what perplexes every man today in every walk of life is the extraordinary complexity of modern life as compared with the life in the midst of which our grandfathers found themselves, as compared with the life in the midst of which the generation immediately preceding ours found itself.
The life of the present day is incalculably complex, and so many of its complexities are of recent rise and origin that we haven’t yet had time to understand just what they are or to assess the values of the new things that have come into our life.
Not only is life infinitely complex in our day as compared with the previous age, but learning is correspondingly complex.
philosophers from the beginning have said of this complex and interesting game we are playing. That is the field of philosophy.
You cannot tell whether he can do it until he has made the effort. I do not know of any other way of bringing out a mind than by obliging the person who is alleged to have one to use it; that is the only way in which you can determine whether he has one.”
The Meaning of a Liberal Education (1909)
by Woodrow Wilson
Papers of Woodrow Wilson, 18:593-606