BASIC ENGLISH Compiled by Julia E. Johnson
Discussion Favorable to Basic English
OUR LANGUAGE REDUCED TO 850 WORDS 2
According to a speaker at the Universal Esperanto Congress held in London in August 1938, the world language invented by Dr. Zamenhoff in 1887 is written and spoken by more than a million people of all nationalities
There are over 4,000 books and about 100 magazines printed in Esperanto, while it is recognized by chambers of commerce and forms part of the syllabus of commercial schools in most countries. Some governments, notably those of Sweden and Spain, subsidize Esperanto and teach it in their elementary schools.
But it would be idle to claim that Esperanto has leveled, or is ever likely to level, the Tower of Babel; for, despite its diffusion, Dr. Zamenhoff's international language has made little actual world progress. After half a century's international propaganda and conferences, there are only a million practicing Esperantists in a world population of 1,850,000,000.
One million practicing Esperantists merely means that 500,-000 people can make themselves understood to 500,000 "foreigners," provided that they can find each other scattered amongst the nations of the globe. In other words, Esperanto has failed lamentably to solve the problem of linking mankind with a common language, and its penetration is considerably less than the international ramifications of many large business concerns.
Moreover, Esperanto is only one of nearly 200 schemes to establish a universal language. Volapuk, the first international language ever actively practiced, was founded only seven years before Esperanto, and 50 per cent of its vocabulary was based upon English.
One of the most ingenious efforts to provide mankind with a common method of expression is the sign language invented by Sir Richard Paget and demonstrated by him at a recent meeting of the Royal Institution. The vocabulary has been founded
upon the existing sign language used by deaf-mutes, which is already so universally understood that a Chinese deaf-mute can converse with an English deaf-mute, though both are ignorant of each other's national language.
Sir Richard has worked out a system of gestures which he claims will express any ideas in ordinary speech. According to the inventor, a child or adult could learn and remember a hundred of the appropriate signs in an hour, and, if the sign vocabulary were taught in all countries, communication between people ignorant of each other's languages would be simple.
That Sir Richard Paget's sign language is easy to learn was convincingly demonstrated during the inventor's address to the Royal Institution, when, after fifteen minutes' instruction, the members of the audience were able to "read" a ninety-word poem "recited" to them in signs.
Unfortunately, all "manufactured" languages, whether they be audible or visual, suffer from the grave defect that, having no idiom and being without historical or sentimental ties, they can never become the medium of a literature which would be appreciated in common by the diverse races and nationalities of mankind.
Admittedly, Esperanto, Volapuk, Ido, and all other spoken "manufactured" languages have a natural basis to the extent that their vocabularies are extracted and blended from normal languages. Nevertheless, the mixtures remain artificial, and will never be anything but code vocabularies for the expression of facts, and not lingual vehicles of literary emotion.
Yet the fact that 1,500 different languages are at present spoken throughout the world suggests that a universal language would confer inestimable benefit upon mankind. As matters now stand, international conferences cannot be held without relays of interpreters; scientific research is frequently delayed because workers in some particular field of investigation cannot get translations of foreign contributions to the subject in hand; industries such as the making of talking pictures and gramophone records spend millions of pounds on extra versions of their productions to cater for different languages; and the majority of
people who holiday abroad miss all real contact with the places they visit because they understand no language but their own.
During the Middle Ages, Latin was the common language of all civilized nations, and a man of normal education had little difficulty in making himself understood amongst his social equals in foreign countries. Latin was not then the dead language it has become today; books written in it were universally circulated, and there were few people of even elementary education who did not know at least a few words of its vocabulary.
Bearing these facts in mind, would there not be a better chance of achieving a lingua franca suitable to the needs of the modern world if we concentrated upon the diffusion of an existing language rather than upon propagating an artificial tongue like Esperanto, which, judging by its present progress, appeals to only one person in every 1,850?
Of the existing languages, the most commonly spoken, and, therefore, the only ones that need be considered as candidates for universality, are French, Spanish, Italian, German and English. German, Italian and French may be rejected because of geographical limits, while Spanish, though enjoying a vast geographical domain, must also be ruled out as it is not sufficiently important politically, commercially, scientifically, or industrially.
That leaves us with English; the natural or governmental language of more than 600,000,000 people, or nearly a third of the total population of the world. Apart from the population of the United States of America, over 50,000,000 foreigners speak English; and this penetration of our mother tongue has been due, not to the direct teaching of our nationals, but to the willing adoption of English by other countries.
