A Seventh Man by John Berger

By John Berger

Why does the Western international glance to migrant employees to accomplish the main menial projects? What compels humans to go away their houses and settle for this humiliating scenario? In A 7th Man, John Berger and Jean Mohr come to grips with what it really is to be a migrant worker—the fabric conditions and the interior experience—and, in doing so, exhibit how the migrant isn't quite a bit at the margins of recent existence, yet totally important to it. First released in 1975, this finely wrought exploration is still as pressing as ever, providing a style of residing that pervades the nations of the West and but is excluded from a lot of its tradition.

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And about four million in the countryside who could only find work at harvest time. Each year three hundred thousand more workers came on to the labour market. Nearly 70 per cent of the population could neither read nor write. By 1967 there were about a quarter of a million Turkiah migrantl working abroad. Today (1974) there are more than three times that number. The bus is in the suburbs of the capital of his country. ings constructed from spare bricks, scrapwood and discarded corrugated iron.

28 According to the capitalist ethic, poverty is a state from which an individual or a society is delivered by enterprise. Enterprise is judged by the criterion of Productivity as a value in itself. Hence underdevelopment as a condition of locked, inescapable poverty is inconceivable to capitalism. Yet capitalism holds nearly half the world in that condition. This contradiction between theory and practice is one of the reasons why capitalism and its cultural institutions can no longer explain either itself or the world.

It is neither ploughed back into their own enterprises, nor does it serve to develop others. To the extent that it is not taken abroad by foreign stockholders, it is used in a manner very much resembling that of the landed aristocracy. It supports luxurious living by its recipients, is spent on construction of urban and rural residences, on servants, excess consumption and the like. The remainder is invested in the acquisition of rent-bearing land, in financing mercantile activities of all kinds, in usury and speculation.

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