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Rather, the current toast of the literary world is Stéphane Hessel, a 93-year-old former resistance member and diplomat, whose 13-page political essay called “Indignez-vous !” (or “Get indignant!”) has sold a whopping 600,000 copies since it hit shelves last October.
The book, which was released by Indigène -- a tiny publishing house based in the south of France -- and is on sale for an uncommonly cheap 3 euros, is a call for the French population to get angry about the injustices of modern society. Amid widespread disillusionment with the policies of centre-right French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the text could become a rallying cry for the French left as it braces itself to challenge the incumbent in the 2012 presidential election. Hessel, for his part, is a vocal supporter of Socialist Party head Martine Aubry.