Fordham University

 

Home | Ancient History Sourcebook | Medieval SourcebookModern History Sourcebook | Byzantine Studies Page
Other History Sourcebooks: African | East Asian | Global | Indian | IslamicJewishLesbian and Gay | Science | Women's


Modern History


Full Texts Multimedia Additions Search Help


Selected Sources Sections Studying History Reformation Early Modern World Everyday Life Absolutism Constitutionalism Colonial North America Colonial Latin America Scientific Revolution Enlightenment Enlightened Despots American Independence French Revolution Industrial Revolution Romanticism Conservative Order Nationalism Liberalism 1848 19C Britain 19C France 19C Germany 19C Italy 19C West Europe 19C East Europe Early US US Civil War US Immigration 19C US Culture Canada Australia & New Zealand 19C Latin America Socialism Imperialism Industrial Revolution II Darwin, Freud 19C Religion World War I Russian Revolution Age of Anxiety Depression Fascism Nazism Holocaust World War II Bipolar World US Power US Society Western Europe Since 1945 Eastern Europe Since 1945 Decolonization Asia Since 1900 Africa Since 1945 Middle East Since 1945 20C Latin America Modern Social Movements Post War Western Thought Religion Since 1945 Modern Science Pop Culture 21st Century
IHSP Credits
Modern History Sourcebook:
The Internationale

The Internationale is the international song of both Marxist and non-Marxist socialist parties. It was written in French by Eugene Pottier, a woodworker from Lille, after the fall of the Paris Commune of 1871, and set to music by P. Degeyter. The "Internationale" referred to is the International Working Men's Association, the so-called First International (1864­76), part of which had supported the Commune. It hac been used across the world as a song of resistence to oppression. Perhaps its most dramatic use in recent years was its repeated singing by the students in Tiananmen Square in 1989 - although, curiously, the western press did not comment on this.

Click here for a Midi file of The Internationale [Music only]

Click here for a Real Audio file of The Internationale [Music only]

Click here for a Real Audio file of The Internationale [sung in Chinese]

[Note: Although real audio files are capable of being "streamed" over the net, that is not possible  from the server I am using on this page (that may change). But even as downloadables, they are much smaller than AU and WAV files. You will need a Real Audio player installed to play them. It is from from the Real Audio Website. ]

Click here for a Real Audio file of The Internationale [sung in Turkish]

[This one will stream, but is set to a disco beat!]


The Internationale: English Version

Arise ye starvelings [or workers] from your slumbers
Arise ye criminals of want
For reason in revolt now thunders
and at last ends the age of cant.
Now away with all your superstitions
Servile masses arise, arise!
We'll change forthwith [or henceforth] the old conditions
And spurn the dust to win the prize.

CHORUS

Then come comrades rally
And the last fight let us face
The Internationale
Unites the human race. (repeat).

We peasants, artisans and others,
Enrolled amongst the sons of toil
Let's claim the earth henceforth for brothers
Drive the indolent from the soil.
On our flesh for too long has fed the raven
We've too long been the vultures prey.
But now farewell to spirit craven
The dawn brings in a brighter day.

CHORUS

No saviour from on high delivers
No trust we have in prince or peer
Our own right hand the chains must shiver
Chains of hatred, greed and fear.
Ere the thieves will out with their booty
And to all give a happier lot.
Each at his forge must do his duty
And strike the iron while its hot.

CHORUS

L'Internationale [French Original]

Debout les damnés de la terre
Debout les forçats de la faim
La raison tonne en son cratère
C'est l'éruption de la fin
Du passe faisons table rase
Foules, esclaves, debout, debout
Le monde va changer de base
Nous ne sommes rien, soyons tout

C'est la lutte finale
Groupons-nous, et demain (bis)
L'Internationale
Sera le genre humain

Il n'est pas de sauveurs suprêmes
Ni Dieu, ni César, ni tribun
Producteurs, sauvons-nous nous-mêmes
Décrétons le salut commun
Pour que le voleur rende gorge
Pour tirer l'esprit du cachot
Soufflons nous-mêmes notre forge
Battons le fer quand il est chaud

L'état comprime et la loi triche
L'impôt saigne le malheureux
Nul devoir ne s'impose au riche
Le droit du pauvre est un mot creux
C'est assez, languir en tutelle
L'égalité veut d'autres lois
Pas de droits sans devoirs dit-elle
Egaux, pas de devoirs sans droits

Hideux dans leur apothéose
Les rois de la mine et du rail
Ont-ils jamais fait autre chose
Que dévaliser le travail
Dans les coffres-forts de la bande
Ce qu'il a crée s'est fondu
En décrétant qu'on le lui rende
Le peuple ne veut que son dû.

