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A monologue from the play by John Galsworthy
NOTE: This monologue is reprinted from Strife. John Galsworthy. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1918.
Ye best know whether the condition of the Company is any better than the condition of the men. Ye best know whether ye can afford your tyranny–but this I tell ye:
If ye think the men will give way the least part of an inch, ye’re making the worst mistake ye ever made. Ye think because the Union is not supporting us–more shame to it!–that we’ll be coming on our knees to you one fine morning.
Ye think because the men have got their wives an’ families to think of–that it’s just a question of a week or two. I will say this for you, Mr. Anthony–ye know your own mind! And I know mine.
I tell ye this. The men will send their wives and families where the country will have to keep them; an’ they will starve sooner than give way. I advise ye, Mr. Anthony, to prepare yourself for the worst that can happen to your Company.
We are not so ignorant as you might suppose. We know the way the cat is jumping. From the time that I remember anything ye have been an enemy to every man that has come into your works.
I don’t say that ye’re a mean man, or a cruel man, but ye’ve grudged them the say of any word in their own fate. Ye’ve fought them down four times. I’ve heard ye say ye love a fight–mark my words–ye’re fighting the last fight ye’ll ever fight!