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THE BIOLOGICAL PROBLEM OF SEX. The Determination of Sex. By Dr. L. Doncaster. Pp. x+172. (Cambridge: At the University. Press, 1914.) Price 7s. 6d. net.


R. DONCASTER deals in a masterly way. with a problem as difficult as it is fascinating, and his book is a fine illustration of scientific method. He states a theory and presents the evidence, and when the reader has just begun to enjoy a sense of satisfaction, more facts are brought forward which show that the theory breaks down, and that we have still much to learn regarding the determination of sex. It is a pleasure to follow a discussion which is so keenly critical and at the same time open-minded. Those who know Mr. Doncaster's book on heredity will expect lucidity in his treatment of a cognate subject, and they will not be disappointed. He goes deeply into things, but it is all clear, including the glossary. The illustrations are interesting and instructive. An indication of the scope of the book may be given in the chapter-headings: The problem; the nature and function of sex; the stage of development at which sex is determined; sex-limited inheritance; the material basis of sex-determination; the sex-ratio; secondary sexual characters; the hereditary transmission of secondary sexual characters; hermaphroditism and gynandromorphism; general conclusions on the causes which determine sex; the determination of sex in man. The author does not deal with the subject in its entirety, the case of plants, for instance, being deliberately left out, but selects for illustration and discussion the lines which seem to him most promising.


Dr. Doncaster's general position may stated. In some cases sex appears to be determined already in the unfertilised ovum, for maleproducing and female-producing ova are formed. In other cases sex seems to depend on the spermatozoon, and to be fixed at fertilisation; thus, to take a simple case, the unfertilised ova of the hive bee develop into males, and there are many instances now known of two kinds of spermatozoa differing in respect of their chromosomes. In a few cases there is evidence that sex may be modified during embryonic development or even later. Many facts point to the conclusion that a sex-determining factor sometimes resides in special sex chromosomes, and is inherited like a Mendelian character (as was first suggested by Bateson and by Castle). Individuals which receive it from both parents would be of one sex; those

to which it is transmitted by one parent only would be of the other sex.

But the author goes on to point out that there are many facts which do not fit in with this theory. There is evidence that the ovum may influence the sex in cases in which observations on the chromosomes indicate that the sex should be determined by the spermatozoon; and there is evidence that the sex may in some cases be modified after fertilisation by influences acting on the embryo or some later stage. Therefore the author is inclined to give up the simple hypothesis of an unchangeable hereditary entity, the presence of which always causes one sex and its absence the other. He supposes that sex is dependent on a physiological condition of the organism, depending on the interaction of certain chromosomes with the protoplasm of the cells, and therefore determined, in the absence of other disturbing factors, by the presence or absence of these particular chromosomes. But where the determination expressed by the chromosome difference is not decisive, other conditions may have their influence. "Put in different words, every germcell would bear a sex-determining factor, but when this factor has relatively small intensity of action, its effect may be counterbalanced by other causes which alter the physiological relation on which sex-determination depends."

As to Man, the evidence from the study of chromosomes is at present unsatisfactory, but it is maintained by some that Man is one of those species in which the male has one chromosome less than the female; all the ova contain an X-chromosome (supposed to have a sex-determining function), while half of the spermatozoa have it and half have not. When two X-chromosomes are present in a fertilised ovum it develops into a female; when only one, into a male. But apart from the chromosomes, there are some other facts which point to the conclusion indicated. The most important of these is the sex-limited transmission by the male, as seen in the inheritance of colourblindness, night-blindness, and hæmophilia. "If a man transmits certain characters always or nearly always to his daughters, the conclusion can hardly be avoided that he produces two kinds. of germ-cells, female-producing which bear the factor for these characters, and male-producing which do not." If sex in man is determined solely by the spermatozoon, "there is no hope either of influencing or of predicting it in special cases." But if the ovum has some share in the effect, as some other facts suggest, if there are two kinds of ova, or if the physiological condition of the ova is alterable, the possibility of influencing the sex of the offspring through the mother is not

excluded. The author regards "the control of sex in Man as an achievement not entirely impossible of realisation."

