Boom and busted


"But if progress was so powerful, so universal and so desirable, how was this reluctance to welcome it or even to participate in it to be explained? Was it merely the dead weight of the past, which would gradually, unevenly but inevitably, be lifted off those parts of humanity which still groaned under it? Was not an opera house, that characteristic cathedral of bourgeois culture, soon to be erected in Manaus, a thousand miles up the River Amazon, in the midst of the primeval rainforest, out of the profits of the rubber boom - whose Indian victims, alas, had no chance to appreciate Il Trovatore?"

Eric Hobsbawm, The Age of Empire: 1875 - 1914

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

So Hobsbawm was unaware of the subjunctive case? That's discouraging.

socialism and/or barbarism said...

Well-noted, sir or ma'am.