The Man Who Laughs
ebook ∣ L'Homme Qui Rit
By Victor Hugo
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Moving away from the explicitly political content of his previous novels, Victor Hugo turns to social commentary in The Man Who Laughs, an 1869 work that was made into a popular film in the 1920s. The plot deals with a band of miscreants who deliberately deform children to make them more effective beggars, as well as the long-lasting emotional and social damage that this abhorrent practice inflicts upon its victims.