Indeed, few people in this country realize the ever-increasing importance which English is achieving throughout the world. It is a compulsory subject in the schools of at least a dozen European countries, while it is already a lingua franca throughout the East.
Britons bear an active share in world trade, and, as foreign business men are obviously assisted in their transactions if they can speak English reasonably well, there is a growing appreciation
abroad of the value of the English language for commercial purposes. Consequently, it is scarcely probable that any large number of foreigners would be inclined to learn an artificial vocabulary like Esperanto in preference to a language such as English, and it is very questionable whether more than 20,000 people could conduct even an elementary discussion in Esperanto.
English is an easy language to learn, having none of the grammatical and gender complications that make the majority of European tongues so difficult to master. Moreover, English contains so many words derived from other languages, both modern and ancient, that it already possesses for many foreigners an almost international character.
Practically the only trouble experienced by foreigners learning English is the enormous vocabulary, some 500,000 words, and certain inconsistencies in spelling which make correct pronunciation difficult. But a slight, and long overdue, reform of our spelling would dispose of the latter problem, while our vocabulary could easily be reduced to the bare number of words necessary to express the maximum number of ideas in a universalized English.
One of the most successful and simple systems of turning English into an international code language without its ceasing to be English is the Basic English evolved by Mr. C. K. Ogden, Editor of the International Library of Psychology, Philosophy and Scientific Method. . . .
It is estimated that most children have a standard English vocabulary of some 2,000 words even before they go to school, while the average adult requires about four times that number to read a daily newspaper with ease. Therefore, it seems at first thought the height of absurdity to suggest that anyone could write or speak English intelligently with a vocabulary restricted to 850 words.
But it must be remembered that the very richness of the English language renders a large proportion of its words redundant, so that we find perhaps a score of words which, broadly speaking, all have the same meaning. The repetitive nature of so many of the words used in standard English is well illustrated by Mr. Ogden’s Basic Dictionary (Kegan Paul, Trubner, Trench
& Co., 2c. 64.), wherein the founder of Basic English has listed
7,500 of the words most commonly employed in standard English and shown that they can be provided with their equivalents
in the Basic vocabulary of 850 words....
The Basic Dictionary is confined to words employed in nontechnical speech and writing, and is primarily intended to provide translators with Basic equivalents for most of the ordinary words of standard English. Constituting a practical application of the principles of word economy, the Basic Dictionary provides the foundation for similar dictionaries covering the essentials of other languages, and so demonstrates the possibilities of Basic as an international medium of speech and writing.
Provided with a translation of The Basic Words (Kegan Paul, 2s. 6d.), which gives a full account of the 850 selected words with their use, and a basic dictionary appropriate to his language, a Chinese or Japanese should be able to acquire a knowledge of Basic English just as easily as would a Frenchman, German or Englishman.
Learning a foreign language generally requires years of intense study, but a person of normal intelligence and application should, irrespective of nationality, have little difficulty in being able to speak and write Basic within two or three months. Not only is the vocabulary limited to 850 words, but also, there being no verbs to conjugate, the learner is spared the tedious business of mastering the finer shades of meaning that prove such a stumbling block when putting one language into another.
Employing the Basic vocabulary supplemented by a few such internationalized words as ‘hotel,” ”restaurant,” “bar,” etc., persons ignorant of each other’s native language should be able to hold a conversation on any subject outside the province of technicians; and for the technician there are short supplementary lists of Basic words appropriate to his particular field of activity.
It would be a mistake to assume from Basic’s small vocabulary that Mr. Ogden’s simplified English is merely a list of words limiting literary expression and putting our language into a verbal strait waistcoat. Such is far from being the case, and
there is already in existence a considerable Basic literature of translations and original works.
Any suspicion that Basic outrages our lingual heritage is discounted by the Basic versions of Leonard Frank’s Carl and Anna, Poe’s Gold Bug, Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, Lamb’s Tales from Shakespeare, Faraday’s History of a Candle, Sewell’s Black Beauty, Stevenson’s The Bottle Imp, Shaw’s Arms and the Man, and Swift’s Guiliver in Lilliput.
Admittedly, Basic cannot reproduce in its entirety the distinctive brilliance of a Shaw or the finer subtleties of a satirist like Swift. But place these translations in the hands of a foreigner reading Basic, and it is doubtful if he would suspect that the texts had been simplified.
