Imatges de pÓgina

command both. A man of average intelligence may be a poor critic, but he can distinguish instinctively the substance from the semblance, and if he wants information and instruction, can divine when and in what degree he has got them. Instruction and information in such circumstances must certainly be presented attractively, and information and instruction as certainly be blended with amusement.

I must now touch on another and very important aspect of this question. Nothing could contribute so efficiently to differentiate journalism as it expresses itself legitimately and in accordance with its true functions and journalism in its degraded and abused forms than what in every other important calling serves to differentiate its legitimate and accredited representatives from the laity, namely, organisation and some form of diploma. Till this is secured it is difficult to see how, as a profession, it can be other than it is, without standards, without principles, without credentials, the general refuge of the canaille and proletariat of the scribbling classes, the realisation of sheer and utter anarchy. Why, it may reasonably be asked, should it be the only calling for which no education is needed, and for which no credentials are required. It is a recognised profession into which young men from all our universities are yearly crowding, and will yearly continue to crowd ; and there is surely as much reason why institutes for advanced secondary education should prepare young men for this profession as for any other profession. This is certain, that many youths have far more aptitude for this particular vocation than for any other, and it is equally certain that if by a course of instruction at a university they could efficiently anticipate what they have now to acquire for themselves on leaving it, and this could be guaranteed by diploma or certificate, a career would, on leaving the university, be at once open to them. It is notorious that both in Great Britain and in the Colonies editors are only too glad to avail themselves of competent, or rather of tolerably competent hands, the most irksome and worrying part of their duties being indeed the training of the novices, on whom at present they have largely to depend. What, therefore, seems needed, is the establishment of a School of Journalism at the universities. I have already shown how at Oxford and Cambridge there would be great and probably insuperable difficulties in the way of such an experiment, and how also even if it were possible it would not, for very good reasons, be desirable. But this does not apply, as I before remarked, to the University of London or to the provincial universities, and more especially to the University of Birmingham, more than one of the faculties of which, and particularly the faculty of Commerce, may be said to meet in principle such a project half-way.

The following scheme has been submitted to the Senate, and is now under consideration. To present it in its complete outline, perhaps I may be allowed to repeat a portion of what has already been given. It is to represent a post-graduation course, or possibly a course leading to a degree, and as this question is at present undecided, the scheme can now be regarded only as a sort of ideal outline or counsel of perfection, and must necessarily be materially modified when adjusted to existing curricula. It falls into two divisions, the one representing the general course, the other the technical.

(1) Modern English History, particularly since the Reform Bill of 1832, with special reference to politics and social questions, such as the development of the democracy, social legislation, and the history of British institutions.

(2) Modern European History during the last fifty years, with special relation to what has recently and still is chiefly occupying the attention of the leading countries of Europe, politically, socially, economically, their mutual relations, leading facts about institutions, territory, population, tariffs, and the like.

(3) Colonial Affairs.—Modern history of the Colonies, practical information about their present state and their relations to Great Britain, including especially their geography, mercantile affairs generally, population, territory, institutions.

(4) Political Philosophy.--Studied for the most part in Burke, De Tocqueville, Bentham, Mill, Maine, Bagehot, and such modern authors as are usually prescribed ; and this also should include such works as treat of the practical duties of citizenship-as we find, for instance, in the series edited by Sir Henry Craik.

(5) Political Economy.-English industrial development and economic problems of current interest.

(6) Finance.—National and municipal finance, taxation, public debts, tariffs, and budget.

(7) English Literature with special reference to modern English literature and the principles of criticism represented in the writings of English critics or, through translation, in those of other languages.

(8) Two modern languages--that is, French and German, not studied critically but practically, and for the purposes principally of conversation and reading.

If the course should not form a course leading to a degree, but should be taken by a student who had already graduated in some art faculty, then only four or five of these subjects need be taken, selected as should be most appropriate for a particular student. It might also be a matter for consideration whether one or more of the following subjects in science might not be substituted for one or more of the art subjects.

(1) Natural philosophy; or the elements of physics and mechanics with the outlines of astronomy; also other such fundamental branches of science as underlie the general progress of modern thought and lend themselves to practical application, besides being of special human interest, for instance :

(2) Chemistry. (3) Physiology (4) Bacteriology. (5) Elementary Biology. (6) Geology and Geography. (7) Metallurgy. (8) The Fundamental Principles of Engineering. Next would come specific training in the technique of journalism.

(1) Descriptive article writing; and here encouragement and opportunity would be given to acquire miscellaneous information such as might be gained from visits to the various departments represented in the scientific and technical departments of the University, from visits to museums, art galleries, and other institutions.

(2) Leading article writing, including of course the writing of leaderettes and notes. Special stress would naturally be laid on this species of composition.

(3) Shorthand. This need not, perhaps, be compulsory, but every encouragement and facility should be given to acquire it.

In addition to these subjects instruction should be given in the practical work of journalism, such as :

(a) The making up generally of a newspaper, condensation of news, guidance as to the selection and relative signification of facts.

(b) The management of paragraphs.

(c) The deciphering and appropriate presentation of telegrams and cablegrams.

(d) Such instruction in the law of copyright and libel as it would be desirable that every journalist should possess.

Of this scheme I need scarcely say that it has no pretension to finality, and is easily susceptible of such modifications as may, in considering it from a directly practical point of view, be found desirable. That if such a course of instruction be eventually instituted it must be constructed on these lines or on lines similar to these there can, however, be no doubt.

A word in summary and conclusion. I have shown that in the interests of two important classes of our younger citizens—those, namely, who, on leaving the universities, will at once or before long be engaged in municipal affairs and politics, and those, a far more numerous class, who will follow journalism as a profession--it is almost urgent that a course of instruction essentially modern should be provided : that no such course is at present open to them ; that there are serious difficulties in the way of making such provision at Oxford and Cambridge, but that those difficulties do not exist in the constitution of the more modern universities with whose educational policy and principles such provision would be in absolute accordance. I have also shown that if journalism is to be what it is of power to be, and what for various and ob us reasons it is more and more ceasing to be, it must be placed on the same footing as other professions, and that the only way to effect this is, as in the case of those other professions, to secure and require by university recognition competency and sanction. We are living in an age in which there is no lack of wealthy philanthropists interested in education, and in furthering the ends at which education might profitably aim, and to the serious consideration of such philanthropists I would venture to recommend this project; for one thing is quite certain—that without their charitable assistance it is doubtful whether the experiment, even if approved in principle, could have a satisfactory trial, or indeed any trial at all.


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ACROSS two thousand years their faces smile

Upon us, with a still refreshing calm ;
Rebuking us that, for the little while

We last, we turn away from life’s true balm
To follow care and strife and restless guile.

*Peace dwells with us,' they sing—as in a psalm Caught from the Spheres—and ever-tranquil joy,

• Because beyond the veil of passing things
“Our eyes behold—what nothing may destroy-

· Eternal Beauty; and the vision brings
· Eternal Strength, and Bliss without alloy,

* And Youth that cannot end, and Victory's wings.'

So sing they, telling that the only real
Path to the Heaven of Heavens is—the Ideal.


· Found among Sir James Knowles's papers after his death.

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