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But when we talk of "getting on

getting on ” we usually mean getting on in the world. Now what does this imply that is different from success in the sense in which Robinson Crusoe achieves success ?

No doubt we nearly all require, as we work our passage through the workaday world of to-day, to achieve (as essential conditions of progress) greater and greater facility in handling the same sort of problems-matters of food and clothing and housing, of recreation, and health-as those by which Crusoe was confronted. But though such matters still retain their fundamental importance in our lives, we notice that, during the working . hours we spend in shop or factory or on the farm, it is mostly now with the making of other people's clothing or food or enjoyments that we find ourselves kept busy. “Getting on well ” is seldom now conceived as the acquisition of greater facilities and powers in making or doing things for ourselves, even though we may be spending part of our time mending the rents in our own garments or growing vegetables in our own garden. Getting on well means, rather, learning to fit in well with other people at tasks that will satisfy the wants of yet other people of whose existence we have only hearsay knowledge. Only in this way—whether our daily tasks be manual or mental, skilled or unskilled, whether we wish to succeed as inventors or as speculative investors, whether we serve the community as doctors or circus-riders, professional cricketers or commercial travellers, as judges of the supreme court or as people who make the pips to put into the raspberry jam--only in this way can our daily need for daily bread and butter, warmth and shelter, health and fun be reasonably satisfied.

to the most effective acquisition of goods, but as the chief end for which goods would be desired; the mastery of the laws of the working of one's own mind, as a means to the fuller enjoyment of the senses -sight and sound and taste and so forth-whose clamant needs our activities are designed to meet; for the well-trained mind can, of course, gather a harvest of richer satisfactions from the superficially trivial and commonplace than the ill-trained mind can extract from the most elaborate apparatus of civilisation. Moreover, individual wealth is a doubly relative thing. It is not merely (as pointed out above) a thing to be measured by comparison with the wealth of a social environment-it needs also to be brought into comparison with the individual's own ambitions and desires. And so we frequently meet with the paradox of a man finding himself continually worse off as he grows richer. After jogging along contentedly on two hundred a year, he finds himself pinched with three hundred pounds and an enlarged programme of expenditure. At five hundred it becomes a perpetual strain to make ends meet. And if he has the misfortune to see his income expand into four figures, the struggle to keep up appearances may, and often does, drive him into desperate courses that bring red ruin in their train. (“' When we look up we have not enough; when we look down we have more than enough."--Ancient Japanese Proverb.)

The boy who leaves school to serve in a shop and gets from the shopkeeper the means wherewith to purchase elsewhere the longed-for products of other men's activities, gets them because he fits in with the shopkeeper in the amusing but difficult task of satisfying the whims and caprices of yet other people—the customers who enter the shop, purse in hand, professedly in order to buy. The boy who has his name entered on the pay-sheet of a factory is set to perform some simple task over and over and over again-a task that would be quite grotesquely useless if done by itself, and which,


therefore (through his ignorance of the Why ? and Whence ? and Whither ? of it all) remains inhumanly devoid of inspiration, as deadening to all his starving faculties and his fingers itching for healthy mischief as the task of Sisyphus among the dead (“ Up a high hill he heaves a huge round stone" that forever and forever topples over and rattles down again)—the turning of an iron handle, the fastening of labels on empty bottles, the opening up or nailing down of unbeauteous packing-cases. But because he is not a lonely Crusoe in a tropical solitude, but one unit among hundreds of others who are simultaneously engaged on similar but different Sisyphean tasks, what he does fits in with what they do, and so helps to turn out something of value, something that it will please people to have, something perhaps that they feel they cannot do without. And everybody's work in the factory is more valuable, more things and better things are made, because a whole regiment are working together, each making, over and over and over again, nothing but a part of a part of a part of a thing, and so learning to perform his task rapidly, easily, without mistakes or delay. Because of this, the boy who gets twenty shillings a week, for turning a wheel or tending a soulless machine in one factory, is able to buy with his (really princely) 1 wage a heterogeneous selection of the things that are being turned out by the drilled masses at work in other

1 Far too princely in many cases; as we find if we study the problems of boy labour and the future of these lads whose" store of knowledge and discipline acquired at school will be quickly dissipated,” and who “ will soon become unfit either for employment or for further education.” (Report of the Consultative Committee on Continuation Schools, 1909.)

factories—far more curious, fantastic, exhilarating sorts of things than any boy could possibly make, or find for himself, in the pleasantest island where all his work had to be done alone. Nor is it merely the other factory hands working beside him under the same employers, whose labour with him makes his work worth to him this weekly sum (a sum, be it remembered, of food and frolic, books and fireworks, tram-rides and football-matches, and not of uninteresting silver coins-concerning which his chief anxiety would seem to be to rid himself of them as speedily as may be-selling them here and there and everywhere for what they will fetch in the market); but we must also, and equally, take into account the regiments that built the factory, the men who invented and set up the never-to-betoo-much-protested-against machines in it, the men who hewed out from gloomy caverns the coal that keeps the machinery merrily moving, and all the men for thousands of years who have made the things by means of which other things have been made—the railways and steamships that bring the materials that other workers in other continents have been preparing (by the aid of other machinery built in yet other factories) for service in our factory—the vans that carry the goods away, and the roads over which the departing vans are driven.

The workings of modern industry resemble, in short, the circulation of the waters about our revolving planet. From the clouds the rain streams down upon the mountains; the rillets race onwards to join together in foaming rivers; the rivers sweep down to the ocean; the sun sucks up the waters from sea to sky again; and the movement continues in one unbroken cycle without beginning and without end. Each single industry is like the brook, gathering in the tributary rills of raw material that come from haunts of coal and iron-ore, and wool and timber : the stream flows on ; “ with here and there a foamy flake,"-a strike, a lock-out-to form" a silvery waterbreak above the golden gravel,” while of the materials that pass onwards to the world's markets, becoming, as finished products of the one industry, the raw material," of further industries, we may say (without gross sacrilege against the poet, in thus giving to his lyric a more widely human application) that out again they

curve and flow to join the brimming river, for men may come and men may go,”—but this goes on for ever. And it would be impossible for it to continue on its perennial course if the products that it pours into the sea did not return by one route or another, to feed the clouds upon the mountainpeaks that feed in their turn its many sources.

Even our shipwrecked sailor must be, in similar fashion, the beneficiary of the work of all the ages. If he brought ashore with him any timber or clothing, or an axe or a knife, he has brought with him something in the making of which many myriads of workers have taken a share ; and Robinson Crusoe himself must have been fed and clothed and trained by other people's labours when he was still a child or a youth acquiring the powers with which he seeks to satisfy his own needs now that he is alone on the island. Robinson Crusoe's success, if he succeeds in life, is only partly the result of his own efforts ; and when in the evening of his days he rests beside the blue lagoons and watches his Man Friday performing all the tasks that he demands should be

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