Imágenes de páginas

the people that made the first Napoleon | state has not reached the lower classes of Emperor, and it seems probable that their the interior. actual suffrage will confer the same dignity Were France in danger of the Czar, we upon his nephew. It is clear the republic could not now offer to engage in a Republiof France is a form only, while ours is a can war on her behalf. The Czar, it is said, reality; that is to say, it exists in our indi- governs France by diplomacy. If it is true vidual hearts and wills. We do not establish that the Jesuists, and Emperor of Russia, exa republic by our vote; it is already estab-ercise a joint dictatorship over the French peolished in us. We are born and educated ple, through Louis Napoleon, and if it hapfreemen ; our liberties are not conferred upon pens that this Louis Napoleon is elected by us, nor outwardly guaranteed to us. We are the universal suffrage of the people of France the sovereigns, our rulers only the agents of during the coming year, would any aid of our sovereignty. If a choice were given to ours be rightfully demanded by a people so us, by “universal suffrage,” whether this or little able to manage their own internal inthat man should be our emperor, we should terests ? To extend such aid against the reply simply, “We have no need of either." intervention of the Czar, we must first know In our families, our villages, our States, we that the nation desires it for purely repubexercise sovereignty. “Where, then,” ex- lican ends. To intervene in favor of a small claims the Frenchman, " is the guaranty of republican party, unsupported by the your freedom, the sanction of your laws ?” masses, would be to destroy that party by "In our weapons, Messieurs; we are familiar exciting the hatred of the lower orders against with the use of arms from infancy, and we ourselves and it. learn by heart the Declaration of Independ- But we are bound, as we revere our anence.

cestors and respect ourselves, to propagate In France, all interest and all power the creed of republicanism, and to extend emanates from the centre; the people re- the glory, the knowledge, and the benefits vere Paris, they despise each other, they of freedom. How are we to do this? have no confidence in themselves. Either If we interpose directly in the affairs of by nature or through inexperience, they suffer other nations, it must be with a definite unthe power of the state to fall away from them derstanding of the true interests of repubtoward the centre. In America, on the con- licanism in America, where at least it has a trary, each man is the state. L'etat c'est solid existence. moi, “ I am the state," says the surly De- Let us suppose again that the news has mocrat: and he is indeed the state ; there is reached us of a revolution in Great Britain, at least no other state. In him lies the and we are called upon by a portion of the family, the sovereignty, the church, and the people of England to assist them in subvertempire ; his heart is a focus of grand pas- ing the monarchy and founding a republic. sions, and a radiating centre of all powers: We must be sure before we render aid that and thus are we, the people, a well-founded we shall not be received as enemies and inrepublic, a well-developed organization, terlopers by the body of the population, and firmest and broadest at the root, whose that this jealousy may not react upon the vitality is in millions of living centres, co- cause we came there to support. And yet it hering by spiritual unity.

is our bounden duty, in all things, to sustain Our faith in the republicanism of Europe the good cause. How, then, are we to do has been shaken by the unfortunate issue of this ? successive French and Italian revolutions. It is necessary to make good the cause at We discover at last that, though the edu- home, or we cannot decently offer aid to it cated talent of Europe is eager to follow our abroad. The failure of our aid would throw brilliant and successful essay at republican- us backward with violence into a state of ism, the masses of the people, through igno- inaction and self-disgust. rance or incapacity, either do not understand By the doctrine of Kossuth and of the or fail to sustain these movements. Society Democratic party of the Union, gratuitous has profited in a thousand ways ; population intervention in the internal affairs of soverhas increased; trade, industry, and know- eign states is a crime. Why is Abolitionism ledge have advanced; but the idea of self- a detestable policy? Because it is a policy government and individual interest in the i of intervention.

