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The Story of Civilization by CEM Joad

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THE STORY OF

CIVILIZATION

BY

C. E. M. JOAD

THE HOW-&-WHY SERIES

EDITED BY GERALD BULLBTT

A. & C. BLACK, LTD 4, 5 & 6 SOHO SQUARE, LONDON, W.i

London

A. & C. BLACK, LTD

Melbourne

THE OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

Bombay Calcutta Madras

MACMILLAN AMD COMPANY LTD

PRINTED IN ORRAT BRITAIN ■TL»I. CLARr, LTD., IDINBUICH

CONTENTS

PAGE

INTRODUCTION-I. A Talk 7

II. A Talk about the Talk 14

CHAP.

I. THE GREAT RELIGIOUS TEACHERS 20

II. GREECE AND THE MAKING OF BEAUTIFUL THINGS 30

III. FINDING THINGS OUT 47

IV. How SCIENCE HAS CHANGED OUR LIVES 57

V. THE SPREADING OF KNOWLEDGE 68

VI. THE SHARING OF MONEY 76

VII. OUR OWN CIVILIZATION 83

INTRODUCTION

I. A TALK

Myself. I am trying to write a book on Civilization, and I want to find out what being civilized is. What do you think?

Lucy. Oh, I suppose, wearing proper clothes, riding about in buses and cars, having money to buy things and shops to buy them in.

Myself. Yes, but babies wear proper clothes, and Mrs. X1 rides in buses, and buys things in shops. Would you say that babies and Mrs. X were civilized?

Lucy. Oh no! I don't think they are a bit. But, you see, they could be if they liked. There are so many civilized things about now, that anybody can be civilized if he tries.

Myself. What sort of things do you mean?

Lucy. Machines, and trains, and wireless, and telephones, and cinemas.

Myself. Well, I dare say they have something to do how with civilization; but I don't think that just having them and using them makes you civilized. After all, being civilized ought to be some credit to you, something you can be proud of, and there is

1 Mrs. X is the housekeeper. Lucy thinks her rather savage.

7 1

8 THE STORY OF CIVILIZATION

nothing to be proud of about getting into a train. Let us try and think of some civilized people, and see if that helps us. Tell me anybody you can think of.

Lucy. Shakespeare.

Myself. Why?

Lucy. Because he was a great man and wrote plays that people are proud of.

Myself. Now I think we may be getting warmer. But tell me, do you like Shakespeare's plays?

Lucy. Not much.

Myself. Then why do you say they are great?

Lucy. Because, I suppose, I shall like them some day. Anyway, grown-up people make a great fuss about them.

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