Waking World

By Olaf Stapledon



WHATEVER merit there is in this book is largely due to the fact that I have had the benefit of criticism by several alert minds of very different stamp.

To Mr. Victor Gollancz's shattering comments on an earlier and abortive experiment I owe much. I thank him for the tonic.

To Mr. L. H. Myers, of Cambridge, who criticized the first version of many of the following chapters from a point of view remote from that of Mr. Gollancz, and differing from my own in the opposite direction, I owe more.

Mr. E. V. Rieu helped me at a late stage to see what was wrong with the book as a book, namely that it was not a book at all. He caused me a lot of extra work which, I hope, has produced not only unity but also the point and drive which was lacking.

Professor L. C. Martin, of Liverpool, gave detailed and most useful criticism of the whole. I tried hard not to call on him for help. Fortunately, though at the eleventh hour, I succumbed to the temptation.

To my wife I am indebted for careful work on the proofs, and many helpful suggestions.

Since most of the ideas here pieced together have been gathered from other men's writings, I have given a short bibliography of works which, amongst many others, I have found helpful in thinking about the various subjects treated. It will be noted that they are very diverse, and in some cases mutually repugnant.

I am indebted to Messrs. Victor Gollancz Limited for permission to use certain passages from my contribution to An Outline for Boys and Girls; and to Messrs. George Allen and Unwin Limited who have allowed me to plagiarize from my chapter in Manifesto.


I. The Scope of this Book

II. The World-Aim

III. The World To-Day

IV. Animal And Man

V. Personality and Society

VI. Art

VII. Modern Science

VIII.The Value and Danger of Modern Science

IX. History

X. Philosophy

XI. Religion

XII. Christianity and the Modern World

XIII.Man and Fate

XIV. World-Revolution?

XV. The Will for Change


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