Addams's Argument in Newer Ideals of Peace


Critics have questioned the extent to which Newer Ideals of Peace is in fact about peace, rather than domestic social reform.  I argue that the book is fundamentally about peace; this becomes clear when we approach it as Addams's response to the dominant peace advocates of the time.  While Addams and these peace advocates shared the conceptual paradigm and vocabulary of nineteenth century social evolutionary thought, particularly that of Herbert Spencer, in Newer Ideals Addams uses these conceptual tools to argue against the conclusions of Spencer and the peace advocates.  The paper presents Addams's argument in terms of two theses:

Thesis I: The then current stage of industrialism was not peaceful because survivals of militarism continued to function in institutions of government, industry, and international commerce.

Thesis II: Dynamic, transnational social forces were at work that could provide a moral substitute for war and thus help society progress from the stage of industrialism to a further stage of humanitarianism, which would be an era of international peace.

Addams's Argument in Newer Ideals of Peace

Marilyn Fischer, Ph.D., University of Dayton

How can we make sense of Newer Ideals of Peace?   Even some of Addams's closest associates questioned the extent to which Newer Ideals of Peace is in fact a book about peace.  Florence Kelley, close friend and long-time colleague at Hull-House, wrote in her review, "The title of Miss Addams's volume is not altogether a happy one.  The book is . . . 'a curious commentary on the fact that we have not yet attained self-government.'"  Allen Davis, in his 1973 biography of Addams, advanced the same critique.  "Much of the book is not about war and peace, but about the plight of the cities–the immigrants, the working women and children."  In an otherwise appreciative review, George Herbert Mead wrote, "One does not feel, in reading Miss Addams, the advance of an argument with measured tread.  I think in logical organization this book suffers more than her earlier writing" [1]

In contrast to such critics, I will argue that the book is fundamentally and throughout a book about peace, and that the chapters on domestic reform function as essential parts of Addams's argument.  The underlying structure of the book and the role of these chapters become clear when we approach the book as Addams's response to the dominant peace advocates of the time.  I will argue that while Addams and these peace advocates shared the conceptual paradigm and vocabulary of nineteenth century social evolutionary thought, particularly that of Herbert Spencer, in Newer Ideals Addams uses these conceptual tools to argue against the conclusions of Spencer and the peace advocates.

This task is less straightforward than it may appear.  To her editor's request to include more citations in Newer Ideals, Addams replied she had assumed "that the book was to be kept popular and colloquial in style rather than exact and scholarly."[2]  She does not name Spencer or many of the theorists or theories with which she works; she refers to the advocates of peace fleetingly and rarely.  In proposing the following construction of her argument, I interpret what she says in light of contemporary historical events and the people and texts with which she was acquainted.


Addams sets the terms of the debate in the book's first sentence: "The following pages present the claims of the newer, more aggressive ideals of peace, as over against the older dovelike ideal."[3]  The book is an analysis of the deficiencies of the older ideals that peace advocates had advanced in two ways.  The first was an appeal to pity, made via artistic depictions of the horrors of war.  The second was an appeal to prudence.  Addams specifically cites economist Jean de Bloch's argument that war had become too costly to serve any longer as a method for settling international disputes.[4]

Who were these peace advocates to whom Addams was responding?   She met with many of them at the Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, held in Boston in October 1904.[5]  Some of these peace advocates, members of the Universal Peace Union and the Peace Association of Friends, emphasized non-resistance.  However, the dominant voices at the Congress offered more "practical" approaches to peace.  These were elite representatives of international law and commerce to whom international peace was fully consistent with political, economic, and social conservatism and with full national sovereignty.[6] 

The international lawyers, led by men such as Nicholas Murray Butler, President of Columbia University, and Elihu Root, Secretary of War under McKinley and Secretary of State under Theodore Roosevelt, focused their practical activity on developing international legal institutions, ranging from arbitration treaties, to a formal and permanent world court.[7]  Their orientation was to "convert international conflicts into cases,"[8] and thus avoid considering international conflict as embedded in social, economic, or political contexts. At the Universal Peace Congress, some of the speakers described their efforts with rhetorical flourish.  Pointing at the Permanent Court of International Arbitration recently established at The Hague, Oscar Straus, a United States' member of the Court, called it "the most enduring humanitarian achievement of the ages," the "Magna Charta of International Law," and "an International Covenant on the Mount."[9]  Business leaders such as industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, publisher Edwin Ginn, and banker George Foster Peabody stressed how wasteful and disruptive war was to international commerce and how international commerce created and sustained fruitful interdependence among nations.[10]  At the Congress John Lund of Norway likened international trade routes to blood circulating in the body, and just as vital to keep open.  Economist Edward Atkinson envisioned the trajectory of world progress moving toward "the day . . . when the ships that pass between this land and that shall be like the shuttle of the loom, weaving the web of concord among the nations."[11] 

Most of these "practical" peace advocates assumed Herbert Spencer's evolutionary framework for social change.  It is difficult to remember today how enormously influential Spencer was in nineteenth century Britain and the United States.  In Social Darwinism in American Thought, Richard Hofstadter (in 1944) pointed out, "Although its influence far outstripped its merits, the Spencerian system serves students of the American mind as a fossil specimen from which the intellectual body of the period may be reconstructed."[12]  Spencer coined the phrase, "survival of the fittest," and was the founder of Social Darwinism.[13]  To understand Addams's critique of these peace advocates we need to review Spencer's definitions of militarism and industrialism.

