By A. Adrian Albert

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Sample text

Now, it is by means of this stamp that he is able to identify the character of the "German culture," which is his own patent; and all things that do not bear it are so many enemies and obstacles drawn up against him. In the presence of these arrayed forces the Culture-Philistine either does no more than ward off the blows, or else he denies, holds his tongue, stops his ears, and refuses to face facts. He is a negative creatureeven in his hatred and animosity. Nobody, however, is more disliked by him than the man who regards him as a Philistine, and tells him what he isnamely, the barrier in the way of all powerful men and creators, the labyrinth for all who doubt and go astray, the swamp for all the weak and the weary, the fetters of those who would run towards lofty goals, the poisonous mist that chokes all germinating hopes, the scorching sand to all those German thinkers who seek for, and thirst after, a new life.

This might be very little; in which case, even if the victory had involved the most glorious display of arms, it would still offer no warrant for inordinate rapture. Even so, however, there can be no question, in our case, of the victory of German culture; and for the simple reason, that French culture remains as heretofore, and that we depend upon it as heretofore. It did not even help towards the success of our arms. Severe military discipline, natural bravery and sustaining power, the superior generalship, unity and obedience in the rank and filein short, factors which have nothing to do with culture, were instrumental in making us conquer an opponent in whom the most essential of these factors were absent.

I cannot help pointing out the grave consequences of this backwardness of England, which has arisen from the fact that you have never taken any ideas or theories, not even your own, seriously. Democracy, dear Englishmen, is like a stream, which all the peoples of Europe will have to cross: they will come out of it cleaner, healthier, and stronger, but while the others are already in the water, plunging, puffing, paddling, losing their ground, trying to swim, and even half-drowned, you are still standing on the other side of it, roaring unmercifully about the poor swimmers, screamers, and fighters below,but one day you will have to cross this same river too, and when you enter it the others will just be out of it, and will laugh at the poor English straggler in their turn!

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College algebra by A. Adrian Albert


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