"'And then I'll
take you to the theatre. I'll take you to Frederick Lemaître's.
I get tickets, I know the actors, I even acted once in a play. ...
After that, we'll go to the Opera. We'll go in with the claque.
The claque at the Opera is very select. I wouldn't go with the claque
on some boulevards. At the opera, just think, some pay twenty sous,
but they're fools.'"
in Victor Hugo's
Les Misérables, Saint Denis, Book 6, Chapter 2 (pg
What does this passage
say about Hugo's perspective on the theatre and the Opera? He obviously
doesn't think much of it. Gavroche pokes fun of the bourgeoisie
who spend money to go to the same show he sees for free.
Yet, there is a sort
of acknowledgement of the popularity and success of the theatre
and Opera. Gavroche proposes the outing to his two younger brothers
because going to the theatre or the Opera is a fashionable thing
to do, aside form being fun. Gavroche has a sense of importance
because he both knows actors and has 'performed' on stage: would
he feel important if what he was participating in was not as fashionable
as it is?