In Principles of Sociology Spencer uses the terms "militarism" and "industrialism" to designate pure theoretical types of social organization.  Few purely industrial societies ever existed; most societies have been a mixture of both militant and industrial social organization.  A "militant" society is one that is organized principally around meeting external threats.  The primary characteristic of both military and civilian organization is centralized, hierarchical control.  Spencer writes that in the military, in religion, in civic governing structures, and in the household, "all are slaves to those above and despots to those below."[14]   People whose traits or activities are not warlike are treated with contempt.[15]  Economic self-sufficiency of the group is important, as dependence on trade with outside groups could weaken the society's ability to survive during times of war.[16]  Spencer observes that under militarism private associations in commerce, culture, or philanthropy are rare and individual initiative is suppressed, as these break the power of the central controlling hierarchy.  He defines social interaction as based on "compulsory cooperation."[17]  The industrial part of a militant society, that is, that part concerned with perpetuating the life of the group, he calls "a permanent commissariat."  Women have low status because they do not fight.  As non-combatants, women's function is to supply the needs of the military for food, equipment, and new recruits.[18]

An industrial society is one principally structured to sustain its members.[19]  Rather than hierarchy and status determining people's roles, relations are voluntary and based on exchange and contract.  Such societies tend toward democratic governance via elections and representation, with government's role in society being highly restricted.[20]  Individual freedoms and rights, humane sentiments, and respect for others, including women and children, characterize the society.  The society is flexible and adaptable; it is likely to engage in peaceful trade with other groups.[21]

Spencer did think that in the past militarism had contributed to civilization's advance, through creating complex systems of governance and production.  But he thought that civilization had reached the point where continued militaristic social organization was counterproductive, particularly by hindering liberty and the development of altruistic sentiments.  Further social evolution depended on peace, and the cessation of war.[22]

Many of the practical peace advocates Addams addresses in Newer Ideals agreed with Spencer's evolutionary trajectory of the progress of civilization from militarism to industrialism.  They worked to create an industrialism characterized by laissez-faire economics in industry and international commerce.  In their view, international legal institutions would settle international disputes, while international commerce would help to foster peaceful interdependence.[23]


Addams argues that the efforts of these peace advocates were of limited value because of their faulty understanding of industrialism.  She advances the following thesis:

Thesis I: The then current stage of industrialism was not peaceful because survivals of militarism continued to function in institutions of government, industry, and international commerce.

Addams frames Newer Ideals with Spencer's vocabulary and evolutionary perspective.  Throughout the book Addams gives many references to evolutionary theory, stating that we should adopt "the modern evolutionary standpoint" and heed the lessons of "evolutionary science."[24]  Early in the book she expresses this evolutionary paradigm by quoting British philosopher and journalist L.T. Hobhouse, who wrote,  "Universal and permanent peace may be a vision; but the gradual change whereby war, as a normal state of international relations, has given place to peace as the normal state, is no vision, but an actual process of history."[25]  She agrees that we are in the stage of industrialism, locates the origins of industrialism with the rise of the middle class, and identifies the modern city as "a stronghold of industrialism."[26]

One reviewer of Newer Ideals wrote, "This antithesis between militancy and industrialism will be recognized by students as having been borrowed from Herbert Spencer's works, but it is given an application which would have astonished that philosopher."[27]  Addams uses Spencer and the peace advocates' vocabulary and concepts against their own conclusions by adopting a different methodology.  She claims that they hold their positions as creeds, employing "the a priori method of the schoolmen."  For this she will substitute "the scientific method of research."[28]  As a sociologist and a pragmatist, Addams insists on testing theories in light of observation and concrete experience.  She gives particular attention to those at the bottom of society, specifically immigrants and the urban poor, with special focus on women and children. The operative question is: as a matter of daily, lived experience, do those at the bottom experience industrialism as a time of peace?[29]          

In making her critique Addams employs the notion of "survivals," a term from British evolutionary anthropologist, E.B. Tyler.  Trying to understand why cultures exhibit customs and beliefs which have no or even maladaptive evolutionary value, Tyler hypothesized that such practices provided clues to previous stages in social evolution.  In the past these practices had served an evolutionary function, and then continued to persist as "survivals" of an earlier age.[30]  In Newer Ideals Addams argues that basic social institutions of the day were laced through with survivals of militarism.  Exhibiting the characteristics of hierarchical control and contempt for those in inferior positions, these institutions cannot lead to peace.  In this section we will look at how she identifies survivals in the principal arenas of industrialism that Spencer and the peace advocates claimed as leading to peace: limited government and laissez-faire economics in industry and international commerce.

