This chapter explores the industrial production of literature then takes on a new meaning: the lower classes are produced by the work they do in more ways than one. The early print history of Honore de Balzac's fiction shines some light on the impact of changes to the production and dissemination of literature in nineteenth-century France. The varied reproduction of Le pere Goriot after 1835 depended on the emergence of a modern publishing industry driven by the speculation of entrepreneurial publishers. The suppression of unions under Napoleon III and industrial strife in the 1870s and early 1880s, for example at Anzin in 1878, Denain in 1880, and Montceau-les-Mines in 1882, made Germinal a timely publication. In La terre, the industrialist Rochefontaine wins the local election; in contrast, Hourdequin's modern farm goes bankrupt, he is killed by a jealous lover, and the farm is set ablaze.