Part 1, Chapter 6 Summary

Cramped in a tub, Lantier decides to continue looking for work, leaving the mine far behind him. It would be better to die of hunger quickly than to die a slow, painful death underground. He thinks of Catherine but knows that he must not. Lantier has more education than the others and does not share their sheep-like resignation; it is likely that he would end up “strangling the life out of one boss or another.”

Lantier is suddenly blinded, stunned by the quick ascent to the daylight. The cage empties quickly as workers streaming out of their tubs. Chaval goes immediately to see how much coal they had been credited with today. Furious, he returns and says two tubs were returned: one was not the regulation weight and...

(The entire section is 807 words.)