Survivals of Militarism in Government

Addams argues that in spite of the rhetoric of liberty and natural rights, municipal and national governments in the United States contain survivals of militarism and thus function militaristically.  Noting how central militarism is to the United States' sense of identity, Addams observes, "Having looked to the sword for independence from oppressive governmental control, they came to regard the sword as an essential part of the government they had succeeded in establishing."  While Jefferson proclaimed that "all men are created free and equal," Addams argues that the founders in fact adapted the Anglo-Saxon aristocratic pattern of developing governmental laws and structures that primarily protected the property, and hence the privilege, of the rich against the poor.[31]

The ideals of the founders were doctrinaire and non-empirical, their language of liberty and rights merely served to mask the people's lived reality.  Jefferson's "natural man" with "in-born rights," Addams claims, is a phantom.[32]  In Addams's time, 75% of Chicago's population were immigrants or children of immigrants.[33] While some had come for political freedom, most came primarily for economic reasons.  Promised a land of freedom and equality, their new lives were better characterized by continual industrial exploitation.  Addams argues that those in power continue to cling to cramped governmental ideals, assuming that the franchise and Constitutionally defined rights would meet all the immigrants' needs.  In the immigrants' experience, however, government and law were essentially repressive and punitive rather than being expressions of their own voices as public participants.[34]

To show how this militaristic strain manifests itself, Addams analyzes city and police corruption and corresponding reform efforts, identifying survivals of militarism in both.  A small example:  By law, the saloons are closed on Sunday.  Local folks know that for many immigrants, the saloon is as much a social gathering place as a site of temptation.   Local entrepreneurs keep the saloons open during the forbidden hours, paying off the local police and aldermen.  These local government officials, understanding the issue from the neighborhood's point of view, possess the very human combination of kindness and personal weakness.  The corruption, which is at first based on some kindness and understanding, deepens and thickens.  The crusading reformer comes along, with grand rhetorical flourishes about eliminating vice and the vicious.  After all, in the military mentality, law-breakers are enemies.  As Addams points out, these reformers most often come from the business classes and are more attuned to safe-guarding property than to seeing how the law cramps the normal life impulses of the people.  She writes that it is contemptuous for those with political power to make decisions on behalf of people they do not know.  Echoing Spencer, she writes that such contempt is a "survival of the spirit of the conqueror toward an inferior people."[35]

A second example: Chapter 7, "Utilization of Women in City Government," can be read as an argument for granting women the right to vote in municipal elections and hold positions in city government.  What is interesting for our purposes is that Addams interprets women's lack of the franchise as a manifestation of militarism.  She cites a reason commonly given at that time that the original function of the feudal city was to protect people from external threats, so the franchise was given to male soldiers as the ones responsible for defense.[36]

The modern city, by contrast, is industrial in Spencer's sense of the word.  It is organized as a vast, interdependent whole, functioning for the "sustentation of the group" and at the time, largely independent of government regulation.  Its problems are industrial problems: Addams lists them as "insanitary housing, poisonous sewage, contaminated water, infant mortality, the spread of contagion, adulterated food, impure milk, smoke-laden air, ill-ventilated factories, dangerous occupations, juvenile crime, unwholesome crowding, prostitution, and drunkenness."   The maladjustment here is that these problems concern everyone, yet the mechanism for addressing them, the franchise, is assigned based on militaristic assumptions, even though military prowess is irrelevant to solving the city's problems.[37]

Addams gives an account of women's traditional labors, using anthropological theories current at the time.[38]  From early days of tribal life when almost all economic activity was domestic, women were responsible for health, sanitation, textile and food production, and so on.  Modern industry takes these traditional responsibilities away from women and the domestic sphere and moves them into the modern factory.  This change creates new hierarchies of wealth and power and reduces women to a state of dependency.  To deny women the franchise because they do not defend the city militarily, continues the hierarchy and contempt of militarism.  In this context, gaining the municipal franchise would give women the tools and opportunities they need to resume their historic responsibilities and regain control over the conditions of their labor.[39]  Interestingly, most of the chapter is about industrial conditions and women's widespread participation in industry.  Addams's hope is that giving women the vote will be an important step in ameliorating labor conditions with protective legislation.[40]

Survivals of Militarism in Industry

Here Addams goes right to the heart of industrialism.  She argues that private property in the means of production, which Spencer envisioned as the foundation of laissez-faire capitalism, is itself a survival of militarism.  Addams sees a direct, clear analogy between the powers of control private property gives factory owners over workers' lives, and hierarchical control under militarism.   She writes, "The possessor of the machine, like the possessor of arms who preceded him, regards it as a legitimate weapon for exploitation, as the former held his sword."[41]  Addams suggests that had industrial machinery been considered social rather than private property, many of the all too evident and wide-spread industrial abuses of her day such as inadequate wages, child labor, monotonous work, and dangerous workplaces, might have been avoided.[42]

