Hicks Urges Cooperation With Labor By Middle Class in Wellesley Speech
Says Interests Identical With Workers'; Attacks Class Pride
"The middle class is not going to keep very much longer whatever it has that separates it from the lower class," claimed Granville Hicks '23, counselor in American History and Literature, in a speech at Wellesley College last night.
Defining the middle class as the white collar and professional group from small salaried workers up through the more prosperous business and professional men, Hicks, center of a disturbance last fall on account of his Communistic tendencies, traced the history of the bourgeoisie through the depression.
Many of the middle class have been on relief, he pointed out, but they are less able to take it than the working class.
"The interests of the middle class are those of the working class on both the economic and the political levels," he affirmed.
He stressed the need of the middle class to join with the workers in their activities, and mentioned the work of the newspaper guild, the teachers' union, and the organized clerical and office workers.
"Although white collar unions have only organized five to six percent of the workers," he said, "the fact that so much has been gained in a comparatively short time is encouraging."
"The trouble is," he asserted, "that the middle class retains its highly developed class pride. If refuses to look at the situation as a whole and is willing to put the importance of the own convenience above general principles."
Hicks, speaking before the Wellesley Forum in Severance Hall, stated his belief in the eventual triumph of Socialism. It will not come about in the immediate future, he admitted, but the serious possibility is that we may get Fascism.
It is worth our effort to keep democracy a while longer, because if the present economic system collapses, fascism may result, he said. He believes in an economic isolation within the frame-work of democracy, not by dividing what we have but by increasing production.