Several men may be sitting in a room, blue with smoke. With feet on the table they often sit late into the night--just talking. Such talks start with gossip and either degenerate into questionable stories or develop into serious discussions of real problems. It is out of the latter sort of discussion that the greatest and inmost spirit of the American university life breathes.
In a group of several men, just one of them can turn the tide from ordinary piffle, and keep the tone of the conversation high. By developing a discussion into something valuable, the best in student life is often expressed. From the ordinary student rocker in the top story of a rooming house may be expressed in college slang, truths which are as great as any which were exhaled from the Greek oracles. Students thus decide to their own satisfaction some of the fundamental questions which otherwise they might never have figured out. A wealth and variety of experiences, and a healthy difference of opinion, all of these do much to sweep away the trivialities and bashfulness of college life, and in the quiet familiarity of the small group, allow the real things to shine forth. In this light, ideas can be stimulated and destinies shaped.
The problem is nearly as old as man, and it will last as long as man endures. It needs always to be regarded. To develop the group discussion means the cultivation of truer friendship and more real education. --Michigan Daily.