            In spite of advances in industrial relations made through negotiation and arbitration, Addams saw employers and unions at times exhibiting "group morality," a survival from tribal times.  Each side defines morality in terms of loyalty to its own group, viewing those outside as threats.[43]   The militaristic survivals embedded in these opposing moral stances are particularly and destructively present during times of labor tension and strikes.  She characterized the 1905 Chicago teamsters' strike as "street warfare" with employers and the unions "engaged like feudal chiefs with their recalcitrant retainers."[44]  As strikes continue, racial animosity is enflamed as strike breakers are brought in, the public itself becomes divided, greatly increasing the probability that violence rather than fair-minded negotiations will settle the disputes.[45]

While Spencer and others advocated minimal government involvement in industry, Addams identifies survivals of militarism which show how government and industry work in tandem under the existing industrialism.  In Chapter 6, "Protection of Children for Industrial Efficiency," Addams illustrates the repressive, militaristic stance of both government and industry toward children.  She gives many specific examples of how police, ignoring children's developmental needs for education and recreation, interpret children's vitality as something to repress rather than something to foster.  Addams points out the irony: both government and industry show their contempt by their tolerance for child labor, not recognizing how this practice stunts physical growth and health and denies education and development of abilities to their own future citizens and workers.[46]

Militarism in International Commerce

In May 1903 Addams wrote to Richard Ely, editor of Macmillan Library Series, which would publish Newer Ideals, "The book moves slowly, but I hope to get at it a little later.  Hobson has really said it all in his 'Imperialism' which seems to me to be a very masterly presentation of moral and economic claim."[47]  Addams uses Hobson's analysis of imperialism in identifying militaristic aspects of international commerce.  With Hobson she argues that much of international commerce at the time was not free trade "weaving a web of concord among nations"; rather, it provided the justification for, and the impetus behind imperialism.

The historical context for Hobson and Addams was late nineteenth century European and American imperialism.  The rate and success of European imperialism was staggering.  Between 1876 and 1914 a handful of European nations gained colonial control of one-fourth of the world's landmass, primarily in Africa and Asia.  Britain added four million square miles; France added 3.5 million.[48]  The acquisition methods were often unspeakably cruel, made unspeakably efficient by the machine gun.  Justifications for imperialism were heavily tinged with Social Darwinism, and ranged from nationalism, to economic viability, to the duty to civilize and Christianize non-white populations, to being necessary for maintaining European, masculine vigor.[49]  The United States got into the act, annexing Hawaii, and acquiring Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines in 1898 following the Spanish-American War, and maintaining military and economic control over an ostensibly independent Cuba.[50]

In his highly influential analysis of late nineteenth century European and American imperialism, British journalist John Hobson interpreted imperialism as a deviation from the evolutionary path toward peaceful progress.[51]  Hobson entered the debate regarding the economic value of imperialism by arguing that imperialism is extremely advantageous to just one sector of the business community, but harmful to other interests in the home country.[52]  The taproot of imperialism, he claims, is the search for foreign investment.  Capital accumulates faster than the nation can absorb it, so financiers look for foreign opportunities.  Once investments are made, investments need to be protected.  Using their political clout at home, financiers bring the power of government to protect their investments, to further their investments, and to find new locations for investment.[53]

Hobson argued that this explanation applied equally well to the United States, observing,   "The adventurous enthusiasm of President Roosevelt and his "manifest destiny" and "mission of civilisation" party must not deceive us.  It is Messrs. Rockefeller, Pierpont Morgan, Hanna, Schwab, and their associates who need Imperialism . . . .  (T)hey desire to use the public resources of their country to find profitable employment for the capital which otherwise would be superfluous."[54]

This expansion of investment proceeds by wars abroad, and has devastating effects on the home country's domestic agenda.  Hobson explains that as expenditures for armaments and the military dominate the budget, social reforms in education, housing, and labor conditions are neglected.  The mystique of militarism infiltrates people's patterns of thought and action.  Patriotic myths are taught as history in the schools.  Religion turns imperial and sends its missionaries to civilize and Christianize the heathen.  The press is owned by or dependent upon the very financial interests that fuel imperial expansion.  Representative government becomes increasingly irrelevant as foreign policy rests in the hands of an unelected few.  The institutions so vital to democracy become masks in the service of imperial domination.[55]

With the Spanish-American War a fresh memory, Addams did not need to search for survivals of militarism in international commerce.  Here, militarism, "the philosophy of force," was fresh and explicit.  This explanation and defense of militarism was advocated by Germans such as Bismarck, Von Moltke, and Treischke, and by British such as Karl Pearson.[56]  Theodore Roosevelt's "manifest destiny" was an American version of the same vision.  In a speech to the Naval War College, Roosevelt told his audience, "All the great masterful races have been fighting races. . . . No triumph of peace is quite so great as the supreme triumph of war."[57]  Addams responds to those who claim this "war spirit" is "interwoven with every fibre of human growth and is at the root of all that is noble and courageous in human life, that struggle is the basis of all progress, that it is now extended from individuals and tribes to nations and races." She reminds her readers that while courage and energetic response are admirable qualities, war as a method of social change is "clumsy and barbaric" and will not advance "the great task of pushing forward social justice."[58]  International commerce, she writes, "has been the result of business aggression and constantly appeals for military defense and for the forcing of new markets."  Addams identifies such commerce as "the modern representative of conquest."[59]

