Free read Germinal 106

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GerminalThe thirteenth novel in Émile Zola’s great Rougon Macuart seuence Germinal expresses outrage at the exploitation of the many by the few but also shows humanity’s capacity for compassion and hopeEtienne Lantier an unemployed railway worker is a clever b. Étienne Lantier Claude the painter's brother Nana the whore's brother Jacues the murderer's brother Gervaise the alcoholic's son I know this part of the Rougon Macuart family tree better than any other and each of the family members stands for a novel that sends a shiver down my spine of reading delight and sorrowful mourning over the human condition Germinal is a masterpiece in its own right but one can't help thinking of the social background of the young man wandering up the street in a French mining town in the beginning of the novel The tragic life experience he's already gathered being the son of Gervaise LantierCoupeau who drinks herself into delirium in the poor parts of Paris in L'Assommoir The Dram Shop whose daughter Nana ends up a prostitute whose other son Claude commits suicide when failing to deliver The Masterpiece he strives for whose third son is driven by murderous madness to commit unspeakable crimes Despite the family history Étienne Lantier is a decent man and a socially progressive thinker In the mining society he plunges into the life of a rising working class bound to the mine living under conditions that ultimately lead to strike and suffering The mine itself is a protagonist a scary modern monster swallowing human beings alive but spitting out most of them again marked for life by the Hades of profitability I spent some childhood years in a small community close to a famous copper mine in Sweden and one of the yearly school field trips led students down into the depth of the mine on a guided tour around the maze of former mining activity I will never forget the feeling of helpless panic when I first tried to imagine the unbearable heat close to the fires the pain in the bodies crawling into the narrow paths the physical exhaustion the lack of air the poisoned atmosphere the darkness the hunger Around the mine now part of UNESCO world heritage a small town grew with modern features such as health care and well organised administration But above all it was a living hell for the poor families trying to survive on minimum wages to fill the pockets of the owners who strove to rise on the social ladder Child labour is a crucial part of the story of Falu Rödfärg a product deriving directly from the mining business which eventually resulted in a strong national identification with the Swedish red wooden houses Whenever I see one of the many red houses in the neighbourhood I think of the paint that was produced as a by product of the copper mining and how it has become unconscious but lasting evidence of early Swedish industrialism to this daySo when I read Germinal for the first time I had a vivid real life experience to fall back upon to empathise with the characters When they went on strike found sole pleasure in promiscuity let anger take over their minds I KNEW why I still felt the cold dark mountain closing in on me I have been to the copper mine several times as a grown up taking students and my own children down into the underworld and now Zola's Étienne accompanies me every time and I relive the dramatic scenes over and over when he is trapped in the mine with Catherine Hardly imaginable that a love story could have an uglier darker setting but it remains one of my favourite scenes in world literatureAs for the social uestion despite its hopeful title Germinal doesn't solve anything The split between working masses and ownership is as wide as before when Étienne finally takes the road out of the small town again after a dramatic showdown Gaskell tried to find a solution in the engaging power of individuals linking the values of North and South in her masterpiece on social tension in England during the same era Nothing of the kind is offered the characters in Zola's novel and in a way that might make it a realistic attempt at showing the life conditions in 19th century industrial communities A true working class revolution according to Zola would fail because of the revolutionaries' inevitable transformation into oppressors should they happen to be successfulOui c'est votre idée à vous tous les ouvriers français déterrer un trésor pour le manger seul ensuite dans un coin d'égoïsme et de fainéantise Vous avez beau crier contre les riches le courage vous manue de rendre aux pauvres l'argent ue la fortune vous envoie Jamais vous ne serez dignes du bonheur tant ue vous aurez uelue chose à vous et ue votre haine des bourgeois viendra uniuement de votre besoin enragé d'être des bourgeois à leur placeThis mirrors Albert Camus' reflections on rebellion and revolution in human history L'homme révolté forever striving to take the role of his jailers thus producing new cries for justice which will end up dethroning him in an eternal violent movement As a description of 19th century life Germinal is unsurpassed in its earthly hell no need for a metaphysical one at all