As regards the differences between the sexes, with which the author is not specially concerned in this volume, the view is entertained that "the physiology of the female is relatively anabolic, that of the male catabolic in character. That this should be so is perhaps a necessary consequence of the difference in function between the sexes. . . . It is interesting to speculate, however, whether the active, vigorous habits of the male and the restless movement of the spermatozoon on the one hand, and the quieter habit of the female and the passivity of the egg on the other, may not each be due to fundamental catabolic and anabolic tendencies, characteristic of maleness and femaleness, quite apart from the exigencies of reproduction."

This speculation is luminous and interesting, but we should have liked it better if reference had been made to the fact that it was advanced more than a quarter of a century ago by Prof. Patrick Geddes. It may be, however, that this is just another illustration of great minds thinking alike.

X-RAYS AND CRYSTALS. X-Rays and Crystal Structure. By Prof. W. H. Bragg and W. L. Bragg. Pp. vii+229. (London: G. Bell and Sons, Ltd., 1915.) Price 7s. 6d. net.


BOOK in which are gathered together the

results so far obtained in the new field of

research concerning X-rays and crystals is particularly welcome at the present time, and especially from Prof. Bragg and his son. For not only have they carried the subject very much further than its initiators, Drs. Laue, Friedrich, and Knipping, but they have also given us an entirely new mode of experimenting. Indeed, in the hands of the English observers the investigation has already borne surprisingly important results, both as regards experimental confirmations of the views of crystallographers based on crystal measurement and as regards the nature of the X-rays themselves. The book will be gladly received by all who desire to explore the possibilities of the new method of attack, as it affords much-needed detailed descriptions of the apparatus employed, and instructions for its use.

The photographic diffraction method of Laue only receives a relatively small amount of attention, as the Bragg method, which involves the use of the X-ray spectrometer, is shown to be much more capable of affording indications of the internal structure of the crystal in the more complicated cases. It is clearly shown, how

ever, that the two methods are mutually complementary, and lead to essentially the same result, with the advantage of detail on the side of the spectrometer, and permanence of record on the side of the photographic radiogram.

The whole subject is still so fresh that it might have been considered premature that a book should yet be written concerning it. But the results obtained already are so clear, and the stage reached may so truly be said to be one at which the initial difficulties have been overcome in the simpler cases tackled, that this book is in reality fully justified, and should prove of great use in attacking the immense difficulties which are presented by the more complicated crystalline chemical compounds. It may be that our first transports over the opening-up of so remarkable a new field of research may have to be modified, as it appears to be only capable of yielding unmistakably intelligible indications in the very simple cases, those of the chemical elements and their binary and ternary compounds, and not to be generally capable of indicating hemihedrism. For Friedel has shown that only eleven different types of radiogram are afforded by the thirtytwo classes of crystals. It was hoped that it might throw a clear light on the much-discussed Pope-Barlow conception of valency, as dependent on the relative volumes of the spheres of influence of the various elementary atoms in a crystalline compound. But so far the indications are not favourable to that theory, and have led its propounders to doubt the value of the X-ray results. The chief substance studied which has afforded indications is the diamond, the analysis of which with the aid of the X-ray spectrometer is perhaps the most brilliant piece of work carried out by the Braggs. Whatever its indications may be as to the nature of the packing of the atoms and the sizes of their spheres of influence, there can be no doubt that the structure arrived at in the case of this, the most interesting, form of carbon is one which must commend itself both to the crystallographer and to the organic chemist as bearing the impress of truth.

The book will be found to afford much information concerning the properties of X-rays, as revealed by the Bragg spectrometer, and details of the investigations of all the simple crystalline substances which they have studied by its aid. The main work of the authors has been to show that the different orders (first, second, and third) of reflection, at the specific angles for maximum effect experimentally found for certain "monochromatic" X-radiations, correspond to reflections from different sets of planes among the whole parallel series of planes of atoms present in

the part of the crystal penetrated by the rays, that is, to consecutive planes, alternate planes, and sets composed of every third plane; and from the intensity (if present) or absence of the different orders of reflection most important conclusions have been derived as to the constitution of these several planes of atoms, that is, as to the distribution in them of the atoms of the different chemical elements present in the crystallised substance. Moreover, the actual distances apart of the planes, and therefore of the contiguous atomis, have been calculated.