Her comments could have been directed at fellow anti-imperialists such as Jordan, Carnegie, and Atkinson, as well as at explicit imperialists such as Theodore Roosevelt.  At that time the dominant debate regarding the Spanish American War and imperialism was more a debate over whether the Philippines should be made a United States' colony, than over the morality of expansionist foreign policy and commerce.  Most of the dominant peace advocates were blind to the connection between economics and imperialism.  Jordan, for example, had praised the American capitalists' "peaceful conquest of Mexico."  He had opposed colonizing the Philippines, thinking that its inhabitants could not become civilized and were incapable of self-government.[60]

Addams brought the question squarely back to morality and democracy.  She had argued in a speech to the Central Anti-Imperialist League in April 1899, that militarism "can never be made a democratic instrument."[61]   When such militaristic international commerce contributes to national prosperity, people are apt to "take the commercial view of life" and define national success in terms of business profits.  As evidence for how the moral basis of democracy is lost, Addams points to the contempt businesses show for the workers at home, particularly immigrants, when they are unconcerned with their workers' low standard of life.[62]

Pairing international commerce with governmental military aggression also damages the possibility of democracy in the invaded country.  Addams responds to the argument, frequently made by imperialists and by some anti-imperialist peace advocates of the time, that Europe and the United States were bringing the blessings of civilization to the unenlightened.  To do this with military force, Addams argues is counter-productive.  "Militarism enforces law and order and insists upon obedience and discipline, assuming that it will ultimately establish righteousness and foster progress. In order to carry out this good intention, it first of all clears the decks of impedimenta, although in the process it may extinguish the most precious beginnings of self-government and the nucleus of self-help, which the wise of the native community have long been anxiously hoarding."[63]

At the end of Newer Ideals Addams defines peace, not as "an absence of war, but the unfolding of world-wide processes making for the nurture of human life."[64]  That is, for Addams, peace is defined in terms of structures of social justice.  By pointing out survivals of militarism under industrialism, with their hierarchical control and contempt, she has identified structures of social injustice that even in the absence of war, hinder the nurturing of human life.


Newer Ideals is a hopeful book.  Along with the critique given above, Addams advances a second thesis:

Thesis II: Dynamic, transnational social forces are at work that can provide a moral substitute for war and thus help society progress from the stage of industrialism to a further stage of humanitarianism, which would be an era of international peace.

There are several points of continuity between Addams's 1902 book, Democracy and Social Ethics, and Newer Ideals of Peace.  Both books deal with social reform, arguing that communities and civic and national governments should be engaged in ensuring standards of decent well-being for all inhabitants.  Both books put forward the same conception of social democracy as a form of associated living, extending to communities and industry, as well as to political institutions.  Responding to needs, developing capabilities and powers, and fostering cooperative methods of addressing concerns with affection and respect for all its varied members are the hallmarks of social democracy.[65] 

There is an additional continuity in that both books employ a parallel form of argument, a parallel that in Newer Ideals further confirms that it is fundamentally a book about peace.  In Democracy and Social Ethics Addams argues that because society has evolved into an era of urban industrialization, a corresponding evolution in morality is needed.  People need to move from individual morality, characterized by individual virtues, to social morality, or social democracy, in which the social point of view is paramount.  Throughout the book Addams gives evidence that the poor and oppressed, and particularly recent immigrants, are already making this adjustment.  In Newer Ideals of Peace Addams presents a parallel argument: that we need to move from nation-centered patriotism and nationalism to a cosmopolitan humanitarianism and internationalism.  In her 1899 speech to the Anti-Imperialist League, Addams made this point succinctly.  "Unless the present situation extends our nationalism into internationalism, unless it has thrust forward our patriotism into humanitarianism we cannot meet it."[66]  Throughout Newer Ideals Addams claims that such a humanitarian stage is beginning to emerge out of industrialism and gives evidence that the poor and oppressed, particularly recent immigrants, have moved quite a ways along this trajectory.[67]

The Newer Ideals: from Industrialism to Humanitarianism

At the 1904 Universal Peace Congress in Boston, Addams and William James both spoke at the closing banquet.  In Newer Ideals Addams refers to James's speech there, writing, "An American philosopher has lately reminded us of the need to 'discover in the social realm the moral equivalent for war–something heroic that will speak to men as universally as war has done, and yet will be as compatible with their spiritual natures as war has proved itself to be incompatible."[68]  These emerging humanitarian ideals, Addams claims, meet James's criteria.  These ideals are indicative of forces that are "strenuous" and "aggressive."  For the heroism of war, they will substitute the heroism "which pertains to labor and the nourishing of human life," evolving toward a time when "virile good-will will be substituted for the spirit of warfare."[69]

