Mr. Castle Reviews the Advocate
The current number of the Advocate is unusually varied in matter, but the variety is unfortunately not indicative of excellence. The story, "A Village Iconoclast," by F. E. Greene '07, can claim as its only merit the sympathetic character drawing of the spinsters. This, however, is a quality rare in undergraduate writing, and very pleasant to find. The complete lack of it in "The Two Shippers" by H. V. Morgan '10, combined with an impossible plot, puts the story in the class of the unintentional burlesque. One is glad that the two college types suggested in the number are at least unobtrusive, if indeed they exist at all. The "Non-Conformer" in the third paper of Varied Outlooks by A. Davis 1L., in his self-sufficiency and in his arrogance of difference from ordinary human beings, is only less deformed than the unfortunate youth in "The Reckoning," by C. W. Wickersham 1L., who, having made an ass of himself generally, took "a queer shaped object" from his table drawer and "looked steadily down into the black muzzle" as the memorial clock "counted slowly, Ding, Dong--one, two, three, four, five." Why five rather than six, one wonders.
From such reading one is happy to return to the editorials which this time are by far the best part of the number. It is hoped that with the first of these editorials, a clear, definite, unafraid statement of our position, the "Brown of Harvard" episode will be dropped in press and in conversation. The beautiful tribute to Professor James in the second gives expression to the love and respect held for him by all his former students. The paragraph in "public lectures given in the University" is interesting as snowing our quickness in detecting cheap sentiment, affectation, and our inability to divorce the man, as we see him superficially and are impressed, from the cause which we know even less. The statement that we listened to Mr. Aladyin "with awe and admiration" is true--and sad, because it shows that we are willing to applaud without understanding. We know that Russian autocracy is opposed to progress and freedom of thought, and that Mr. Aladyin is a reformer. That he is the kind of reformer whose methods make almost impossible the task of the real reformers, the men of education and high ideals, men like our own President and the members of his Cabinet, we do not stop to think, Enthusiasm for a good cause is an ennobling thing and the more of it we have the better, but we must also remember that as representatives of the University we must be careful not to lose our heads. In the eyes of the world we are not Smiths and Joneses, but members of Harvard College.