Monday, May 23, 2005

Wage Slaves

I wonder how much modern employees are like ancient slaves and the servants of generations past. Some wage earners still wear the livery of their masters, while many of us have less real daily, hour by hour, freedom in our lives than those of old. We are not beaten. We can leave. Our children are free to choose their masters and prepare themselves to serve in a capacity they prefer.

The swineherd Eumaeus was a slave of Odysseus but lived with what seemed rustic freedom of an admirable sort. He seemed to live the majority of his life with a good amount of autonomy. His freedom had limits but no so much that he couldn’t help out a wandering man in need with shelter, coat and food. Eumaeus was an employee paid with security and all the things he was able to provide the masked Odysseus.

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