As regards the crystallographic bearing of the work described in this book, it may be unhesitatingly affirmed to afford ample confirmation of the structure of crystals which has been accepted during the last decade, as being indicated by the combined results of the work of experimental crystallographers and theoretical geometricians; this is certainly true so far as that structure has been authoritatively stated in such works as the latest edition of von Groth's "Physikalische Krystallographie," Miers' "Mineralogy," or the "Crystallography and Practical Crystal Measurement" of the writer of this review. It thus proves up to the hilt the solid ground-work on which the science of crystallography is now built, while throwing little light upon, and giving as yet no countenance to, the more speculative theories which are the matter of current discussion. It reveals crystallography more than ever as the handmaid of chemistry, and enhances a hundredfold the necessity for a much more universal study of crystals than has hitherto been recognised. Crystallographers are deeply grateful to Prof. and Mr. Bragg for their highly interesting and timely book.



My Life. By Sir Hiram S. Maxim. Pp. ix + 322. (London: Methuen and Co., Ltd., 1915.) Price 16s. net.

Twording the first

O write in the first person singular is not the English temperament; even the best autobiographies annoy us, and the more we admire a man the sorrier do we feel when reading his life. Therefore it is thought to be better "form" to let a friend write one's life. But if we are to know Sir Hiram Maxim, we must listen to him telling his own story in his own way; we must not only bear with him when he shows pride in his performances, we must try to sympathise with him. He is a naturalised British subject; he was knighted; he is known in good society; he has received many orders and honours

and hospitality from our own and foreign rulers. He is proud to be a British subject, and we are proud of the reasons he has given in this book for his change of citizenship, but in every line he shows that he is an American. He reveals himself as no Englishman dare do, but if the reader will only call to mind the fact that there are other formulæ of behaviour than his own, he will find the book well worth reading.

Sir Hiram Maxim was born in 1840 in the State of Maine; he had very little school education; he had a childhood and youth full of hard work. We know from many sources the conditions of young life sixty years ago in Maine and the New England States. In many ways it resembled the conditions in country places, not in England, but in Scotland and the North of Ireland, only that in Maine there were no rich people and there were few who were even moderately well to do. There was almost no money; wages were paid in kind, in orders upon shops for provisions. Everybody had a rather hard life full of manual labour, and therefore young Maxim did not in the least repine at his lot, which might seem to some of us a very hard lot. He is still proud of his muscular strength, which is greatly due to the work of his youth. He recounts with pride how, when quite young, in woodwork, lathe work, and work with various hand-tools to which he was sometimes unaccustomed he greatly outstripped other and much older workmen. Whatever chances of school there were he seized, in spite of long working hours. In Maine and Canada there was little skilled labour, so that the ingenious, energetic young man found that he could make a reputation quickly in any trade that he took up, and he succeeded in many trades, even in what may elastically be called landscape painting.

To such a boy everything gave occasion for thought and invention, and the inventions which he seems to be most proud of are those early inventions with which his name is not much connected now. Many of them have been greatly developed, but he reaps no share of the large fortunes that they have created. He had plenty of opportunity of studying human nature. He was evidently always abstemious himself, but he even had the experience of tending a drinking bar for a short time. He was peace-loving, but he was compelled on many occasions to show that he could fight, and he seems to have been a fine fighter. He gives few dates, and his age when any particular event happened can only be guessed at very roughly. This does not much matter, because at the age of twenty and at the age of forty he was the same independent, optimistic

youth, eager for work and invention, gradually becoming skilled in the use of the best tools in doing fine metal work, able to turn his hand to glass-blowing and draughtsmanship and half-adozen other arts, with a good working knowledge of chemistry, electricity, and other parts of physics; he was always proud of his strength and health.

