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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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of the Conference on Ageing, and then at 6 o'clock we went to a dinner sponsored by the Episcopalian Church on work and religion. This Episcopalian diocese had conceived the idea of getting Toynbee to make a speech on work on religion. We all adjourned to a large church where Marie, Averell and I sat on hard wooden chairs for an hour and a half with about a thousand people while he gave a really brilliant lecture on the origins of work and how Christianity and the early monks made work respectable, and consequently gave the impetus to respect for work that is common in Western Christian nations, a point I had never understood before and had always taken for granted, but he made it clear that in the rest of the world, in Roman and Greek times, work was done by slaves and respected people weren't supposed to work. The Christian point of view became as a result of the early monks, in the 5th Century--I think it was St. Bernadictine, but I can be wrong about the Saint--a part of the Christian creed and doctrine, that work was desirable and noble and good.

I thought it was a wonderful exposition of what had made the Western Christian world so successful in an economic and material way.


It's an interesting thesis to single out and explore.



Afterward, Toynbee and a few other people came back to

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