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Full text of "Man In The Modern World"

population of any great modern nation? How can there be ar
"Anglo-Saxon race," a "German race," a "French race," and still
less a "Latin race," or an "Aryan race"? Historically, all the greal
modern nations are well known to be conglomerations and amalga-
mations of many tribes and of many waves of immigration through-
out the long periods of time that make up their history. This ma)
be well seen in southern France, where in Provence the Greek colonies
of Marseilles and elsewhere became, at a very early date, integral
parts of the population of Gaul. More familiar examples are to be
found in the population of the British Isles, which has been made up
from scores of waves of immigrants from the third millennium B.C.
until the present time. Britain has thus been a melting-pot for five
thousand years. Among the more modern waves was that of the
Huguenot refugees, who fled from France to the eastern counties oi
England, and formed 5 per cent, of the population of London aftei
the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and the Flemish settlers whc
came at a somewhat earlier date to South Wales. Both have long
ceased to be separate groups, and those who number Huguenots and
Flemings among their ancestors cannot be distinguished among the
extremely complex mixture which forms the population of the country,
In particular it may be stated that, from the earliest prehistoric times
to our own, the wealthy and densely settled south-eastern part oJ
England has been the recipient of wave on wave of immigration from
the Continent. The existence of anything that can be called a "race3:
under such conditions is mere fantasy.
The special form of group-sentiment that we call "nationality,'3
when submitted to analysis, thus proves to be based on something
much broader but less definable than physical kinship. The occupa-
tion of a country within definite geographical boundaries, climatic
conditions inducing a definite mode of life, traditions that gradually
come to be shared in common, social institutions and organizations,
common religious practices, even common trades or occupations—
these are among the innumerable factors which have contributed in
greater or less degree to the formation of national sentiment. Of very
great importance is common language, strengthened by belief in a
fictitious "blood-tie."
But among all the sentiments that nurture feelings of group unity,
greater even than the imaginary tie of physical or even of historic
relationship, is the reaction against outside interference. That, more
than anything else, has fostered the development of group-conscious-
ness. Pressure from without is probably the largest single factor in
the process of national evolution.