Upton Sinclair, ed. (18781968).
The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Literature of Social Protest. 1915.
|Behold the Future|
(From The Red Wave)
By Joseph-Henry Rosny, the Elder
(French novelist, member of the Académie des Goncourts; born 1856. A glimpse of the home-life of a Syndicalist leader, an interesting contrast with the passage from the English book preceding)
|FRANÇOIS raised the little chap in his arms. Well, my young rebel, are you happy to be alive? Tomorrow I will teach you a new game: the dance of the bourgeois.|| 1|
| He seated himself in an arm-chair and gazed at the child with the grave and persuasive eyes of a leader of men. You will be a good Socialist, eh, little Antoine? You will love men; you will not separate your life from that of others, like a Robinson Crusoe of egoism. Vive la revolution!|| 2|
| Vive la revolution! cried the child.|| 3|
| Behold the future! said François Rougemont, rocking the little one upon his knees. It will see the shining of the great dawn, the dawn of a humanity as different from our own as ours is different from the humanity of the pyramids. Ah, my little man, you will know things beside which steam, electricity, and radium are as nothing. You will see man in his beauty, because he will no longer be hungryand for a hundred thousand years he has been hungry. He will no longer be hungry, he will have all his force! He will no longer be hungry, he will be able to unfold all his genius! He will no longer be hungry, he will construct beneath the sea tunnels that will go from one continent to another, and his aeroplanes will fill the firmament; he will no longer be hungry, and he will build cities out of fairy tales, with fields and forests upon the roofs, with bridges of glass over the streets, with elevators at every corner; he will no longer be hungry, he will draw enormous energies from the ocean and from the warm bosom of the earth. Ah! my little boy, in what gardens of enchantment you are going to live!|| 4|
| The little one listened hypnotized; the grandmother was quivering with happiness. A shining glory passed over their souls.|| 5|