Addams refers to this new, emerging stage of humanitarianism, variably as "an enlightened industrialism," an "enlarged industrialism," "a rising tide of humanitarianism," and even "cosmopolitan humanitarianism."[70]  This is a stage that seeks "that which will secure the health, the peace of mind, and the opportunity for normal occupation and spiritual growth to the humblest industrial worker, as the foundation for a rational conduct of life adapted to an industrial and cosmopolitan era."[71]

Humanitarianism as Transnational

Addams claims that these newer ideals of peace are emerging in several different international arenas.  She sees manifestations of these ideals based on "a new vital relation–that of the individual to the race."[72]  Democracy and Social Ethics stressed social morality among members of a local or national community; Newer Ideals explicitly extends the scope of community to the international arena, encompassing all of humanity.  For twenty-first century readers, the term "transnational" is more appropriate than "international."  For Addams, the nation-state was not the primary unit of analysis; "international" to her did not refer to a collection of separate, sovereign states.  She saw many community groupings, in addition to nation-states, forming cosmopolitan, transnational ties and acting upon humanitarian ideals.[73]

In Newer Ideals Addams gives particular attention to how these ideals were emerging among immigrants in urban communities, such as the one where Hull-House was located.  Addams gives several reasons why immigrants are likely to recast their ideals and sensibilities toward internationalism and humanitarianism.  Immigrants from disparate nations, stripped of the contexts of traditional village life, gather into tightly congested, urban settings.  They are "reduced to fundamental inequalities and universal necessities of human life."  Using the vocabulary of social evolutionary theory, Addams writes that they need, simultaneously, to reconstitute tribal bonds of compassion and to break through tribal bonds to attain cosmopolitan relations.[74]  Because they are in the midst of dealing with such a cultural transition, they have "an unusual mental alertness and power of perception."  Addams sees among the immigrants countless acts of kindness toward each other, repeatedly exhibiting "an unquenchable desire that charity and simple justice shall regulate men's relations."[75]   In such neighborhoods Addams finds evidence that nationalistic patriotism is being reconfigured into internationalism.  "They are really attaining cosmopolitan relations through daily experience," Addams notes, and forecasts the implications for international peace. "We may then give up war, because we shall find it as difficult to make war upon a nation at the other side of the globe as upon our next-door neighbor."[76]

It isn't only among immigrants to the United States that Addams sees evidence of the newer ideals.  Addams was in close correspondence with social justice reformers in other nations and points to protective legislation from many nations as evidence that the newer ideals are emerging internationally. She cites the international effort to eliminate tuberculosis, efforts in Germany, Australia, and elsewhere to respond to the needs of the elderly, and efforts in England and on the European continent to regulate dangerous occupations.[77]

Addams also sees evidence of new humanitarian ideals guiding the labor movement, in spite of or alongside the survivals of militarism she finds there.  Unions at the time were working toward fair wages and decent, safe working conditions, the sorts of provisions for humane life with which government ought to be concerned.  Through union activity workers had many more opportunities for democratic discussion and decision-making than they had in political arenas.  This was particularly true for working women, who at the time, could not vote in federal elections and only spottily in municipal affairs.  Also, unions were quite conscious of the burdens war imposes upon the working classes.  Addams notes the resolution of the International Association of Workingmen to call for a universal strike among workers in case of war.[78] 

In all the examples given above, these humanitarian ideals give Addams a way to articulate the clear link she sees between social justice and peace.  This realization marks a clear difference between Addams's newer ideals of peace and the ideals of the practical advocates of peace.  As members of business and legal elites, they benefited from and in some cases actively perpetuated institutions and practices of social injustice. The practical peace advocates understood "international" as the arena in which separate, independent, sovereign nations met to work through differences either through war or through diplomacy.  Their advocacy of international legal institutions was meant to strengthen the alternatives to war available to these states without threatening their independence or sovereignty. They did not consider unjust practices within sovereign states or by non-state actors as germane to questions of peace.[79]

Addams projects that if these newer, humanitarian ideals are deepened and made more active throughout the world, the strictures of nationalism will be transformed into a peaceful internationalism.  Like James, Addams admires the patriotic virtues of self-surrender and high enthusiasm.  However, these virtues need to be detached from a militaristic nationalism with its tribal attachment to arbitrary borders, and attached to humanitarian commitments on an international scale.  Admitting the term sounds absurd, Addams offers "cosmic patriotism" as one way of articulating this transformation.[80] 

At the end of the book Addams brings in a Bible passage, very familiar to peace advocates, to underscore the relation between peace and social justice.  She interprets the Prophet Isaiah's call to turn swords into plowshares, writing, "He founded the cause of peace upon the cause of righteousness, not only as expressed in political relations, but also in industrial relations."[81]  This underscores just how radical her peace proposal is and how deeply she believes that social justice and peace must go hand in hand if we are to have either. Newer Ideals of Peace is an extended argument to make exactly that point.

