Part 4, Chapter 2 Summary

Yesterday, Lantier and some others met at Rasseneur’s to choose the members of the delegation. La Maheude was distraught to learn that her husband was part of the deputation, fearful that her family would be turned out into the street. Maheu was reluctant at first, as well. Despite their crushing, unjust poverty, both have “lapsed back into their habitual state of inbred acquiescence.” At their quiet dinner table, Lantier tells Maheu they are all counting on him to be the spokesman for the group; La Maheude objects until Lantier explains why. Maheu is the best, most respected, and most popular worker in the mines and everyone sees him as having good sense; any demands the group makes will have more credibility coming from...

(The entire section is 799 words.)