Ordinary translation from one language into another attempts to maintain a consistent level so as to produce an accurate copy of the original. On the other hand, translation from a foreign language or standard English into Basic is concerned not so much with an exact reproduction of literary style as a restatement at a lower level in simpler terms.
Few students with only a knowledge of Basic in addition to their native tongue would count the loss of the finer points of a foreigner writer’s literary style too high a cost if Basic texts provided for them the key to open the world’s treasure house of books.
Without Basic, it takes three or four years to obtain a working knowledge of English; in the case of Eastern peoples and others not in close touch with European thought and learning the period necessary to acquire English is generally much longer. Mr. Ogden claims that, if every country devoted to Basic lessons 1 per cent of, the school timetables of children under 14, all nations would within a very short time have a second or international language.
In a country like India, the adoption of Basic English would confer incalculable benefits upon some of the most backward races in the world. Considerable interest attaches, therefore, to the Times of India campaign for the propagation of Basic throughout the Peninsula.
Although English is the official language of India, it is not common to the mass of the native population of 360,000,000, who speak one or other of some 120 dialects. The advantages to be gained by ending this confusion of tongues are obvious; millions of people, whose knowledge of the outside world seldom extends beyond their villages, would have access to written matter describing all that is worth while in art, science, literature and industrial progress, so encouraging an immeasurably better understanding than now exists between India and Great Britain.
Already the Times of India campaign has resulted in Basic English being taught in hundreds of schools in India, Ceylon and Burma, where its efficacy has been recognized by the authorities. No one denies that it will be a tremendous task to solve India’s language problem by spreading the use of Basic English throughout the whole Indian Empire, but, with the means at its disposal, and encouraged by the progress made since the initiation of its campaign, the Times of India is confident that ultimately millions of Indians will be added to the English-reading public.
Basic teaching in schools, not only in the British Empire, but also in foreign countries, has resulted in the publication of numerous books suitable for use by young readers having a knowledge of the 850 Basic words.
Messrs. Nelson, for example, publish at a shilling each a series of elementary Basic reading books under the general title of “Our Changing Times.” Offering a wider range of interests than is usual in juvenile publications, the books describe concisely but simply, mankind’s various achievements in science, invention and exploration. Amongst recent titles are : Wires Round the Earth, a brief history of the electric telegraph by Velma Stout; How Men Have Kept Their Records, the story of writing and printing from the earliest times by Michael Lipman; and To Far Cathay, an account of Marco Polo’s travels by William Bagley.
With the object of demonstrating that everything that anyone wishes to speak or write may be expressed as clearly and explicitly in Basic as in standard English, Miss Leonota Lockhart
has prepared a representative collection of translations under the title of Everyday Basic (Kegan Paul, 2s. 6d.). Miss Lockhart’s book includes Basic versions of such diverse subjects as Hans Andersen’s “The King’s New Clothing,” “The Woman of Ephesus,” from the Satyricon of Petronius, the text of the Kellogg Pact, a dispatch from the United States Government to Great Britain dealing with naval limitation, an extract from H. G. Wells’ Shape of Things to Come, and various items of news from the daily press. The present writer has read most of Miss Lockhart’s examples in standard English, and can vouch for the fact that in their Basic versions they lose little by translation. Indeed, the Basic rendering of the Kellogg Pact is, if anything, an improvement upon the original which, in common with most state and legal instruments, is not distinguished by simplicity of wording.
As has already been stated, the Basic vocabulary of 850 words is merely intended for non-technical speaking and writing. So, in order that Basic English may perform what should become one of its most useful functions, the universal diffusion of scientific reports, treatises and textbooks in a language that will be understood by scientists of all nations, it has been necessary to supplement Basic’s 850 general words with short vocabularies appropriate to various technical subjects.
Fortunately, the task of compiling Basic vocabularies of scientific words has been simplified by the fact that much of the language used in general science is already international to the extent that, with certain modifications, it is understood by scientific workers in the British Empire, the United States of America, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Spain and Portugal.
Then, there are numerous scientific words and terms identical in spelling and meaning throughout the world. Amongst these are a great many formulae, including the chemical analyses of substances, the Latin terms for genus and species in zoology, and the metric weights and measures.
Paradoxically enough, technical language has been further internationalized by the existing Babel of tongues; the languages spoken in the East and in many of the lesser European countries lack the most elementary native scientific vocabularies, and therefore
possess only a very modest scientific literature. Consequently, students in these countries must preface their scientific studies by mastering one of the major European languages in which science already enjoys a certain degree of universality.
