Open main menu

Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 50.djvu/405

This page has been validated.
389
THE PSYCHOLOGY OF GENIUS.

It brings a high price, and is largely used in the manufacture of mill rolls and car wheels. Indeed, its superior qualities are so marked that it is used by various manufacturers in the United States in cases where great strength combined with wearing and, in the higher grades, chilling quality is of first importance.

As an evidence of the splendid quality of this iron the writer gives the following extract from a letter written a short time ago by a leading American manufacturer, viz.:

"Desiring to make a casting which should combine great strength with a tough wearing surface, we have lately been experimenting with the Canada Iron Furnace Company's metal, and by using it we have raised the transverse strength of our test bars from 2,300 and 2,500 to from 3,900 to 4,000, the test being with one-inch-square bars twelve inches long. We have never been able to accomplish any such results with any other iron we have used, and in addition to this greatly increased strength we find an added toughness which makes the casting work almost like a piece of steel."

 

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF GENIUS.
By Dr. WILLIAM HIRSCH.

OUR knowledge of the physiology of the human body has been so much enriched by pathological facts that we may truly say that some branches of it would, as far as we can see, have remained forever closed books if the effects of disease had not been observed. So it is with psychology in its turn. Since mental disease has been systematically studied, the science of the mind has undergone a veritable revolution. Having laid down its conceptions and having learned that psychical processes, like all other phenomena of Nature, are subject to definite law, psychology has made an effort to determine the law of the mental processes of genius and to frame a definition of genius that should take into account facts which are now scientifically established. Many attempts have been made to determine what genius is, from which various conclusions have resulted, but those inquirers who have sought to penetrate to its psychological laws and to explain its phenomena upon recognized psychological principles have been obliged at last to acknowledge that they had to do with the most diverse psychological conditions which have been promiscuously labeled as genius. The question whether the popular word genius can be used as a scientific term can be decided only by a psychological analysis of those poets, painters, virtuosos, scholars, statesmen, and generals who have been generally recognized as geniuses. Famous poets, observant of their own inward condi-