Letters from: Proudhon, P-J. (1875) Correspondance de P.-J. Proudhon; Tome Troisiéme Librairie Internationale; Paris.
From P.-J. Proudhon
To Mme Proudhon, his mother
Lyon, October 8, 1846
Vol. 2, pgs. 218-220
My dear mother, here you are with two grandsons, and I thank God that your posterity and my own is ensured. Since Charles' wife is ill and besides it is good composition, instead of killing yourself to make the trip Burgille every day, I think it would be appropriate that you move in with Charles and he take the position of authority. The manager of a household, such as a government, is rightfully the most capable and strongest, and what I have given you, you return the market to hand. But I know you too well, dear mother, to believe that we will never complain about you. It may therefore be necessary, as there is nobody there.
My book is finished and it is to be sold in Paris on the 5th of this month. It won't be five or six months from now that I kwill know in a definitive manner what the public thinks.
Until then, I've made up my mind and I'll try something more important. I have told you, this book is the last that I will write in my life, and now I go in another direction. I can not tell you again by mail what my views are, just that you know about this that I can no longer allow me to go to Lyons. I'd rather keep to Cordiron than live as I live.
I have trade and mercantilism all over the head, and I can not breathe until the day I say goodbye to the shop. Besides, I have nothing more to learn, and since my star has not allowed me to become a father, I want to enjoy my freedom. I currently have enough resources within myself to give me the authorization to transport myself to my other home and change professions. Besides, dear mother, the effort I put into acheiving such a position is done believing it to be the last I will take on.
If I fail in my project, I am left to myself to live with the modest salary of a good clerk, and I can go on living by 2 to 4,000 francs. But I think I have much better things to do right now, and I have not worked for ten years and experienced hardships trying to learn something, to bury him alive and without protest in my duties as clerk.
I embrace you, dear mother. Your devoted and dutiful son.