It has been found possible to limit to fifty words each the supplementary Basic vocabularies applicable to such sciences as zoology and economic theory.
A good idea of the problems involved and the achievements accomplished in the task of translating scientific works into Basic is provided by Living Things (Nelson, 1s. 9d.), a collection of essays on evolution by the late W. N. Sullivan. Basic is used throughout the book, and the names of chemical substances have their internationally known formulae printed after them, while the names of animals and plants are given with their international Latin names.
Basic English offers great possibilities as the lingua franca of international commercial relations, but, as Mr. Ogden points out in his introduction to Mr. S. L. Salzedo’s Basic for Business (Kegan Paul, 2s. 6d.), world business has so many different branches that it has been found impracticable to compile a single fifty-word vocabulary for business on the lines of those provided for the sciences. Accordingly, it is necessary to provide separate wordlists for banking, stockbroking, insurance, commercial law, and so forth.
On the other hand, such specialized branches of international business form only a small proportion of the total volume of the world’s commercial intercourse. Mr. Salzedo, who has had over thirty years’ experience of translating into English business letters of all descriptions, written in practically every European language, gives it as his opinion that at least 90 per cent of the letters exchanged between firms internationally are concerned solely with buying and selling goods.
Acting upon that assumption, it was decided to compile a Basic Business List of fifty words most commonly used in trading transactions. The words are, of course, English, and many of them, such as “capital,” “net,” “per cent,” “plus,” “warrant,” “guarantee,” “consul,” “premium” and so on, are already internationally current even as far afield as Japan.
Basic for Business gives a selection of sixty actual letters and agreements put into Basic with the assistance of the Basic business wordlist, the selection covering the widest possible range of international trading correspondence. Incidentally, writers in Basic being confined to the use of essential words, one of the most striking results of the examples quoted by Mr. Salzedo is the elimination of the tedious business jargon which so frequently involves the construction of lengthy and tortuous sentences.
Perhaps the greatest promise of Basic English achieving a world currency lies in the fact that Dr. Ogden, unlike the inventors of many previous efforts to establish a universal language, does not claim the impossible and suggest that Basic English should eventually abolish any desire or necessity to acquire foreign languages. He fully realizes the code language's restriction upon literary expression, and writes in his introduction to Everyday Basic:
Basic English is designed, in the first place for the needs of radio and talking pictures, for journeying to other countries, and (with the help of the special lists) for science and trade. It is necessary to make it quite clear that a second language like Basic is not to be judged by its power to give pleasure in itself. Those who are interested in the feeling value of words will do well, whatever is offered to them in the way of an international language, to get a good knowledge of one or more languages outside their mother tongue. put, for the tens of millions who are not specially interested in words, and who make use of language in every way but as an instrument of art, the less time wasted, even in schools, on learning unnecessary tricks the better.
Dr. I. A. Richards, whose Basic in Teaching (Kegan Paul, 2s. 6d.), stresses the value of Basic in solving the differences in outlook separating Western and Eastern civilizations, is equally emphatic that Basic English cannot reproduce national poetry and the more ornate and elaborate emotive prose.
Finally, Basic English holds the promise of world peace by its ability to foster and extend international culture, and is thereby capable of social and political repercussions of even greater gain than the benefits it might confer upon world trade. International friendship can be founded only upon mutual understanding between the average people of the nations, and that
understanding becomes possible only through the exchange of thoughts expressed in some universal lingual medium such as Basic English. Once people have the means of speaking and writing to foreigners in a common tongue, they will cease to look upon foreigners as potential enemies.
Statesmen may make diplomatic pacts inspired by the most pacific objects; but abiding friendship between nations depends upon the personal knowledge people gain of each other from a common lingual intercourse, rather than upon agreements between governments whose spokesmen must rely upon interpreters.
'By David Le Roi. B.Sc., Journalist who has held appointments an Dominion and foreign newspapers. Journal of Education (London). 71:678-82. September 1939.
A WORLD LANGUAGE 3
Among the suggestions yet made for an international or second common language, Basic English has a special place for two reasons. One is that it is not a made-up language, like Ido or Novial, but is a part of a living natural language, part of normal everyday English in fact. The other is that it is such a very small language, small enough to be printed on one side of a bit of business notepaper. And yet in this. Basic, it is possible to say almost anything.
