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Thus, modernity triumphed and we did not know it. The passionate energy expended, throughout the nineteenth century, upon extracting messianism from its Christian matrix, reinventing a civic religion delivered from dogma, an emancipatory politics beyond the old Salvation; this unprecedented effort, on the part of poets (Lamartine, Vigny, Hugo, Nerval), historians (Michelet, Quinet), philosophers (Fichte, Schelling, Hegel, Saint-Simon, Comte), novelists (Hugo again, Zola) and he who we have never known how to classify, Karl Marx, once more to vectorize the subject with a meaning…