Justifications of power

Kuprin in “The Outrage” asks us to look at society from a radically different perspective, by viewing thieves as acting ethically, in response to social injustice.

Kuprin quotes Proudhon: La propriete c’est le vol (Property is Theft), and says this has “never yet been refuted by the sermons of cowardly bourgeois or fat priests.”  He uses as examples the origins of wealth and the effects of inheritance. Chekhov, in “A Woman’s Kingdom,” also explores these two issues.

In roughly 750 words (stapled or paper-clipped) address the following:

Explain how, taken together, these two stories allow us to see differently the justifications for the distribution of wealth in the United States. In what sense do they form a criticism of the idea that the wealthy deserve their wealth, and the poor their poverty?

Due Weds. Feb. 8th in class.



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