The Past in the Present; What Is Civilization?

The Past in the Present; What Is Civilization?

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1881 edition. Excerpt: ...and the wars waged by them are really for the general good. If a tribe occupies a country rich in game and abounding in edible plants, that tribe fights to hold it against another tribe fighting to get it. The object of each tribe is to secure conditions of life which will make the struggle for existence as light as possible to all within it--which will make it easy for all to obtain food, clothing, and shelter. Selfishness, of course, may be said to show itself on the part of the defender as well as on the part of the aggressor, for the one wishes to keep and the other to gain an advantage; but both act for the general weal of the respective associations. It must not be supposed, however, that the roads travelled by a savage society emerging from its savagery, or passing from a very low to a higher civilization, are essentially different from the roads which highly-civilized societies travel in maintaining their civilizations. 'War does not cease where civilization is ripe, nor are its purposes changed. It may no longer be conducted in what is called a rude and barbarous way. It may even be exalted into a science. Its respectability may be influenced by speaking of a raid as a campaign, and by other such uses of language. Its weapons may show greater skill in contrivance and greater beauty of finish. But evil does not cease to be evil though it be spoken of in mild and polished phrases; and, in one sense, it matters little whether men go into battle with stone axes, bronze swords, or iron guns. Are not the promptings to war still the same, and do not its spirit and its issues remain unchanged? Do savages never fight for their faith and their homes? On the other hand, do men in a state of high civilization never fight for revenge or...show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 102 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 5mm | 195g
  • Rarebooksclub.com
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236846842
  • 9781236846846