This is a talk in Basic English. You may be interested in hearing what this little pocket language of 850 English words is like. I have been using Basic English so far and I will keep to it all through. Normally, there is no point at all in talking Basic when those who are hearing you have the rest of English. A man talking Basic then is a bit like a dog walking on its front legs only. Strange and maybe interesting for a minute or two but there is no doubt he would get on better on four legs. So it is only to give you an example of Basic at work that I am using it tonight.
As a rule, we give surprisingly little attention to the new conditions we will probably be facing tomorrow. Maybe we are certain that nothing will come of any attempt to see into the future. And yet--the minute the new conditions come into
existence, it will seem very clear that things had to be so. This sort of future was a necessary outcome of that sort of past, and anyone with even half an eye for causes and effects might have seen what was coming.
This is being wise after the event which is not hard. But why didn't we see These changes on their way and get ready for them? They take us by surprise again and again. Why don't we give more attention to these oncoming changes in their first, their earliest stages, while they are still tendencies only, and while there is still time to do something about it?
I am giving this talk in Basic English tonight only because one man, Mr. C. K. Ogden, in Cambridge about 1920, did make an attempt to see what the great tendencies of our time were, the tendencies which had in them the seeds of the future. Looking into coming events as far as he could-in the cold daylight of 1920-he saw that every increase in man's powers would become a danger if not balanced by a like increase in control. We are learning more and more with the years about these dangers. At least, it is to be hoped that we are truly learning something-about the need for better distribution which our new scale of producing goods has put upon us; about the need for wise political ideas and wider political structures which our new scale in making wars has put upon us; about the need for a common second language which new developments in transport, in radio, and in the motion pictures have put upon us--to give only three great examples.
Mr. Ogden took up the question of a common second language for everyone as the work he might himself best do in meeting the new or increased needs of tomorrow. I say "a second language" because Basic English is not designed to take the place of anyone's mother tongue, French, Spanish, Russian, or English. That is not part of its purposes, and in fact it doesn't have and will not have any tendency in that direction. After all, everything which has most value to any one of us has come to him through his mother tongue. If learning a second common language was going take anyone's language away from him, I, for one, would have nothing to do with it. And that is the feeling of all those who are responsible for Basic
English. Basic is put forward only as a second language, as a simple way of getting enough common language for the everyday needs of trade, transport, news, science, political discussion, and men's businesses and interests generally.
I am still talking in Basic English only, so that you may see that it is regular normal English and not a form of "pidgin." "Pidgin" is the first word I have said tonight which is not in Basic. And on that question of Basic and the rest of English, let me say this. Most learners of Basic get more than a little of the rest of English while they are learning their Basic. Basic is no air-tight vessel. It is a strong framework on which they keep hanging bits of the rest of English all the time. There is no danger that anyone by learning Basic is going to be kept down to 850 words only of English. Our experience is that he goes on freely into the rest of English as far as he has any need to go.
Now what will be the first uses of Basic in the coming years? Here is one chief example-its use in connection with air transport. On that let me put two ideas before you. They are not new ideas, but they are hard to keep clearly in view. It is harder still to keep in mind all their outcomes. And yet, these ideas are keys to the future.
One is that no place on earth is now farther away from New York than 60 hours by airplane. (And in every great plant in which airplanes are being made, there are planes being designed which will make present-day planes seem like Model-T Fords tomorrow.) The outcome is this: Men and women from all parts of the earth will be dropping down among us everywhere
-- men and women with every sort of mother tongue. We will be hearing all the chief languages of the earth in our fields, in our streets and stores and offices, before we are very much older.
The other of my two ideas is this. English-in one form or another-is certainly going to become the common second language of the airways. Is there any possible doubt about that? Who, after the War--at the very time when the organization of general air transport is being put through--will have the planes, the trained airmen, and the men and women ready for work in the control stations at the air field; and in the upkeep
of the planes? Who will have to be responsible for all this? The great plane producing nations. They will have to put this
work of organization through. It will be no attempt to get other nations under their thumbs, but only the outcome of the simple
fact that in the very process of overcoming the Axis, they are producing the plants and the planes and the persons needed for running the airways.
In the air, between plane and control station, there is no time or room for more than one language. Every man and woman in the international airways will have to have enough knowledge of one language to give and take directions-about landings for example and weather conditions, changes of parts, machine trouble, and a hundred and one other things. That one language, at present, will have to be some sort of English, some sort of safe-working English.
