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The Jungle (Norton Critical Editions) by…
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The Jungle (Norton Critical Editions)

by Upton Sinclair

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Sinclair is famously noted for claimin that in this book he "aimed for the heart, and hit the stomach," because of the outrage produced over his (true) depiction of the handling of animal carcasses and by-products, but little reaction over the working conditions of the plants. To today's audience, the melodrama is a bit over the top; the protagonist loses both his young wife and son to the conditions that existed in the neighborhood and the workplace. Or, at least, we like to think that it is melodrama. The book remains a classic because it portrays a slice of life that was just beginning to be examined by "muckrakers" when the book was first published in 1905. ( )
  GregMiller | Dec 20, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 039397779X, Paperback)

The Jungle's influence has been extraordinary for a literary work. Upton Sinclair's 1906 landmark novel is widely credited with awakening the public fury that led to the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act (1906), a watershed in consumer protection and government legislation.

This story of the immigrant experience in the harrowing Chicago stockyards has drawn comment from historians, policymakers, and literary critics, and it is a widely assigned teaching text. The novel is accompanied by an introduction and explanatory annotations.

"Contexts and Backgrounds" provides readers with an understanding of The Jungle's disparate social, historical, political, and literary dimensions. Included are autobiographical selections by the author; contemporary perspectives on the meatpacking industry, including writings by Theodore Dreiser, Adolphe Smith, and J. Ogden Armour; and commentary on the living conditions of immigrant workers. Historical studies by Jimmy Skaggs, Rick Halpern, James Barrett, Robert M. Crunden, John Braeman, William Cronon, and Eric Schlosser address the central issues: slaughterhouse abuses, protectionism and The Beef Trust, muckraking, Progressivism, and consumer rights.

"Criticism" collects eight provocative readings of The Jungle as a literary text, as a historical document in its own right, as a contribution to Progressive-era muckraking, and as an important work in urban, economic, and labor history. Contributions include Jack London, Edward Clark Marsh, Winston Spencer Churchill, Walter Rideout, June Howard, Scott Derrick, Michael Brewster Folsom, and Christopher P. Wilson.

A Selected Bibliography is also included.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:03 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

"The Jungle's influence has been extraordinary for a literary work. Upton Sinclair's 1906 landmark novel is widely credited with awakening the public fury that led to the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act (1906), a watershed in consumer protection and government legislation. This story of the immigrant experience in the harrowing Chicago stockyards has drawn comment from historians, policymakers, and literary critics, and it is a widely assigned teaching text. The novel is accompanied by an introduction and explanatory annotations."--Jacket.… (more)

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