Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1932. First Edition. Essays on ethics by the then-President of Harvard University. Lowell occupied the Presidency from 1909 to 1932. Perhaps inevitably given the turbulent times and his own Brahmin upbringing, he managed to find himself consistently on the wrong side of history: in 1922 he moved to ban African-Americans from Harvard's residence halls; in 1926 he instituted the now-famous quota system for Jewish applicants to Harvard; and in 1927 he was part of the three-person advisory committee that inexplicably ruled that the anarchists Sacco and Vanzetti had received a fair trial, a judgment which earned him the enmity of intellectuals the world over. The present book, written in the final year of Lowell's tenure at Harvard, was perhaps intended as an apologia for his controversial positions. But Lowell's lightly-reasoned pronouncements on the economic, political and philosophical controversies of his time do little to rehabilitate his image -- they amount to what might be called, in today's parlance, "mansplaining." Uncommon in the first edition, especially signed. Octavo. Red cloth boards, lettered in gilt on spine; 161pp. Signed by Lowell on front endpaper, with his address (possibly his own copy). Very mild external wear; bit of sunning to spine; internally free of markings or other evidence of use. A Near Fine copy, lacking the dustwrapper. (Inventory #: 31266)
The history, literature, and art of American social movements, including Civil Rights, Feminism, Labor History, Radical Politics, and Counterculture.
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