[1]  Kelley's review (1907) can be found at The Jane Addams Papers, 1860-1960, ed. Mary Lynn McCree Bryan (Ann Arbor: University Microfilms International, 1984), Addendum 11:201. The Microfim collection is referred to as JAPM, the Jane Addams Papers, Microfilm. Allen F. Davis, American Heroine: The Life and Legend of Jane Addams (Chicago: Ivan R. Dee, 2000),146.  George Herbert Mead, "Review of Newer Ideals of Peace," (1907) in Jane Addams's Writings on Peace, Vol. 1, Newer Ideals of Peace. Eds. Marilyn Fischer and Judy D. Whipps (Bristol, UK: Thoemmes Press, 2003), 171.

[2]    JAPM 4:1478, October 15, 1906.    

[3] Addams, Newer Ideals, 7. 

[4] Newer Ideals, 7-8.  Addams names Tolstoy and Verestchagin as appealing to pity.  Jean de Bloch's book, The Future of War, was cited many times at the 1904 Universal Peace Congress.

[5] Her three speeches can be found in Jane Addams's Writings on Peace, Vol. 4, Addams's Essays and Speeches on Peace. Eds. Marilyn Fischer and Judy D. Whipps (Bristol, UK: Thoemmes Press, 2003), 31-37, and in the Official Report of the Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress (Boston: The Peace Congress Committee, 1904), 120-123, 145-147, 261-262.

[6] For a discussion of peace societies advocating non-resistance, see David S. Patterson, Toward a Warless World (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1976), 3-5; For discussions of "practical" advocates of peace see Sondra R. Herman, Eleven Against War (Stanford, California: Hoover Institution Press, 1969), 16-19; Merle Curti, Peace or War: The American Struggle, 1636-1936 (Boston: J.S. Canner & Company, 1959), 206-207. C. Roland Marchand, The American Peace Movement and Social Reform, 1898-1918 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1972), chapters 2-3. 

[7] Marchand, The American Peace Movement, chapter 2; Herman, Eleven Against War, chapter 2. 

[8] Herman, Eleven Against War, 24.

[9] Oscar Straus, "Address," Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 62, 63.

[10] Marchand, The American Peace Movement, 86; See the address by Samuel B. Capen, Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 84-87.

[11] John Lund, "Address," Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 104;  Edward Atkinson, "Address," Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 109.

[12]  Richard Hofstadter, Social Darwinism in American Thought (Boston: Beacon Press, 1983), 32; Addams makes three references to Spencer in Twenty Years at Hull House (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1990), 200, 231, 236, none of them complimentary. 

[13] For an extensive discussion of the development of Spencer's Social Darwinism, see Robert C. Bannister, Social Darwinism: Science and Myth in Anglo-American Social Thought (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1979), especially chapter 2.

[14] Herbert Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 1, Part 2 (New York: D. Appleton and Co., 1896), 546.

[15] Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 2, part 2, 596.

[16] Ibid., 577.

[17] Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 1, Part 2, 552. 

[18] Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 2, Part 2, 549.

[19] Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 1, Part 2, 552.

[20] Spencer did not consider socialist or communist societies to be industrial, because they are structured on the basis of "compulsory cooperation." The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 2 part 2, 604.

[21] Spencer, The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 2, Part 2, 607ff. 

[22] Ibid., 663-665.

[23] .For extended discussions of Spencer's influence in the United States, see Robert C.Bannister, Social Darwinism: Science and Myth in Anglo-American Social Thought (Philadelphia, Temple University Press, 1979), and Hofstadter, Social Darwinism, chapter 2.  For discussions of Spencer's influence on the practical peace advocates, see Marchand, The American Peace Movement, 83; Curti, Peace or War, 119-120, 127.

[24] Addams, Newer Ideals, 60, 35.

[25] Addams, Newer Ideals, 8; the quotation is from L.T. Hobhouse, Democracy and Reaction (London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1904), 199.   

[26] Addams, Newer Ideals, 101, 89. 

[27] The review was published in Baltimore, Feb. 16, 1907.  The review is hostile to Addams, and very hostile to sociology.  JAPM Addendum 11: 0217.

[28] Addams, Newer Ideals, 7, 18.

[29] For an excellent discussion of Addams's pragmatism, see Charlene Haddock Seigfried's introduction to Addams, Democracy and Social Ethics (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2002).  For a discussion of Addams's involvement with Chicago sociologists of the time, see Mary Jo Deegan, Jane Addams and the Men of the Chicago School, 1892-1918 (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Press, 1990).  

[30] Tylor, Edward Burnett.  The Origins of Culture (New York: Harper & Row, 1958), 16. (Part I was originally published as Primitive Culture in 1871.)  

[31] Addams, Newer Ideals, 23, 28, 31.

[32]  Addams, Newer Ideals, 21, 34.     

[33] Victoria Bissell Brown, The Education of Jane Addams (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004), 212.

[34] Addams, Newer Ideals, Chapter 2.

[35] Addams, Newer Ideals, 29, 32-34.

[36] Addams, Newer Ideals, 89.   This argument was commonly used at the time.  See Marchand, The American Peace Movement, 200-201.  Spencer held this position, see The Principles of Sociology, Vol. 1, Part 2, 757.