I saw a very clear example of this key fact early this summer at Luke Field, Arizona. I was watching the Chinese Air Force getting its training. There were these young Chinese airmen-to-be, with only four or five weeks in which to get enough knowledge of English to keep them safe in the air when they are up there in the sky with their teachers, and, a little later, when they are up there by themselves in a P-40 in cold and deadly fact
hanging on the English words from the control stations coming to them through their earphones.
How is it done? How are they given enough knowledge of English in so short a time? Well it is done in a large measure through Basic English, with the addition naturally of the special words necessary for managing an airplane, tachometer and gyroscope for example. The instructors at Luke Field give them their basic air training through Basic English-the same Basic English I have been using tonight.
If Basic is going to be the language of the airways, what will be some of the outcomes for trade? What new undertakings, what new forms of "pioneering"-to make use of one more word which isn't in Basic-will be possible? Clearly our knowledge of the countries and their needs, and their knowledge of ours, will be much increased. And with that will come new openings for industry and advertisement arid trade in all sorts
of ways. But, more narrowly, wide new fields will be opened in connection with Basic English itself. Advertisements worded in Basic English are even now being given international distribution in trade papers. International newspapers meeting different sorts of needs are being started. Radio news talks in Basic are in operation. And most important probably of all at this stage
-- the teaching of Basic English is offering quite new openings to the teaching motion picture. The sound motion picture, the teaching picture, specially designed for that purpose, is probably the best way of taking a learner quickly and safely and smoothly into Basic English. There are reasons -- I go into them in my book Basic English and Its Uses why Basic and teaching through the sound motion picture go specially well together. But when this work has been done for English, it will have to be done for other languages -- so far as their structure makes that possible. After that there is the great work of giving everyone as much general knowledge as possible, as much science as possible, as much history as possible, and as up-to-date an outlook as possible through this common second language -- for the better meeting of minds among what we are hoping will be our more and more United Nations.
3 By Professor Ivor Armstrong Richards, Harvard University. Address,. New York Herald Tribune Forum November 16, 1943. New York Herald Tribune. Section 8, p. 12. November 21, 1945.
COMMON TONGUE A BASIS FOR COMMON CITIZENSHIP 4
I like to think of British and Americans moving about freely over each other's wide estates with hardly a sense of being foreigners to one another. But I do not see why we should not try to spread our common language even more widely throughout the globe, and without seeking selfish advantage over any, possess ourselves of this invaluable amenity and birthright.
Some months ago I persuaded the British Cabinet to set up a committee of ministers to study and report upon Basic English. Here you have a plan-there are others-but here you have a very carefully wrought plan for an international language capable
of very wide transactions of practical business and of interchange of ideas. The whole of it is comprised in about 650 nouns and 200 verbs or other parts of speech, no more, indeed, than can be written on one side of a single sheet of paper.
What was my delight when the other evening quite unexpectedly I heard the President of the United States suddenly speak of the merits of Basic English. And is it not a coincidence that with all this in mind I should arrive at Harvard in fulfillment of the long-dated invitation to receive this degree with which President Conant has honored me? Because Harvard has done more than any other American university to promote the extension of Basic English.
The first work on Basic English was written by two Englishmen, Ivor Richards, now of Harvard-of this university-and Ogden of Cambridge University, England, working in association. The Harvard Commission on English Language Studies is distinguished both for its research and practical work, particularly in introducing the use of Basic English in Latin America, and this commission, your commission, is now, I am told, working with the secondary school in Boston on the use of Basic English in teaching the main language to American children and in teaching it to foreigners preparing for citizenship.
Gentlemen, I make you my compliments. I do not wish to exaggerate, but you are at the head-streams of what might well be a mighty, fertilizing and a health-giving river.
It would certainly be a grand convenience for us all to be able to move freely about the world-as we shall be able to do more freely than ever known before as the science of the world develops-to be able to move freely about the world and to find everywhere a medium, albeit primitive, of intercourse and understanding.
Might it not also be an advantage to many races and an aid to the building up of our new structure for preserving peace?
All these are great possibilities, and I say, let us go into this together. let us have another Boston Tea Party about it.
Let us go forward, as with other matters, other measures, similar in aim and effect. let us go forward in malice to none and with good will to all.
Such plans offer far better prizes than taking away other people's provinces or land, or grinding them down in exploitation. The empires of the future are the empires of the mind.
4. Address of the British Prime Minister. Winston Churchill at Harvard University, September 6. 1943. New York Times. p. 14. September 7. 1943.
| toc |