Friday, May 15, 2009

Reading Notes

- From Germinal, a novel about a French miners’strike of the 1890s, by Emile Zola,
“ Who could say that the workers had had their reasonable share in the extraordinary increase in wealth and comfort during the last one hundred years? They (the bourgoisie) had made fun of them by declaring them free. Yes, free to starve, a freedom of which they fully availed themselves.”
- Re how capitalism works, “ Ah! There we are!” cried M. Hennebeau.(mine owner) “I was expecting that – the accusation of starving the people and living by their sweat. How can you talk such folly, you ought to know the enormous risks which capital runs in industry – in the mines, for example?…Can you believe that the company has not as much to lose as you have in the present crisis? It does not govern wages; it obeys competition under pain of ruin.”- i.e. blame the system, not the capitalist.

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