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Full text of "Man In The Modern World"

COLONIES  IN A CHANGING WORLD

welfare and conservation regulations approved by the Colonial Com-
mission. Existing private concerns (some of which, like the United
Africa Company, are huge and powerful bodies) must clearly be
subjected to similar regulation, social as well as financial.

There are many other aspects of colonial development which it
would be interesting to discuss, but space forbids. I would, however,
like to mention two. First, it is very important that there should be
a well-thought-out population policy for backward areas. As health
measures bear fruit, we may expect a formidable spurt of population
growth in areas such as tropical Africa; and population pressure is
one of the main causes of economic backwardness in countries like
India. Thus the provision of birth-control facilities should be a
recognized part of the colonial health programme.

Finally, we must do our utmost to secure a continuity of cultural
growth, even for the most backward peoples of the world. At present,
in most areas the old tribal society and its values and ideals are being
rapidly destroyed, and nothing solid is being put in its place. The
detribalized native too often gets the worst of both worlds, acquiring
a rather unpleasant veneer of imitation white civilization over roots
of tribal ignorance and superstition.

Is it not possible to combine the old and the new in a better
way—to graft the better aspects of modern technology and educa-
tion on to a healthy stock of native tradition and skill? There
have been some interesting experiments in this direction, notably
at Achimota College in the Gold Coast. Already the experiment has
demonstrated the immense access of self-respect and vitality which
accrues to the African when he finds he can produce by his own efforts
something which is of high standard and useful to the community.
The new policy of the Indian Bureau in the U.S.A. is bearing similar
fruit. Only by such means can one encourage the native peoples to
take pride in their own traditions and achievements> and enable them
to make a distinctive contribution to world culture.

I can sum up the pith of the colonial problem in a brief final para-
graph. This war is a symptom of a major historical transformation
which will pursue its inexorable course whether we like it or not—a
transformation toward a world that will be more socialized, more
planned, more internationally organized than the nineteenth-century
world that is fading out. But if we cannot prevent that transforma-
tion taking place, we can help to guide it. We can see that it is
achieved either in a totalitarian, Hitlerian, way, or in a democratic,
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