He made many inventions: mousetraps, gas machines, sprinklers to put out fires, a steam trap, locomotive head-lights, incandescent platinum and carbon electric lamps, the electric regulator for which he received the Légion d'Honneur; he demagnetised watches, and did many other interesting things. He relates many amusing anecdotes which illustrate the condition of things fifty years ago in Canada and the northern and also in the southern States.

He was probably thirty-eight when he discovered that heating carbon in a hydrocarbon atmosphere caused carbon to be deposited in a very hard form; we are not sure that he really claims the method of "flashing" a carbon filament by keeping it hot in a hydrocarbon atmosphere, but the suggestion of a claim is evident. About the age of forty he was greatly engaged in the manufacture and use of dynamo machines, and he exhibited excellent lamps at the Paris Exhibition of 1881. Soon after this, in London, he invented and exhibited his automatic gun; a single barrel which discharged more than six hundred ordinary rifle shots per minute, and for the next twenty years his time was mainly taken up in developing automatic guns of greater sizes. He records some of the praise which has been bestowed upon his gun; no praise can be too great for it. We remember a toast which was drunk enthusiastically in London when the news of a certain conquest had just been published "To the Conqueror of Matabeleland, Hiram Maxim.".

He made discoveries about gunpowder and other

fellow directors seem occasionally to have thought that there was a loss of dignity in his allowing advertisements to appear of such things as his inhaler for asthma, and scientific friends deplored his "prostituting his talents on quack nostrums." His own comment upon this is that from their point of view the invention of a killing machine was very creditable, but it was a disgrace to invent an apparatus to prevent human suffering. Just so, there are the two points of view. All through his life Sir Hiram was keen upon inventing anything that might be useful. He does not feel a loss of dignity in describing how he invented a simple, thoroughly good method of giving a proper surface to a black-board in a school, and he is no more ashamed of advertising his inhaler than of advertising his gun.

His experience of lawyers and business men in America seems to make him rather bitter towards Americans. It is gratifying to find him saying: "The reception that I received in England and the straightforward honesty of the gentlemen with whom I had to deal, gave me a very favourable opinion of the English character." J. P.


(1) William James and Henri Bergson: A Study in Contrasting Theories of Life. By Dr. H. M. Kallen. Pp. xi + 248. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press; London: Cambridge University Press, 1914.) Price 6s. net.

(2) The Mirror of Perception. By L. Hall. Pp. 129. (London : Love and Malcomson, Ltd., 1914.) Price 2s. 6d.

(3) What is Adaptation? By Prof. R. E. Lloyd. Pp. vii+ 110. (London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1914.) Price 2s. 6d. net.

(4) The Story of Yone Noguchi: Told by Himself. Pp. xi+255. (London: Chatto and Windus, 1914.) Price 6s. net.

OT the least useful contribution to philo

explosives. He seems to be the first inventor of (1) Tophy made by William James was a explosives. He seems first

He describes all these

things, but does not seem to think them of much more importance than his experiments on the roasting of coffee.

He seems to have been the first to see clearly how a flying machine might be made to work, and spent a very great deal of money in driving inclined planes horizontally through the air by means of an engine and air propellers, so that there should be sufficient vertical lifting force upon the planes. His machine did lift, and he seemed to be succeeding slowly, but his real difficulty was in the great weight of engine required. The invention of the petrol engine easily made the aeroplane a real flight machine. His


negative one, viz., the ignoring of the traditional antithesis between reality and appearance. This antithesis may safely be said to have been the original sin of metaphysics since meditation began, and James's philosophy may most fruitfully be studied from this starting-point. The older philosophers, logical and static, discriminated between appearance and reality "in one or all of the compensatory terms of God, freedom, immortality, and cosmic unity"; and later, “in response to the pressure of rapidly growing sciences, men faced fact, only to change it in such wise as thereby to satisfy the inner need for logical consistency." But James "insisted

that each event of experience must be acknowledged for what it appears to be, and heard for its own claims. To neither doubt nor belief, datum nor preference, term nor relation, value nor fact, did he concede superiority over the others. . . . Pure experience knows no favourites. He admits into reality. . . evil as well as good, discontinuities as well as continuities, unhuman as well as human, plurality as well as unity, chance and novelty as well as order and law."


