for it, we supposed that this was a living and stable conviction to be consistently carried into practice whenever opportunity arose. But, if we rightly interpret subsequent developments, our confidence was sadly misplaced.
For no sooner had Dr. Dix made proclamation of his views on the woman question, than a rare opportunity was afforded him to reduce them to application in a large and influential way. The Association for the Promotion of the Higher Education of Woman, in New York, had petitioned the authorities of Columbia College to admit women to their institution that they might obtain this "higher education." The petition was referred to a committee, of which Dr. Dix was chairman, and he is declared to be the author of the report that was made upon the subject. It was decided not to admit women to co-education, and it was further declared that Columbia was not able to establish an adjunct institution for the use of female students; but it was offered that, if the women or their friends would provide their own separate accommodations, Columbia College would take charge of the teaching; and, in anticipation of this possible event, the committee prepared such a scheme of studies as it deemed suitable for the purpose in view, viz., to afford woman the facilities for a "higher education" than is now assumed to be available.
Dr. Dix, as we have intimated, drew up this report and framed the curriculum approved by the committee. The situation was thus in every respect most favorable for putting female education upon a higher and more rational basis, and conforming it to the requirements of the feminine character as a preparation for woman's practical life. There were no trammels, the institution was to be newly constituted, and there was no reason for not appealing to first principles in shaping the scheme of studies and embodying all that has been gained in the progress of education. Moreover, there were abundant precedents for shaping the course of studies to the highest ends of practical usefulness. Columbia College has already appended to it a group of colleges devoted to applied knowledge—a mining school, a medical school, a law school, a school of arts, and a school of political science. There was therefore full freedom to construct a new curriculum for female students designed to do whatever a "higher education" can accomplish for the improvement and elevation of woman.
It might have been thought most fortunate that the subject was mainly in the hands of a man who had given special and earnest attention to the question, and avowed fundamental convictions which had a potent and salutary bearing upon the result to be attained. Dr. Dix had said: "The place and work of woman in this world are a place and work in social life; and her place and work are not those of the man." He had said: "Whatever it be in thought, deed, or will that works among us now to break up the home, to make the home idea mean and contemptible in the eyes of woman, or to unfit her for domestic duties, and disgust her with her proper work, whatever now acts on her high wrought nature, her ambition, her self love, to turn her steps away from the home-life, and inflate her with visions of a career in the public places outside—this, whatever it be, is working against the best interests, the hope, the happiness of the human race." Could it be imagined that one who had so vivid a conception of womanly nature and destiny, such an appreciation of the higher sphere of her legitimate activities, and so earnest a conviction of the perverting influences to which she is exposed, would frame a working scheme explicitly designed to mold the feminine character in which these guiding ideas are wholly ignored? Yet this is the anom-