Posted 5 years ago on Feb. 7, 2012, 11:50 a.m. EST by flip
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The year 1993 marks the bicentennial of the assassination of the French revolutionary leader Jean-Paul Marat. What Marat represented has never been expressed more movingly than in these lines by Victor Hugo:
“They said Marat is dead. No. Marat is not dead. Put him in the Pantheon or throw him in the sewer; it doesn’t matter—he’s back the next day. He’s reborn in the man who has no job, in the woman who has no bread, in the girl who has to sell her body, in the child who hasn’t learned to read; he’s reborn in the garrets of Rouen; he’s reborn in the basements of Lille; he’s reborn in the unheated tenement, in the wretched mattress without blankets, in the unemployed, in the proletariat, in the brothel, in the jailhouse, in your laws that show no pity, in your schools that give no future... Oh, beware, human society: you cannot kill Marat until you have killed the misery of poverty.