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Though between James and Bergson there is no little spiritual sympathy, a profound difference exists in the methodology of the Weltanschauung of each thinker. "Where," says Dr. Kallen, "Bergson beholds a universe, James sees a multiJames is a democrat in metaphysics. Bergson, on the contrary, is a monarchist. For him the distinction between appearance and reality is aboriginal and final. For James it is secondary and functional." For James, "being is neutral," and he ignores, practically, the difference between "being" and "not being." Hegel laboriously proved them to be the same. James deals with reality just as it comes to cognition. Reality to him is "alogical," as Dr. Kallen puts it. Kant began the attack on logical metaphysics, inventing "epistemology" to assist him. towards a locus standi. He, no less than any of the ancients, would have nothing to do with "common-sense reality." And no one expects any philosopher to consider it. But, to return to Bergson and his notion of philosophical reality, it is remarkable with what élan the French thinker embraces his self-found "truth." It is durée réelle (pure duration), a poussée formidable (a formidable thrust), the élan vital (the onrush of life); but its eternal enemy is matter and space, which distort it and by which it is distorted. Bergson's "flux" is a richer concept than that of Heraclitus, but it is of the same order. You would expect him to prefer instinct to intellect. But no one nowadays would place intellect, reason, first in the cosmic hierarchy. Both Bergson and James have contributed to this result. From the pragmatist point of view truth is "what we live by"; "common-sense, religion, art, and science are tools and modes of life, and therefore pragmatic." But, for Bergson, "truth is absolute," and his "truth" is vitalism writ large, after a course of Plotinus, Driesch (?), and Darwin.

(2) It is somewhat stimulating to find a disciple of Berkeley crying in the wilderness of to-day. Mr. Leonard Hall puts forward a "metaphysical theory" which is "a particular form of psychophysical parallelism, in which it is maintained that the physical world is the appearance, or image,

of the psychical world, in the distorting mirror of perception" (my italics). It is a clever tour de force, though it is apparently quite serious. Granted the major premiss, everything comes out satisfactorily. Mr. Hall commences with the old antithesis of appearance and reality, and argues that "the initiating cause of all perceptions of the same material body is, not the body itself, but a reality of which the body is the image in the distorting mirror of perception." For Berkeley the initiating cause was God; for modern science "the initiating cause of all perceptions of the same body is the body itself," which, by the way, is not the case; science does not dogmatise here. Material bodies are "unreal . . . they are the transfigured appearances, or images, of underlying realities. Further, according to this theory, space is unreal, a material body, like the image of an object in a mirror, being in unreal space.' Mr. Hall concludes that every organism, from the protozoa upwards, is a "mind"; that man is the super-conglomerate of "minds," and that this hypothesis of summated minds explains evolution and the organic world.

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(3) Prof. Lloyd has written a suggestive little book on adaptation. The proposition of the selection theory that "competition causes evolution" was made in order to explain adaptation and life in general. It regards organisms as fitting into something, which is called their environment, . . . and that this correspondence was brought about by the elimination, from the one side, of all that would not fit." But adaptation, according to Prof. Lloyd, does not, any more than life, require explanation. It is the teleological bias of man, the machine-maker, that institutes the wonder which leads to design, purpose, and adaptation theories. But adaptation is "its own explanation, since an unadapted thing could not live."

(4) The Weltanschauung of many philosophers has been based on æsthetic axioms. And in his way the artist is a philosopher; "the marbles of Phidias and the philosophy of Plato... obey the same impulse and express the same will—an impulse to make over unsuitable realities into satisfactory ideas, a will to remodel discordant nature into happy civilisation." The reminiscences of the Japanese poet, Mr. Yone Noguchi, are a case of aesthetic pragmatism. "Do you know," he says, "I am a shy, without-knowledgeof-the-world poet"? All his experiences have been acquired from the point of view of beauty. His description of Chicago is a good example. "Smoke means Chicago as flower means Japan; money means Chicago as art means Japan."


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