" In point

Why does the Emperor of Russia merit tration, “that every state shall mind its and receive our execrations? Because he is own business," we might then demand of the patron of intervention,

the world that the principle remain inviolate Why do the people of America protest hereafter. against the intervention of Great Britain in A series of powerful remonstrances, statesthe affairs of the Central and South Ameri- manlike, and altogether high-toned and corcan states, unless it be that such interven- rect, could not fail to have a powerful effect, tion violates the liberties of states? when issued by a nation of twenty-three

If we take the position of defenders of millions, resolved upon the maintenance of state sovereignty, it must be with the assur-order." ance that the doctrine is well and solidly The SANCTION of our principle of non-inestablished among ourselves. Before com- tervention, within our own limits, is the army mitting ourselves to a war of principle, in and navy of the United States, established behalf of nations on the other slope of the for the maintenance of order." hemisphere, it will be necessary to make a of fact," as they say in England, our “ rule," review and inspection of the hither slope. without this sanction, would become a dead

As far as we are contaminated by the letter. doctrines of conquest and of Abolitionism, Looking now into the policy of adminis(and it is claimed by many, that a consider-tration, in States and municipalities, we find able part of the nation is infected by the the sanction of non-intervention existing in one or the other,) so far we are incapable of our State militia, our volunteer companies, engaging in a crusade against monarchs for and our constabulary force. By these we the maintenance of state rights.

compel the observance of non-intervention" While the doctrine of a balance of power between man and man. arises by necessity among despotic govern It appears to a philosophical eye, as ments, where the predominance of one en though the entire system of the Republic, dangers the existence of all, that of non-in-domestic and foreign, is, or, for consistency, tervention, or of state rights, as certainly ought to be, a mere ramification of this rootoriginates among republics. If rights are principle of non-intervention, with the sancinherent, conquest is a violation of their in- tions necessary to its maintenance. The herence. Hence, we derive our favorite rule reader will, consequently, understand us, of NON-INTERVENTION, forbidding interfer- when we suggest that the sovereign people ence in the affairs of sovereign states. of America, in coming forward before all the

Let it be supposed that the governments world as defenders of their fundamental law of Europe, alarmed at the growing power of or rule, in the affairs of nations, come forAmerica, in the commerce and policy of ward merely as republicans. the world, had formed an alliance against The rule of non-intervention, with an adeus, and had agreed among themselves upon quate sanction, would become the cornera system of secret war upon the States and stone, or, more properly, the root-principle institutions of the Union. They would of a body of international law. That law argue the necessity of such a system, under has hitherto derived itself from monarchical their own doctrine of a balance of power. codes, pending the several adjustments of the

The “Balance of Power,” not now for balance of power, that is to say, during the Europe only, but for the civilized world, ab- formation of the great empires of Europe solutely demands the breaking up of this and Asia. The opposition of the two prinimmense and dangerous organization, which ciples, each pretending to be a root of all ought now to be divided into several por- international law whatsoever, might occations, small enough to be played off against sion some confusion in the affairs of Europe, each other.

but could only settle and confirm ours upon The doctrine of non-intervention, on the a more enduring basis. Several ugly factions other hand, will compel us to oppose all would probably be annihilated by it in the such inhuman conclusions.

heart of the Union. The party of conquest, To carry out our doctrine in practice, as of which Mr. Polk was the representative, before observed, we must begin at home; could not exist. That would be a good result. and having first agreed among ourselves to If we are indeed to begin a new epoch, hold it sacred as a rule of internal adminis- as some have proposed, by reconstructing

our foreign policy—in other words, by com-mediate neighbors, within a few days' sail ing forward as the defenders of non-inter- us; when all this is considered, and t vention-we have clearly a work of magni- necessity added of a radical and comple tude to accomplish. For, first, we have to reformation of the consular and diploma establish for ourselves, in the mind of the system of the United States in every clima entire nation, a true policy of intercourse. of the globe; adding to all this a thorough not only with monarchies, but with republics, organized office of foreign information, to If we rush into this affair without suitable established at Washington, independent preparation and agreement, we incur the party, and open at all times to the press ai danger of committing vast and horrible blun- the people ; —when all this, we say, is co ders, such as only republics commit, like a sidered, we may with all earnestness uri war without a reason, or a diplomacy of upon the men of the Whig party—the par threat without a navy or an army to support of order and constitutional security, the par it. It must appear, also, that what we do whose creed is positive and not negative, co is undertaken in our own behalf, for it is not structive, not destructive—to consider the ir permitted to nations, much less to empires, pending change; and, if it must come, 1 to exercise a theoretic or an impulsive gene- determined that the new policy shall be co rosity. Our naval forces and our arms can structed in accordance with those principl be neither given away nor lent without con- which they hold to be vital, not only to the sideration. Our “ remonstrances” must be country, but to the cause of freedom throug weighty and significant, drawing their out the world. It is no longer a time for c strongest arguments from the salus populi, visions in the great party of principle. It the good of the people.

time that the great underlying sense ar When it is considered that this new foreign conscience of the nation should be arouse policy is to come out as the antagonist of from its present lethargy, and throw off fro the " balance of power" principle—that is to the surface of society the scum of frotł say, as the enemy of conquest and of des- politicians, who are manufacturing publ potic intervention—republicanism against a opinion, and obtruding names for the hel corrupt world; that it is to lay a new foun- of state in the coming storm, utterly ineomp dation and raise a new structure of interna- tent. The next President of these Unite tional law; that we have first to establish States, to be elected in a few months, mu it on a sure foundation at home; that it be the greatest statesman in the world, if I must be tested first among nations, our im- can be found among us.