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Free read Germinal 106 Â The thirteenth novel in Émile Zola’s great Rougon Macuart seuence Germinal expresses outrage at the exploitation of the many by the few but also shows humanity’s capacity for compassion and hopeEtienne Lantier an unemployed railway worker is a clever but uneducated young man with a dangerous temper Forced to take a back breaking job at LeMining community deteriorate even further Lantier finds himself leading a strike that could mean starvation or salvation for all•New translation• Includes introduction suggestions for further reading filmography chronology explanatory notes and glossar. Zola had a very structured techniue for the industrial production of novels he would decide on where the action would take place and who the principal characters would be Les Rougon Macuart gave him a family tree and a glorious mess of hereditary tendencies and illnesses to work within the setting would be interrogated thoroughly and mined out In researching Germinal Zola visited a coal mine and was intrigued by the big strong horses working underground how he asked did the mine company get the big horse down the narrow lift shaft The answer inevitably is the cruel one little foals go in but don't come out That reality is the undercoat to the novel that Zola stamps into being to mix metaphors horribly in a tragic mining accident of writing view spoiler I'll observe a minute's silence at some point for butchering my own sentences hide spoiler

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Ut uneducated young man with a dangerous temper Forced to take a back breaking job at Le Voreux mine when he cannot get other work he discovers that his fellow miners are ill hungry in debt and unable to feed and clothe their families When conditions in the. Within the first few pages of Zola's striking masterpiece I was completely sucked into his vision of the poverty suffering and slave driven folk of the mining world first published in 1885 it holds the power and importance for today As we start with young unemployed railway worker Etienne Lantier wondering the cold and punishing landscape of northern France in search of work and without a penny to his name is desperate to land just about anything that pays After stumbling into a small mining community during the night he is pointed towards the Le Voreux mine who may have an opportunity for him and after befriending the Maheu family where most of them are employees he soon discovers just what a hard life they truly live The way Zola goes into detail of the daily routine for the miners is both powerfully compelling and sualidly heart wrenching with shifts starting long before the break of dawn men women and children march off into the dark depths of the pits where the air is thick and stuffy and work exhausting in a matter of minutes most are black from head to toe with coal and sweating so much some of the weaker few can barely stand up in the eyes of Etienne they are all buried like moles under the crushing weight of the earth with burning lungs and little pay for their efforts while owners and bosses reap the rewards with a fine and wealthy standard of living and no interest in those who help line their pockets Over time Etienne sees this has got to stop things just can not continue in this way struggling to buy even the most basic food for survival and things only get worse when the company offers a new pay system that will see them less off Slowly Etienne starts to gather support from the workers for a strike a strike that would see the numbers go from the few to the hundreds to the thousands and cause massive repercussions for the chaos and mindless actions that are about to unfoldAt well over five hundred pages this was nothing short of epic and although the main theme running throughout is the lead up to the strike and beyond there is so much going on with many others in the community studied in just as much of a way that you really feel for the whole village Another thing to note that I couldn't uite believe is the amount of sexual tension between residents as even in times of complete despair and hunger they seem to be at it like rabbits in the bushes behind buildings and abandoned barns it felt almost worthy of a chuckle but generally the women are treated appallingly and there are those who lost their innocence without wanting it I guess from their viewpoint they may be poor starving and on the verge of death but sex is at least some joyful respite from their misery if only short lived After Etienne eventually moves in with the Mateu family I knew this would be a problem as he always had feeling for the pale and hard working daughter Catherine but she already had a brute and nasty man in Chavel the two would come to blows over her The pity for workers is only escalated when you see the sort of meals the rich fat cat bosses indulge in while the miners try to to beg steel cheat and sell household items just for a loaf of bread in the case of the Mateu's their home is almost striped bare in the end with not even a candle for warmth old grandfather Bonnemort is left staring at the walls coughing up black phlegm from years in the pits while the rest of the family who's minds are shattered just see death as their escape clause But it's the actions of the strike that I will never forget things get out of hand pretty uickly as the marching horde of hellbent miners go from mine to mine and cause utter carnage and maximum damage to the pits in a show of savagery all control is lost and a blood lust of frenzy takes hold even the women turn into crazed wild animals this is no longer a strike but a violent wave of terror the poor many against the wealthy few and when the owner of a local shop meets a gruesome end they now realize that a boundary has been crossed and there is no going back for this the middle third of reading was just about as engrossing as I have come across and compared to the earlier stages was unputdownable reading with one eye closed due to tiredness was the sign of something special Then there is some calm after the storm before a tense and claustrophobic finale left me reeling I am not one who really bothers with best of lists but if I did this would not be far from the top simply because it just about covers every emotion one could go through from reading a book