Education: The Old Libel

History students persist in some strange ideas about the economic past. Thomas S. Ashton, professor of economic history at the London School of Economics, has come to this conclusion from reading student examinations. Last week, in an essay called The Treatment of Capitalism by Historians? * Ashton told what some of these ideas are—and roundly denounced them as a tired old libel of the capitalist system.

First of all, Ashton says, "there is a shadow . . . cast by the grievances—real or alleged—of workingmen who lived and died a century ago. According to a large number of the scripts [examinations] which...

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