Open main menu

Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 13.djvu/680

This page has been validated.
660
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

ages by New York; and it is an interesting fact that the great tide of population and business which has set in from the Eastern States toward the interior has chiefly passed through the gap cut in the highlands by the old river whose course we have endeavored to trace. The topographical features of this pass led to the construction of the Erie Canal, and it was comparatively easy to reëstablish there the old line of water communication. In later years the same influences caused the construction through it of the most important railroad line of the world. The natural advantages of this route are such as to give New York and her connections with the interior a positive and inalienable superiority over all competing ports and lines of traffic—a superiority which, though it may be temporarily abrogated by municipal misgovernment, or be diverted from public to private profit by individual or corporate rapacity, will ultimately and always assert itself, and give to this city a continuance of the prosperity that has attended her past career.

 

EDUCATION AS A SCIENCE.
By ALEXANDER BAIN, LL. D.,

PROFESSOR IN THE UNIVERSITY OF ABERDEEN.

V.—THE EMOTIONS IN EDUCATION.

THE Emotion of Power.—The state named the feeling or emotion of power expresses a first-class motive of the human mind. It is, however, shown, with great probability, not to be an independent source of emotion. It very often consists of a direct reference to possessions or worldly abundance. In other cases, I cannot doubt that the pleasure of malevolent infliction is an element; the love of domineering, or subjecting other people's wills, would be much less attractive than it is if malevolent possibilities were wholly left out.

Power in the actual is given by bodily and mental superiority, by wealth, and by offices of command. Hence it can be enjoyed in any high degree only by a few. It is, however, capable of great ideal expansion; we can derive gratification from the contemplation of superior power, and the outlets for this are numerous, including not merely the operations of living beings, but the forces of inanimate Nature. For example, the sublime is an ideal of great might or power.

We have now almost, but not quite, led up to the much-urged educational motive, the gratification of the sense of self-activity in the pupils. This must afterward undergo a very searching examination. Let us, however, first briefly review another leading class of well-marked feelings, those designated by the familiar terms, self-complacency, pride, vanity, love of applause. Whether these be simple or