You are a Serf!

Well, perhaps I should say most of my readers are probably serfs.  Of course I’m using the term loosely because we aren’t bound to any feudal system in which we are slaves bound to the land…in fact we have been removed from the land.  We are now free to sell our bodies and our minds for the highest wages.  Please note that the highest wages are those that the land owners or the capitalists rogues choose to pay.

Where am I getting this stuff you wonder?  Well, my daughter came home with a project on the medieval period.  She was talking about serfs.  And she made me hit the books and look at the condition of those men and women who were literally bound to the manors or royals, or barons.  In that period men and women who weren’t rich enough to own property, unless they were skilled at a particular trade, were sort of what we think of as slaves.  They owed their allegiance to the land owner who provided them with a living.

If the land owner got into trouble with his friends then his slaves might have to go fight for him! This kind of relationship wasn’t just developed in the middle ages, it had links back  throughout early modern history.  As a matter of fact, the serfs could be seen as colons, or coloni which goes back to the Roman empire.  When I came across that word I was unfamiliar with it…until I  realized that it was the root of the word “Colonial” or ” colony”.

Did you get that?  Remember here in America we established ourselves thanks to the folks who lived in the original colonies?

The people who were bound to the land with the intention that they’d pay their King enough in taxes to support him?

Sure, things have changed dramatically.  We aren’t serfs anymore! Serfs had an acre or up to 5 acres of land that they were allowed to farm.  We’ve pretty much given that up. We’ve moved into cities and towns so that we are close to work.  And if our homes need fixing, or our children need fixing it only comes after we’ve done our required share of work for our paymasters.

I’m okay with this being the way things are done…I just want us to acknowledge that we haven’t moved too far from the feudal system of the middle ages!

I also would like some of you to go read Marx…remember he’s that Communist?! His ideas were radical!  He was dangerous!  And you all know what we do with radical dangerous ideas!  We crush them!

But honestly, when the same sort of things keep needing to be crushed…maybe it’s time to think about them.  Like maybe there is something we are doing inadvertently of course, that keeps causing these disruptive notions to take root.

I know I’m going to keep thinking about it!


a coloni/serf named mo




2 thoughts on “You are a Serf!”

  1. Mo:
    But even under Marx’s ideal society theory, he still realized there would be the Lumpenproletariats who lacked class consiousness, and did nothing to contribute to better society for the collective utopia!

    1. Hi Teri!

      Maybe we can say that Marx was a man of his time. It’s really tough to talk about an entire society, especially our own society but personally I think it’s enlightening to sort of know ” from whence we came”. Maybe we can’t fight what is wrong…maybe we can only mitigate it by strengthening and building on what feels right? Society is going to be with us forever! Maybe our system of rewarding the folks who are assets needs to be reconsidered.

      I really appreciate your thoughts! I read what you wrote and I felt like a fencer…touche’! 🙂

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