THE ECONOMIC PROCESS
Too Long; Didn't ReadLet me try now and make some sort of general picture of the American nation as it impresses itself upon me. It is, you will understand, the vision of a hurried bird of passage, defective and inaccurate at every point of detail, but perhaps for my present purpose not so very much the worse for that. The fact that I am transitory and bring a sort of theorizing naïveté to this review is just what gives me the chance to remark these obvious things the habituated have forgotten. I have already tried to render something of the effect of huge unrestrained growth and material progress that America first gives one, and I have pointed out that so far America seems to me only to refresh an old impression, to give starkly and startlingly what is going on everywhere, what is indeed as much in evidence in Birkenhead or Milan or London or Calcutta, a huge extension of human power and the scale of human operations. This growth was elaborated in the physical and chemical laboratories and the industrial experiments of the eighteenth and early nineteenth century, and chiefly in Europe. The extension itself is nothing typically American. Nevertheless America now shows it best. America is most under the stress and urgency of it, resonates most readily and loudly to its note.