Ferro em Ward (1919)

But to these qualities of durability and expensiveness have succeeded those of ready reproduction and indefinite multiplication. These are the elements of diffusion and popularization. It is an evening up of conditions. For along with the massive structures, chiefly for tombs of dead rulers or temples to the gods, there went great deprivation, even in the means of shelter, for the living men of the time. So, too, in the early history of book-making, only the very few could afford to own a book. Only the cheap can become universal, and it is easier to renew a cheap article than to guard a costly one. The ages of stone and bronze and iron have successively passed, and we are living in an age of paper and caoutchouc. (Ward 1919:25)

Now, what concerns the sociologist is primarily the serial order of phenomena. The several groups of phenomena constituting the [67] true “hierarchy” of the sciences, not only stand in the relation of diminishing generality with increasing complexity, but they stand [68] in the relation of parent to offspring, i.e., of filiation. The more complex sciences grow out of the simpler ones by a process of differentiation. [69] The more general phenomena of the simpler sciences are elaborated into more complex forms. They are the raw material which is worked up into more finished products, much as pig iron is worked up into tools, machinery, cutlery, and watch-springs. The simpler sciences contain all that is in the more complex, but it is more homogeneous, and the process of evolution, as we know, is a [70] passage from the homogeneous to the heterogeneous. A serial classification is based on this principle of natural differentiation and the resulting filiation. It might be called tocological. (Ward 1919:66-70)

It can now be seen what I mean by social distribution. It is the socialization of wealth. It is some transgression of the iron law. It is the existence of defects, cracks, pores, and fissures in the economic dam, by which some small part at least of the surplus production seeps through and finds its way into the hands of the wage earner. It is some check to the economic law whereby wages in excess of those required to live and reproduce fail to cause their prompt contraction to that point. No one need of course be told that in the present state of the world, at least, this process is going on. What is supposed to be the final answer to all complaints against the existing industrial system is that the laborer is receiving an increasingly larger share of the wealth produced. This is supposed to [281] dispose of the whole question and relegate all the dissatisfied to the ranks of social agitators, and there is no lack of statistical proof of this fact. As this same argument has been used for about two hundred years we may assume that it has been true during that time, and it is a fair inference that it has always been true to some extent. The flaw in the logic consists in assuming that it is in any sense an answer to the demand for more complete social distribution. As a matter of fact it is an admission of the justice of such a demand. It is never maintained that the laborer gets too large a share of the wealth produced. It is always held that he gets a larger amount now than at some previous period and should therefore be satisfied. But as at any such previous period the same statement was made and is supposed to be true, there is the implied admission that if what he gets now is the just share, what he received then was something less than the just share. And as all this applies to all past periods and will apply to all future ones, the inference is fair that there has never been a time when the laborer received a just share of the wealth produced. But all this belongs to applied sociology, one of the chief problems of which is to formulate the laws and indicate the methods of a perfect social distribution of wealth. (Ward 1919:280-1)

We are content to have discovered that the social forces have spontaneously secured some degree of social distribution, and we may cast a glance at some of the special causes that have produced this result. The principal cause is the heterogeneity of all metasocial groups. It is impossible at the outset for the ruling class to obtain a complete monopoly of labor, and after the establishment of civil law and the formation of the state, whereby rights to property were recognized, the economic laws operating among individuals of all degrees of inequality of mind and character, soon generated a sort of archetypal bourgeoisie with a multiplicity of small owners of varying degrees. The rise of the feudal system interrupted the natural development of this state of things and its gradual transformation into the modern industrial system, but this transformation was ultimately brought about. As all know, the exploiting class then became chiefly the bourgeoisie, and under legal and political protection, especially after the era of machinery began, wealth passed into the hands of industrial leaders, and the great economic struggle began. But industry had now become greatly diversified, the remote regions of the world had been opened up, and there were [282] innumerable outlets for the laborer, dissatisfied with his lot. The great differences in ability and character among workmen produced grades and stimulated ambition. Exceptionally bright hands were called to more lucrative places, compelling employers to raise wages in order to retain their best men. Those who had received the higher grades of salary for considerable time found themselves in position to withdraw and set up business for themselves, thus becoming employers and perhaps “captains of industry.” Such are a few of the ways in which the iron law of wages has been gradually mitigated, and social distribution secured. One need not be a panegyrist of natural law in the economic world to recognize the power of the ontogenetic forces to keep up a difference of potential and convert economic structures into systems of moving equilibrium. There has been some social distribution from the earliest times, and it is increasing with increasing production. Under the division of labor, especially in the mechanic arts, production increases as the square of the number employed, reversing the Malthusian law, and the social distribution is a function of the amount of production per capita. If for no other purpose, therefore, than to increase the social distribution, increase of production is a social desideratum. The laborer becomes an element in the market, and it is more and more the interest of the proprietor of goods to let him share in their consumption. Increased production means diminished price, and the latter at last comes within the resources of the real producer. (Ward 1919:281-2)

