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In Dubious Battle by John Steinbeck
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In Dubious Battle (1936)

by John Steinbeck

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,478None5,010 (3.84)1 / 113
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  1. 10
    Les "Raisins de la colere" de John Steinbeck (Foliotheque) (French Edition) by Marie-Christine Lemardeley-Cunci (Babou_wk)
    Babou_wk: L'exploitation des travailleurs agricoles aux Etats-Unis. La lutte des classes, l'organisation d'une grève. Les pratiques anti-communistes aux Etats-Unis dans la premiere moitié du XXè siècle.
  2. 00
    Germinal by Émile Zola (Babou_wk)
    Babou_wk: La lutte des classes, l'organisation d'une grève. La répression des grévistes par la troupe.
  3. 00
    The Given Day by Dennis Lehane (Babou_wk)
    Babou_wk: La lutte des classes, l'organisation d'une grève. Les pratiques anti-communistes aux États-Unis dans la première moitié du XXè siècle.
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English (28)  Swedish (1)  Finnish (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (31)
Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
DESCRIPTION FROM BACK OF BOOK
"In the California Apple country, nine hundred migratory workers rise up "in dubious battle" against the landowners. The group takes on a life of its own - stronger than its individual members and more frightening. Led by the doomed Jim Nolan, the strike is founded on his tragic idealism on the "courage never to submit or yield.
"In Dubious Battle" cannot be dismissed as a "propaganda" novel - it is another version of the eternal human fight against injustice. It is an especially good version, dramatically intense, beautifully written. It is the real thing; it has a vigor of sheer storytelling that may sweep away many prejudices."


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

MY REVIEW

This is the third Steinbeck book I've read, and while it was an excellent, moving book, I think it was missing a little something when compared to "The Grapes of Wrath" and "Of Mice and Men." It was an interesting story, and very moving, but I don't think enough time was really spent on the characters on this one, which I think was one of the greatest strengths of the other two.

Despite this, however, this was an excellent book. I really liked how it showed the strikers not as godlike heroes without fault, but as fallible men who could be just as brutal as the people they were fighting against. While the book was certainly biased towards the strikers (as fits with Steinbeck's politics in his other books), the fact that he made them fallible makes this book all the more realistic. I also really liked the way Steinbeck makes the scope of the battle the strikers were fighting for very clear. It was not something to be won in a day, or a year, or even a lifetime, but an idealistic war that even those fighting it didn't understand exactly. My mom, who works for a union, should definitely read this book. Both as an inspiration and as a cautionary tale. ( )
  Anniik | Sep 7, 2013 |
Started listening to this book on Book Radio, and since it was mostly dialogue it was a good way to start it (had to check it out of the library to finish). I love Steinbeck, love labor union history, and understand the influence of the American Communist Party in the movement. Steinbeck showed both sides of mob mentality, its usefulness, it's uncontrollable consequences. He also was able to illustrate the fact that both sides of a noble cause are users and easily forget the individual for the sake of the "vision". Fatal flaw of pure communism and pure conservativism, in my opinion. ( )
  Elpaca | May 1, 2013 |
How did I never hear about this book before? About labor organizing in CA, kinda like all the labor parts of Grapes of Wrath. Yes! ( )
  alycias | Apr 4, 2013 |
Steinbeck is in good form with this novel, covering the struggle of orchard workers against a rich farmer, giving his usual eloquent description and engrossing characters. I don't hear this one being mentioned too often of Steinbeck's works, which is a shame. ( )
  HadriantheBlind | Mar 30, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Steinbeckprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
French, WarrenIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kossin, SanfordCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stechschulte, TomNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Velde, Frédérique van derTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Innumerable force of Spirits armed,

That durst dislike his reign, and, me preferring,

His utmost power with adverse power opposed

In dubious battle on the plains of Heaven

And shook his throne. What though the field be lost?

All is not lost--the unconquerable will,

And study of revenge, immortal hate,

And courage never to submit or yield:

And what is else not to be overcome?

PARADISE LOST
Dedication
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At last it was evening.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
An exploration of the power of the mob - for good and for evil. In the California apple country, nine hundred migratory workers rise up 'in dubious battle' against the landowners. The group takes on a life of its own - stronger than its individual members and more frightening. Led by the doomed Jim Nolan, the strike is founded on his tragic idealism - on the 'courage never to submit or yield.'
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0143039636, Paperback)

This 1936 novel—set in the California apple country—portrays a strike by migrant workers that metamorphoses from principled defiance into blind fanaticism.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:37:51 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Set in the California apple country this novel portrays a strike by migrant workers that metamorphoses from principled defiance into blind fanaticism.

» see all 3 descriptions

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