Page:Jean Jaurès socialist and humanitarian 1917.djvu/50

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JEAN JAURÈS

he will turn to a retail dealer, and will then have to bear the expense of a cumbrous and unnecessary organization of intermediary agents; or else he may go to a great store, where over and above the direct expenses of management and distribution he has to provide for the profit of ten or twelve per cent, on the capital invested.… He can neither work nor eat, clothe nor shelter himself, without paying a sort of ransom to the owning and capitalist class."

It was always present to Jaurès' mind that this inequality of wealth resulted in something worse than the physical deprivation of the workers. "The domination of one class," he says, "is an attempt to degrade humanity.… Justice … has come to signify that in every man, in every individual, humanity ought to be fully respected and exalted to its full stature." But it is of no use to talk of this unless we are ready to alter the structure of society.[1] "Now, true humanity can only exist where there is independence, active exercise of the will, free and joyous adaptation of the individual to the whole. Where men are dependent on the favour of others, where individual wills do not co-operate freely in the work of society, where the individual submits to the law of the whole under compulsion or by force of habit, and not from reason alone,

there humanity is degraded and mutilated."

  1. From Studies in Socialism. Trans, by M. Minturn.