Les rois nous saoulaient de fumées
Paix entre nous, guerre aux tyrans
Appliquons la grève aux armées
Crosse en l'air, et rompons les rangs
S'ils s'obstinent, ces cannibales
A faire de nous des héros
Ils sauront bientôt que nos balles
Sont pour nos propres généraux

Ouvriers, paysans, nous sommes
Le grand parti des travailleurs
La terre n'appartient qu'aux hommes
L'oisif ira loger ailleurs
Combien, de nos chairs se repaissent
Mais si les corbeaux, les vautours
Un de ces matins disparaissent
Le soleil brillera toujours.


Die Internationale [German Version]

Wacht auf, Verdammte dieser Erde,
die stets man noch zum Hungern zwingt!
Das Recht wie Glut im Kraterherde
nun mit Macht zum Durchbruch dringt.
Reinen Tisch macht mit dem Bedranger!
Heer der Sklaven, wache auf!
Ein nichts zu sein, tragt es nicht langer
Alles zu werden, stromt zuhauf!

Volker, hort die Signale!
Auf, zum letzten Gefecht!
Die Internationale
Erkampft das Menschenrecht

Es rettet uns kein hoh'res Wesen
kein Gott, kein Kaiser, noch Tribun
Uns aus dem Elend zu erlosen
konnen wir nur selber tun!
Leeres Wort: des armen Rechte,
Leeres Wort: des Reichen Pflicht!
Unmundigt nennt man uns Knechte,
duldet die Schmach langer nicht!

In Stadt und Land, ihr Arbeitsleute,
wir sind die starkste Partei'n
Die Mussigganger schiebt beiseite!
Diese Welt muss unser sein;
Unser Blut sei nicht mehr der Raben
und der machtigen Geier Frass!
Erst wenn wir sie vertrieben haben
dann scheint die Sonn' ohn' Unterlass!

La Internacional [Spanish/Castilian]

Arriba, parias de la Tierra.
En pie, famélica legión.
Atruena la razón en marcha,
es el fin de la opresión.

Del pasado hay que hacer añicos,
legión esclava en pie a vencer,
el mundo va a cambiar de base,
los nada de hoy todo han de ser.

Agrupémonos todos,
en la lucha final.
El género humano
es la internacional.
(bis)

Ni en dioses, reyes ni tribunos,
está el supremo salvador.
Nosotros mismos realicemos
el esfuerzo redentor.

Para hacer que el tirano caiga
y el mundo siervo liberar,
soplemos la potente fragua
que el hombre libre ha de forjar.

Agrupémonos todos,
en la lucha final.
El género humano
es la internacional.
(bis)

La ley nos burla y el Estado
oprime y sangra al productor.
Nos da derechos irrisorios,
no hay deberes del señor.

Basta ya de tutela odiosa,
que la igualdad ley ha de ser,
no más deberes sin derechos,
ningún derecho sin deber.

Agrupémonos todos,
en la lucha final.
El género humano
es la internacional.
(bis)


Billy Bragg: Modern Version of The Internationale

Stand up, all victims of oppression
For the tyrants fear your might
Don't cling so hard to your possessions
For you have nothing, if you have no rights
Let racist ignorance be ended
For respect makes the empires fall
Freedom is merely privilege extended
Unless enjoyed by one and all.

CHORUS:
So come brothers and sisters
For the struggle carries on
The Internationale
Unites the world in song
So comrades come rally
For this is the time and place
The international ideal
Unites the human race

Let no one build walls to divide us
Walls of hatred nor walls of stone
Come greet the dawn and stand beside us
We'll live together or we'll die alone
In our world poisoned by exploitation
Those who have taken, now they must give
And end the vanity of nations
We've one but one Earth on which to live

And so begins the final drama
In the streets and in the fields
We stand unbowed before their armour
We defy their guns and shields
When we fight, provoked by their aggression
Let us be inspired by life and love
For though they offer us concessions
Change will not come from above.

(c) Billy Bragg, circa 1990


This text is part of the Internet Modern History Sourcebook. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts for introductory level classes in modern European and World history.

Unless otherwise indicated the specific electronic form of the document is copyright. Permission is granted for electronic copying, distribution in print form for educational purposes and personal use. If you do reduplicate the document, indicate the source. No permission is granted for commercial use of the Sourcebook.

(c)Paul Halsall Aug 1997
halsall@murray.fordham.edu