chapter  II
TOTAL WAR AND TOTAL EDUCATION
Pages 15

Having thus marshalled all its forces, Society focuses them all on one point and directs them to one end. We are familiar with the direction of men and women into the work which is considered at once most appropriate to them and most conducive to success in the national effort. This direction has been carried out much more scientifically than in the last war ; it has been given more careful and sympathetic attention ; and there have accordingly been fewer misfits and less wastage of ability and power. Work "according to age, ability, and aptitude" has been the aim, and it is suggestive in our context that these words of the Education Act should be appropriate. But it is not only individuals who ha.ve been directed. Similar direction has been applied to groups and to institutions. There has indeed been a considerable development in group life : new groups, often cutting across the old social distinctions, have been formed, and new lessons have been learnt of the effectiveness of group action as opposed to individual action. But these groups have been formed for service and not for profit ; there is a new egalitarianism at the profit end of life, and a new competitiveness at the service end ; the former is largely the result of rationing, of the development of social services, and of a new sense of social justice bred of evacuation experiences : the latter is largely emotional, but is no less effective for that. The subordination of the group to the common purpose, coupled with the preservation of its distinctive identity, has been tried out in many forms and with varying degrees of success (the party-truce and the continuance in office of a national Government provided the most signal example of this) : on the whole, encouraging possibilities have been revealed. On a larger scale, such experiments may. lead to a nobler patriotism-a patriotism which means devotion to a country for what it can give, and not for what it can get, and a valuation of the national heritage for the contribution which it can make to the heritage of mankind. It is germane to this consideration of the direction given both to individuals and to groups in total war, to reflect on two Platonic conceptions : first, that the claims of the individual and of the citizen are not conflicting when the

Total war, again, is characterized by being the business of the whole community, and not of any one or more sections of it, or only of one generation. The community is seen as a partnership not only in things subservient to the gross animal existence of a temporary and perishable nature : it is a partnership in all science : a partnership in all art: a partnership in every virtue and in all perfection ; and as the ends of such a partnership cannot be obtained in many generations, it becomes a partnership not only between those who are living, but between those who are living, those who are dead, and those who are to be born.1 Horizons are widened, the continuity of history is dimly apprehended, and we feel a responsibility, and try to discharge it, not only to our contemporaries, but to our predecessors and to our successors : this last is perhaps the most deeply felt,

Finally, it is characteristic of total war that the " colour of our after-life" claims more attention than in the wars, limited in their objectives and in their impact, of the past ; and it claims more and more attention as the war goes on. When a war is fought by a professional army for a limited territorial objective, war-aims and peace-aims are indistinguishable, they are easily grasped and they may seem to concern but little the whole body of the people. But when the war is fought by that whole body, and when it is fought not for a strip of territory but for a way of life, when it becomes not a territorial war but an ideological war, then a distinction is commonly drawn (whiCh may be sometimes artificial) between war-aims and peace-aims, and the latter assume an increasing importance as the former come within sight of achievement. War-aims may be easily defined, with a certain deceptive simplicity, as final victory and unconditional surrender; but these are dead-ends and barren conceptions ; and the question·" What next? " becomes pressing and insistent. It is a question, moreover, which every man and woman is bound to ask, for upon the answer there depends for every citizen his chance of winning the fruits of his discomforts, his labours, and his suffering. Nor is this all. The definition of peace-aims becomes a formidable weapon in achieving war-aims, and the early distinction between the two is seen to be misleading and suffers a progressive obliteration ; to define peace-aims may well determine the date of the enemy's surrender, as happened with the publication of President Wilson's Fourteen Points in 1918; it certainly determines the vigour with which the people prosecute the war, and thus brings the date of final victory nearer. Total war acquires a dangerous and self-generating. momentum of its own, and this can only be arrested by a clearer conception of total peace. It is for this reason among others that Ministries of Reconstruction are set up, that a White Paper is published on the health services of the nation, that plans are set on foot for international co-operation, that an Education Act is passed while the sounds of battle are in our ears, and that a plan for Social Security becomes a best-seller. The breath of life comes into the dry bones of final victory and unconditional surrender ; the

TOTAL WAR AND TOTAL EDUCATION rg breath is an inspiration, and the life is the life that every man, woman, and child hopes to live.