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DIE WELTKRISE ALS KULTURKRANKHEIT

ERNST STREERUWITZ
Sociologus
Vol. 9, No. 1 (1933), pp. 66-77
Published by: Duncker & Humblot GmbH
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/24755194
Page Count: 12
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DIE WELTKRISE ALS KULTURKRANKHEIT
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Abstract

The severe crisis from which our civilization is suffering is dangerous because the body social is not in possession of such forces as enable the body physical to react automatically against disease and illness. The totality of nations knows of no health-giving and spontaneous reaction against the dire evils that befall it. Co-operation of civilized peoples is as yet in a primitive and insufficient state of development because their struggle for territory still continues, and because there are still feeble and defenceless peoples. Organic bodies grow with differentiating organs which, however, are ready to co-operate. The League of Nations (which is, however, still inadequate) is the first feeble materialization of the tendenoy to instrument a world union. In spite of its institution there are violent struggles between political opponents, aims and actions. The continued unrestrained development of technique strengthens for its part the tendency towards a self-glorification which is still unopposed by enforced co-operation. In addition there are material deficiencies, e. g: overcrowding in cities, unequal settlement of agricultural districts throughout the world. The rigid enforcement of immigration restrictions after the war, as well as the seizure of Germany’s great colonies are further contributary factors towards this state of affairs. The same remarks apply to the efforts on the part of sparsely populated countries to make themselves as self-supporting as possible. As far as the best distribution of raw material and foodstuffs is concerned, co-operation among the nations of the world is necessary. The impossibility of utilizing products in the countries producing them, and an insufficient supply in the area of consumption destroy economic life in the former and restricts the progress of the masses in the latter. And such evils are even made worse by unrestrained speculation. It is absolutely necessary that technical progress should be treed from numerous evils such as the failures which have been an accompanying feature during the last two centuries. It is also noteworthy that during the economic crisis big undertakings proved less vital than middle-sized and small ones. It is only possible for Europe not to empoverish herself completely and become powerless if she developes into an economic unit where preferential tariffs between economically interdependent states would have to replace the present most-favoured nation clause. This is all the more necessary for the regeneration of Europe because world traffic commences already to follow routes that do not include Europe. The fact that no serious attempt has been made towards the solution of these and other general economic problems, among which is that of the best monetary system, increases the danger of the cultural disease from which the world is now suffering.

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