[37] Addams, Newer Ideals, 90.

[38] This account can be found in Otis Tufton Mason, Woman's Share in Primitive Culture (NY: D. Appleton and Co., 1898).  

[39]  Addams, Newer Ideals, 100-101.  

[40] Addams was Vice-President of the National American Woman Suffrage Association for five years.  Unlike many of her colleagues at the time, she does not base her argument for women's suffrage on equal rights, nor on the separate spheres' assumption that women will be able to purify politics.   Instead, Addams argues that women should have the franchise because they have the experience and the expertise to attend to the city's industrial problems.  It is a matter of being given the tools that dealing with these industrial problems requires.

[41] Addams, Newer Ideals, 74.

[42] Ibid., 74.

[43]  Addams, Newer Ideals, 63.

[44] Addams, Newer Ideals, 66-67.

[45] Addams, Newer Ideals, 70-71.

[46] Addams, Newer Ideals, 80-82.

[47]May 3, 1903, JAPM 4:600.

[48] Eric Hobsbawm, The Age of Empire: 1875-1914, New York: Vintage Books, 1987), 59. 

[49] Hobsbawm, Empire, Chapter 3.

[50] Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States, (New York: HarperCollins, 1995), 303-304.

[51] Hobson, Imperialism, 10-11.

[52]  Ibid., 51.

[53] Ibid., 60.

[54] Ibid., 82-83

[55] Ibid., 228-234.

[56] See Barbara W. Tuchman, The Proud Tower (New York: Ballantine Books, 1994), 243, 249-50, and Niall Ferguson, Empire (New York: Basic Books, 2003), 261.

[57] quoted in Zinn, A People's History, 293.  Roosevelt criticized Addams's argument in Newer Ideals, stating, "Militarism is a real factor for good or for evil in most European countries.  In America it has not the smallest effect one way or the other; it is a negligible quantity."  In Addams, Newer Ideals, 174-175.

[58] Addams, Newer Ideals, 103-104.

[59] Addams, Newer Ideals, 59.

[60] Quoted in Patterson, Toward a Warless World, 76-77.  See David Starr Jordan, Imperial Democracy (Boston: Women's Educational and Industrial Union Leaflet #8, 1898), 3-4.

[61] Addams, Essays and Speeches, 3. 

[62] Addams, Newer Ideals, 59. 

[63] Addams, Newer Ideals, 107.

[64] Ibid.,115. 

[65] See, for example, Addams, Newer Ideals, 28, 39, 49.    

[66] Addams, Essays and Speeches, 1. 

[67] Addams, Newer Ideals, 12.  Others used this same vocabulary.  On page 13 of Newer Ideals Addams cites Adna Ferrin Weber, who used the same vocabulary in The Growth of Cities in the Nineteenth Century (New York: Macmillan, 1899), 434.  Weber cites British philosopher  John S. Mackenzie who also identifies the age of humanitarianism with legislation for personal welfare, and identifies industrialism with laissez-faire capitalism. See John S. Mackenzie, An Introduction to Social Philosophy (Glasgow: James Maclehose & Sons, 1890), 78-81.

[68] Quoted in Addams, Newer Ideals, 16.  James's original speech is in "Address," Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 266-269.

[69] Addams, Newer Ideals, 9,12,16,17.  Thomas Carlyle, whom Addams studied extensively, articulated this vision of peace.  See Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress, 83.

[70] Addams, Newer Ideals, 115, 74, 52, 41.

[71] Ibid.,14. 

[72] Ibid., 14.

[73] Herman refers to Addams's sense of internationalism as "community internationalism," Herman, Eleven Against War, 7-10 and Chapter 5.  Hansen classifies Addams as a "cosmopolitan patriot," along with James, Dewey, Debs, DuBois and others.  See Jonathan M. Hansen, The Lost Promise of Patriotism: Debating American Identity, 1890-1920, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003), xiv.

[74] Addams, Newer Ideals, 11.

[75] Addams, Newer Ideals, 12, 11.

[76] Addams, Newer Ideals, 14.

[77] Addams, Newer Ideals, 16-17; 93.  For documentation of Addams's long association with social justice feminists in Europe, see Kathryn Kish Sklar, Anja Schuler, & Susan Strasser, eds. Social Justice Feminists in the United States and Germany: A Dialogue in Documents, 1885-1933 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1998).

[78] Addams, Newer Ideals, 58.

[79] Herman, Eleven Against War, 40-41.

[80] Addams, Newer Ideals, 106, 115.  James used the term "cosmic patriotism" in another context in The Varieties of Religious Experience (1902) (New York: The Modern Library, 1994), 52.

[81] Addams, Newer Ideals, 115.  Addams mentions in the text that Isaiah's prophesy was referred to at the Thirteenth Universal Peace Congress.  The irony is that the practical peace advocates used Isaiah's words to support their proposals for international arbitration, and not, as Addams does, to support social justice reforms in industry.