Synopses & Reviews
The thirteenth novel in Émile Zola’s great Rougon-Macquart sequence, Germinal expresses outrage at the exploitation of the many by the few, but also shows humanity’s capacity for compassion and hope.
Etienne Lantier, an unemployed railway worker, is a clever but 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, and in debt, unable to feed and clothe their families. When conditions in the mining 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 glossary
] made me realize that when books are considered ‘classics, most of the time theyre actually very readable and exciting.” —Daniel Radcliffe
Written to draw attention to the misery prevailing among the poor in France during the Second Empire, this novel depicts the grim struggle between capital and labour in a coalfield in northern France. Yet, through the blackness of this picture, humanity is constantly apparent.
About the Author
Émile Zola (1840-1902) was the leading figure in the French school of naturalistic fiction. His principal work, Les Rougon-Macquart, is a panorama of mid-19th century French life, in a cycle of 20 novels which Zola wrote over a period of 22 years.