Fonctions de la lutte des classes dans Les Misérables

Victor Hugo’s socialism is characterized, from the 1830s onwards, by a holistic vision of the people. It comes as no surprise, then, that the concept of class struggle is not one he relies on to define his vision of social progress. In Les Misérables, however, Hugo shows an acute awareness of the conflicts permeating French society, especially since 1848; he engages with the concept of class, notably in his description of the barricades, and in so doing enters into dialogue with Marx’s own interpretation of class struggles in France. This paper analyses to what extent Hugo incorporates social conflicts in his own social messianism; it also demonstrates that class struggle acts as an important fictional catalyst, contributing to the narrative construction of the elusive figure of the misérable. (In French)

Maxime Goergen
Volume 45.1-2