It was the good fortune of the writer, turers ?” any American gentleman coul when young, and at a later period, (one of give him very proper and full information. A the happiest recollections of his life !) to have American would be quite at home with th attended the brilliant lectures of the world- subject. But ask him what they are and ho renowned Parisian professors. We have had they are managed in foreign countries, an the honor to be personally acquainted and especially in France; unless he has travele to hold intercourse with many of them, and much, it is probable that he may be at to collect anecdotes and a correct knowledge loss for a reply, and that many mistake of their character and talent. Our account, should escape from his lips. The reason i therefore, may contain something new; and, that a great difference exists between Franc whatever else it may lack, we can yet vouch and this country respecting this subject. for its perfect accuracy.

In the United States, the lecturers If a foreigner should inquire, “What every kind are numerous—almost as nume exactly are, in this country, lectures and lec-rous as flowers in the spring. In France they are, properly so called, very few. In he is lecturing gratuitously for the commuthis country, every one can set up for a lec- nity at large. What chance, then, there taurer, whatever may be the amount of under these circumstances ? The chance of kience, talent, and reputation of which he speaking to empty or very thin benches ; is possessed, provided he be gifted with flu- which is, indeed, neither pleasant por proency and copiousness of language. He is fitable. s.most sure to be welcome, and to meet with Which is the best of the two systems ? It public favor and remuneration; for in this would be out of place here to enter into a Cantry, be it said to our praise, we are fond full disquisition of their merits and demerits. of lectures, and very kind to lecturers. Both have their advantages and their deIn France, voluntary lecturers can start fects. By the first, favor and encou

courageup on their own hook, as the Yankee phrase ment, and sometimes success, are secured to s; but they find very little favor and sup- adventurers, to quacks, and charlatans ; by port, that is to say, money or reputation, the other, the field is narrowed to untried anless they appear before an audience, her- lecturers, and they are smothered at the alded by highly laudatory recommendations debût, though they may be gifted with talent of the press ; for every where the flourish of and information. Disheartened by the difrumpets has, at least for a time, an admira- ficulty, they dare not face a formidable comble and magical influence. The real lec- petition, and turn their exertions in other turers, however, are the patented lecturers, directions—for instance, writing for newsif we may use the expression—that is to papers, and giving lessons. Hence, the litesay, professors of eminence, who, after a long rary or scientific market is overstocked with probation, and proofs of scientific or literary reporters and sub-editors, who, under other merit

, are regularly appointed to a public circumstances, might have been successful institution, or a Faculié des Sciences ou des lecturers. Lettres, to give a series of lectures, carefully We recollect that last winter an American prepared, upon the branch intrusted to them, gentleman living in Versailles, and writing and who are entirely remunerated from the to a newspaper in this city, somewhat public treasury. Every one, either native or angrily complained of his not having the foreigner, can attend these lectures without opportunity of attending various lectures for paying a cent. Thus it is that the professor his evening amusement, and said, in the way never need feel uneasy about pecuniary com- of peroration : "Why do they not give us pensation, and he has only to take care of those interesting lectures to which I was achis reputation for superior lecturing. customed in the States ?" He was right in

In the United States, moreover, the field his complaints; but I suspect that, if he had for lecturing (and making money by it) is lived in Paris, he would have found there larger and wider. After an experiment of plenty of enjoyment, and plenty of lectures a fortnight or several weeks in some of the of high interest. large cities, the successful lecturer may pur

There was, and is still, I think, in Paris, sue a systematic course of travels and pere- an old and senerable institution called the grinations over the States. Almost every "Athenæum,” where since 1785 there have where he is sure to find a taste for science successively appeared men of brilliant attainor belles lettres, sufficient, at least, to give a ments in science or belles lettres, and where few successful lectures, and to gather in his lectures are given as in this country. But progress a certain amount of reputation and the stars have been few; the indifferent dollars.

