March 12, 2014

Act with Agency, Ctd Émile Zola


"La verite est en marche et rien ne l’arretera. Qui souffre pour la verite et la justice devient auguste et sacre... Il n’est de justice que dans la verite. Il n’est de bonheur que dans la justice.”

These are the words of Émile Zola. A Frenchman known above all else for his fearless defense of Alfred Dreyus, a Jewish officer wrongly accused of being a German spy. This was known as the Dreyfus Affair. A time of virulent anti-semitism in France. A monumental episode in world history. His sharp, committed and determined epistolary campaign effected huge change - Ultimately his letter, 'J’Accuse', led to the release of Alfred Dreyfus from jail with a full exoneration.

Christopher Hitchens wrote in his book, 'Letters to a Young Contrarian' (p.4):
"The figure of Émile Zola offers encouragement, and his singular campaign for justice is one of the imperishable examples of what may be accomplished be an individual."  

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