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The Belly of Paris

Although he managed to escape Paris – and starvation – during the Prussian siege in the fall of 1870, the French novelist Émile Zola returned to the city in March 1871, in time to witness the bloody rise and fall of the Paris commune. The following year he moved to Les Halles where he wrote Le […]

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Consuming the Paris Commune

A few days ago, strolling goggle-eyed through the glitz and glam of Bon Marché, Paris’s ultra-upscale department store, I passed a menswear display named for the Paris Commune of 1871. The historical irony smacked me in the face so hard, I nearly got whiplash. To discover that the first worker-controlled state in world history was […]

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