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September 19, 1942

War, Politics and Emotion

JAMA. 1942;120(3):247. doi:10.1001/jama.1942.02830380079049

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In her introduction to this book Dorothy Canfield Fisher says that "We can hardly have too many good, clear, readable statements of the reasons, political, economic, emotional and glandular, why human beings continue to commit the imbecile crime of colliding with each other in war." The author's work is in every sense of the word an appeal to reason. He is convinced that our knowledge of science has outrun our ability to use it intelligently. Dr. Bourne feels that the predominance of aged leaders over youthful ones is one of the chief difficulties of the democracies. In his chapter on democracy, however, he recognizes that it is the highest form of government, requiring nevertheless a high standard of intelligence, education and civilization to make it fully effective. The conclusion is that the dominance of men over reason is the cause of all political evils and that such dominance cannot be

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