Original Repository: Oregon State University. Library. Ava Helen and Linus Pauling Papers
Reproduced with permission of the Ava Helen and Linus Pauling Papers. Oregon State University Library.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Congresses as Topic
Two Nobel Prizes
November 28, 1945
Having a few hours with no urgent claims on them I am venturing to sit down a list of possible topics for consideration by
the committee. I gathered from the discussion yesterday afternoon that members felt that the best contribution of the three
institutions -- California Institute of Technology, Mount Wilson Observatory, and the Huntington Library -- could make to
the present problem of international affairs would be (a) a conference of well-known experts drawn from outside as well as
inside the institutions; (b) a volume of essays on subjects related by their bearing on international affairs today; (c) a
series of lectures or informal talks primarily for members of the institutions. In all three, the treatment should be practical
not abstruse or antiquarian. The aim throughout would be to instruct the intelligent laymen on the present situation, to
explain how it came about and to suggest the way out. To adapt Bernard Shaw, we want an intelligent layman's guide so
international affairs that will be at once comprehensive and comprehensible. Few people realize how many strands make up
the pattern of foreign policy, how many interests which may conflict or be allied there are, urging a government to adopt
this or that design. To make UNO successful nations have to be convinced that their common interests are greater than their
rivalries. Peace like war has to be organized. Mere passivity or pious sentiments will not suffice. Fear of the consequences
of war will not be a permanent deterrent -- unless the lessons of history are all wrong. Something positive must be substituted.
Peace may be no more than armed peace -- a purely negative thing meaning no more than there is no war actually in progress.
To last, peace must be active and involves co-operation to secure benefits that nations will not lightly hazard by aggression.
The conference, lectures, essays should all be directed towards a definite program for peace and should go on to indicate
how that program can and should be carried out, with emphasis on the immediate steps to be taken. To plan a Utopia for 2,000
A.D. will help little if at all during the next crucial years. The time is so short.
The following is a list of possible topics:
(a) International Relations, their machinery and nature (political, cultural, economic)
(b) Geographical factors in International Affairs (Isaiah Bowman)
(c) National philosophies or ideologies in relation to war
(d) Traditionalism -- Monroe Doctrine and isolation for United States, balance of power for Europe
(e) Nationalism -- economic nationalism could be treated here or separately; UNO and possible changes.
(f) Imperialism -- backward peoples could be treated here or separately
(g) General world trends
(h) International exchange
(2) Tariffs, etc.
(i) General -- new organization set up in London
(j) Science -- many topics, agriculture, industry, nutrition, medicine, armaments, psychology and mass education. These could
also be treated under other headings.
(k) Literary relationships, from the angle of spreading knowledge of other peoples
(l) The Press
(n) Propaganda -- either separately or under (1) and (m).
(IV) Morality and Religion
(o) General -- common ideals, missionary efforts, etc.
(q) Co-operations against social evils, slavery, white slavery, drugs, etc.