Two notes on last issue


Fifth Estate # 281, March, 1977

Two notes on last issue: It was dated February 1977, skipping the issue which would have been dated January to allow us to bring the publication in line with when the paper actually appeared; you did not miss an issue.

The unattributed quote on the cover of the last issue was by Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) and comes from a section of The Gay Science entitled “The Eulogists of Work” and bears a striking resemblance to contemporary critiques of wage work. A section is reprinted here:

“At bottom, one now feels when confronted with work—and what is invariably meant is relentless industry from early till late—that such work is the best policy, that it keeps everybody in harness and powerfully obstructs the development of reason, of covetousness, of the desire for independence. For it uses up a tremendous amount of nervous energy and takes it away from reflection, brooding, dreaming, worry, love, and hatred; it always sets a small goal before one’s eyes and permits easy and regular satisfaction.

“In that way a society in which The members continually work hard will have more security: and security is now adored as the supreme goddess. And now —horrors!—it is precisely the “worker” who has become dangerous. “Dangerous individuals are swarming all around.” And behind them, the danger of dangers: the individual.”