lecturers have been almost a legion; and In France, it is not so. The field is nar- hence the popular favor has never strongly row and limited. With the exception of supported the institution, and it is living Paris and some large cities, there is no pros- more on the glorious recollections of the pect of very profitable lecturing. Indiffer- past than on the success of the present ence prevails in small towns. In the chief time. cities of the departments, he would find the Some years ago, a literary gentleman patented lecturer (le professeur de la faculté struck on a new and happy idea. Availing des lettres ou des sciences) already estab- himself of his numerous relations with the lished, under arms, and supported by public aristocracy and ladies of cultivated taste, he favor and esteem, more especially because I established des matinées littéraires, in which he lectured on the various branches of lite- demned by public opinion. In fact, it w rature, reading with a superior taste and not be attempted. skill the most beautiful extracts from poets The Faculté des Lettres (a branch of or orators, giving anecdotes and biographical perior learning of the Académie de Pari sketches of the authors, &c. After exhaust- under the direct jurisdiction of the Min ing the belles lettres, properly so called, he of Public Instruction. It embraces from delivered a series of historical lectures on teen to eighteen special professors for France and England. For many years both lettres et les sciences. A professor is were quite successful.

pointed by the Minister from a list of ca But the two great luminaries of science, dates made up by the Corps de la Fact literature, and learning are to be found in Here the same qualifications are requisit two institutions, entirely supported and paid in the College of France. Here are fa by the Government, whatever it may be the same guaranties of permanency and le Collège de France et la Faculté des lettres, same advantages. at Paris, with which are connected, as spe- By the law of March, 1850, many al cial professors and lecturers, the most distin-ations have been introduced in the sys guished men in every branch. It is on this of public instruction throughout France. stage that the illustrious writers, whose has established as many Académies as t] names we have prefixed, have appeared, and are departments, eighty-six in all. The it is there that they have acquired a great struction is superior, secondary, and prim part of the glory and popularity by which The superior itself is divided into five their names are hallowed.

cultés : divinity, law, physic, sciences, The establishment of the Collège de literature. There are seven facultés of France may be traced back to the reign of vinity, (five Catholic and two Protestant Francis the First, three centuries ago. It for the law, 3 for physic, 11 for scien has been modified, enlarged, and perfected, and 13 for literature. according to the progress of society and Collaterally to the Université, the supe science. In our time, there are connected learning is represented by institutions v with it twenty-one professors or lecturers, perform a great part in forwarding the į whose duty it is to give, for six months, lec- gress of mind and of science. Such are tures on the Greek, I oman, French, and College of France, the Museum of Nati oriental languages and literature, upon gene- History, the course of archæology at ral history, poetry, eloquence, natural histo- National Library, the School of Living E ry, political economy, &c. Their chairs are ern Languages, the School of Vulgar Ara awarded to them for life. They may choose, at Marseilles, the course of astronomy on account of ill health, or other good rea- the Observatory and the Bureau des I sons, an assistant professor to fill their place, gitudes, (a scientific committee,) and l’E to whom they resign the half or more of des Chartes. their salary. The mode of appointment is Summarily, the Faculty of Letters wisely calculated to secure a good choice. Paris, and the College of France, constit A professor to the College of France is ap- the chief establishments for the superior pointed by the chief of the State from two struction. There has been a period of ex sists of candidates, the one made up by the ordinary splendor, (it is that, the history professors as a body, the other by the Minis- which we intend to relate,) when thousa ter of the Interior. A genuine and public of enthusiastic young men attended the m reputation is necessary in science or litera- profound and brilliant lectures. This ti ture, even to have one's name put upon the is no more, though many courses are v list, and, à fortiori, to prevail over his com- attended; but none of the actual lectui petitors. Those two powerful engines in the have attained the influence or the glory affairs of the world, intrigue and favor, the former, with one exception. have very

little to do in the selection. “Has Among the illustrious men whose nar such a one published remarkable works ?” I have prefixed, the first three belong to or, “ Has he given proofs of talent and su- Faculté des Lettres, the other two to perior acquirements ?" These are the sole Collège de France. The peculiar period questions asked. An indifferent selection which the first three rose to so great would be promptly and without fail con- | influence and distinction begins with Dece

« AnteriorContinuar »