Equipped with the directive agent as a guide to the dynamic agent, that “favored race” of beings called man set out on a career for the conquest of nature. Throughout his prehuman stage, like the rest of the animal world, this being had always been the slave of nature. The iron law of competition had held him in its grasp as it holds all organic beings. His was a struggle for existence like the rest, but he proved himself the fittest to survive and he survived. By a series of accidents, some of which have been recorded in this work, cephalization found in him its highest expression and brain became a factor in this struggle. Facile princeps, it soon gained the lead, and from that time on, this being, thus rendered human, distanced all competitors. He early saw the advantage of association and secured the added benefit of the law of the survival of the social. He passed through all the stages described in Chapters X to XV, and emerged into the stage of compound social assimilation with a military regime of exploitation, a sacerdotal caste, an intermediate and independent free business element, and a subordinate slave population. All except the last were under the influence of one or more of the dynamic principles enumerated in Chapter XI, and even the slaves felt the effect of the cross fertilization, especially in the form characterized as social chemistry. The whole mass was rising, but parts rose with special rapidity, the business element through the exercise of its advantageous, and the leisure class of its non-advantageous mental faculties. (Ward 1919:511)

The plow grew out of the digger, and the primitive plow had no mold-board, did not throw a furrow to one side, but merely scratched the ground. A wooden mold-board was introduced much later, but the iron plowshare was not invented until the end of the eighteenth century. (Ward 1919:518)

Most of the Greek art in the time of Homer was either Egyptian or Chaldean, both being introduced by the Phenicians. Such were [519] the arts of metal working (chiefly bronze and iron), weaving, the construction of boats and war chariots, also of tripods, which constituted their chairs, and of such houses as they had. Espinas [Nota de rodapé 1: “Les Origines de la Technologie,” par Allred Espinas, Paris, 1897, p. 45 (chiefly on the authority of Hultsch and Bliimner)] says that they “were acquainted with the spindle and distaff, the sail boat, the bit, the bellows, the plow, the war chariot, the carriage, the hinge, the lock, the auger, the bow, the turning lathe, the potter’s wheel, the balance.”From the Phenicians they imported “prepared fabrics, wines, oil, and intoxicants; papyrus articles, linen (an exceedingly important product), ointments, prepared spices, incense, embalming-mixtures, perfumes, dyes, and drugs from Egypt, and the various products of metal work, ornaments and weapons of a superior quality.”[Nota de rodapé 2: “Homeric Society,” by A. G. Keller, New York, 1902, p. 19.] But prior to the Trojan war the Greeks were an almost exclusively pastoral people, consisting of nomads from the east who had conquered the original less aggressive inhabitants and reduced them to slavery, becoming themselves partially fixed, and subsisting chiefly upon their oxen and sheep and a rude agriculture. Neverthelessjthey did not know the use of cows’ milk and had not learned to make butter or cheese. Eggs are not mentioned in the “Iliad” or “Odyssey,” and only the inhabitants of the maritime districts used salt, although, according to Sanchoniatho it was discovered in the eleventh generation of men. They reckoned by the decimal system, counting their fingers like other. barbarians. They had no alphabet, but received later that of the Phenicians derived chiefly from Egypt, so that until that time those great epics must have been simply traditions whose preservation was intrusted to priests or other specially appointed guardians to hold in memory and transmit to their successors. An alphabet and the art of writing on papyrus or something more manageable than stone, glass, and metal, must therefore be set down as one of the great steps in civilization. Down to the time when Ctesibius of Alexandria invented the clepsydra, time was kept by the sun-dial, invented by the Babylonians and mentioned in the Bible (Isaiah xxxviii, 8). The power of steam was known and the principle embodied in Hero’s engine, but no practical use was made by the ancients of so important a discovery. The extensive public works of the Romans prove that some of the most important principles of engineering, [520] including those of the arch and the catenary, had been worked out and applied. (Ward 1919:518-20)

The railway, hatched under ground, came to the surface in 1804, substituted iron for wooden rails in 1805, and equipped with Stephenson’s improved locomotive in 1829, carried the first passengers from Liverpool to Manchester in 1830. The first steamboat dates from 1802 and the screw propeller from 1838. (Ward 1919:523)

WARD, Lester. 1919. Pure sociology: a treatise on the origin and spontaneous development of society. New York: The Macmillan Company.