany to discourage the growth of closely built villages. This region is so remote from any of the routes of military invasion from the east that no necessity has ever arisen for compacting the population in villages capable of ready defense. Levasseur gives this as an important element in producing the contrasts in the proportion of urban population between the different parts of France. In all of our areas of isolation, the Alps, Auvergne, or Brittany, protected by Nature against intrusion of enemies, the population can safely scatter as it will. In any case, as we have said, the effect upon the family, especially in all that concerns its separate existence under a roof by itself, is very patent.

If the geographical isolation peculiar to the areas occupied by the Alpine race is thus potent in the way we have indicated, why may it not appear in political as well as in social affairs? conservatism should be its motto. To test this we have studied minutely the results of a general election of deputies from all over France, held in 1885. We chose this example for the reason that this important political event was the last supreme effort, the expiring gasp of the monarchical party in France. It is the last time that the conservative element obtained any formidable representation in the Chambers at Paris. From ninety-five deputies standing for a return to the old régime in the preceding Chambers, the number advanced to one hundred and eighty-three; it nearly doubled, in other words. Three million three hundred thousand conservative votes, in a total

PSM V52 D502 Political representation in french elections of 1885.png

suffrage of 7,500,000, was a very respectable, even formidable, showing. This remarkable overturn was due to a fortuitous conjuncture of events. The Ferry republican ministry had been recklessly extravagant; its policy in Tonquin was unpopular. Disturbing local issues were, however, rare, so that the main questions at home were calculated to appeal directly to any intellectual or moral prejudices which happened to be abroad. The Radical party stood for the separation of Church and State; universal suffrage in senatorial and presidential elections was a leading issue. It was an exceptional occasion in every respect for reviving the smoldering fires of conservatism, while at the same time affording opportunity for the fullest expression of progressive ideas, wherever they were present. The election, therefore, was squarely a question of the old versus the new. By analysis of its results, we may perhaps gain an inkling of the temper of the people.

Our map herewith denotes by its lightest shades the areas of most advanced modern ideas where the radicalism of the nineteenth-century type had cut itself loose from all bonds with the past. The opposite extreme, where both politics and religion combined to rejuvenate the conservative party, is tinted black. The intermediate gradation of sentiment is demonstrated by the degrees of light or dark shading. Inspection of this map reveals a certain parallelism with all those that we have studied heretofore. Especially do we note the conservatism of Brittany, Auvergne, and the southwest. It should be said that the apparent conservatism of the most northern departments was due to the local protection-and-free-trade issue, complicated by the Boulanger episode. For this reason these manufacturing centers should be eliminated from our comparison. Savoy and the high Alpine departments also were strongly affected by their proximity to the republican institutions in Switzerland. We must allow for that fact also. A curious contrast, ever persistent in all our ethnic or social maps, is that which is manifested between the coast strip along the Mediterranean and the mountains north of it. A light strip of radicalism extends all along the sea and up the Rhône Valley, setting apart Auvergne from Savoy. Whether this radicalism bears any relation to the high percentage of urban population hereabouts—a product partly of climate, as we have seen—or whether it is an expression of the impulsive temperament of the Mediterranean race, we leave it to others to decide. It is a fact, at all events.

Having made allowance for all the disturbing factors above named, it is roughly true that the areas of Alpine racial occupation manifest a distinct tendency toward conservatism in politics. We incline to the belief that here, again, is the influence of physical circumstances appreciable. Cliffe-Leslie, keenly alive to the weakness of the old dollars-and-cents political economy, may have been right, after all. He concludes: "One may, I think, point with certainty to the difference of environment and conditions of life in the mountains and in the plains, as the source of the superior force of religion, family feeling, and ancient usage in the former. On its moral and social side the contrast between mountain and plain is the contrast between the old world and the new; between the customs, thoughts, and feelings of ancient and modern times." Politics at one extreme, ethnology at the other, have afforded us constant proof of the truth of this generalization. The close interrelation which of necessity exists between every form of human phenomenon in a naturally developed society is a second corollary from the same law. Of profound significance for the sociologist, however, is the fact that to-day we are rapidly passing from such natural organization to a new and highly artificial one. Problems of city life confront us on every side. They are not devoid of ethnic importance; investigation is concentrating upon them. In the final paper of our series we shall proceed to their consideration.

 

  1. In the Political Science Quarterly, New York, x, 1895, pp. 642 et seq., we have discussed this more fully.
  2. For interesting data upon this point consult Transactions of the New England Cotton Manufacturers' Association, No. 57, Pp. 185 et seq.; Edward Atkinson, in the Popular Science Monthly, 1890, pp. 306 et seq.
  3. Popular Science Monthly, vol. li, 1897, pp. 289 seq.
  4. Études démographiques du divorce, Paris, 1883, pp. 42 seq. Turquan, in L'Économiste Français, October 26, 1889, gives parallel results for the first five years of the new divorce law of 1884.
  5. Suicide, in the International Scientific Series, New York, 1882. A. M. Guerry, Statistique Morale, Paris, 1864, shows precisely the same thing.
  6. Revue d'Économie Politique, ix, 1895, pp. 1002-1029; x, 1896, pp. 132-146. This we have already discussed in Publications of the American Statistical Association, v, 1896, pp. 18 et seq.
  7. Corrélations financières de l'indice céphalique, Revue d'Économie Politique, 1897, p. 257. See also The hierarchy of European races, in American Journal of Sociology, Chicago, iii, 1897, pp. 314-328.
  8. For maps showing the distribution of all these, consult A.M. Guerry, Statistique Morale, etc., Paris, 1864. Fletcher, in the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, London, xii, 1849, pp. 151 seq., gives many interesting maps for England, See also Yvernes, in Journal de la Société de statistique, Paris, xxxvi, 1895, pp. 314-325.
  9. La Statistique aux Salons, Revue Politique et Littéraire, Paris, série 4, vi, 1896, pp. 207 seq.
  10. Rapporti fra l'etnografia antica dell' Italia e la sua produttiva artistica, Boll. Soc. geog. Italiana, Roma, xxiii, 1886, pp. 261-279, maps.
  11. From a very suggestive paper, A Measure of Civilization, in Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, London, lx, 1897, pp. 148-161.
  12. Bulletin de l'Institut Internationale de Statistique, iii, 1888, pp. 70 et seq.