Friday, January 25, 2013

The Jungle

The Jungle by – Upton Sinclair

“I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach.”
~
Upton Sinclair

In Chicago, a Lithuanian wedding is taking place for Ona and Jurgis. It is a family filled with immigrants who came to America with the hope of freedom, a job, and a decent place to live for their families.

Most of the family members work for the packing house. Packing Town prior to housing workers and their families was a city dump. For the children of Packing Town there is no school, they play in filth with swarms of flies around their faces and bodies, and the stench of dead animals.

Jurgis and the family move from the packing yards to their own home, only finding themselves with a mortgage and hefty interest payments.

Winter sets in and causes the family more expenses as they find their home has not been insulted. The family has no winter clothes or blankets. Also, the factories are not heated.

Jurgis and each family member after much debate join the union. He also starts school to learn reading and writing in English.

Ona and Jurgis have their first child, a son, as the hardships continue – hardships that most people cannot imagine.

The novel tells of inhuman conditions in many different places of employment throughout Chicago. These conditions are also taking place across America at this time in history.

The grind and hopelessness of the work with the physical elements transformed a person – many became depressed and turn to drink as a source of comfort among other things.

Jurgis finds comfort in joining the socialist party and attending meetings – he seems to soak up knowledge which enables him to carry on.

This novel has historical value and can ring true to some working conditions in other countries across the globe.

I highly recommend reading this work and perhaps comparing the politics of the book with what is going on in our country today.

Social Justice Theme

♥♥♥ For: Social Justice Theme at, Resistance Is Futile

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for your great review of The Jungle. I'm really looking forward to reading it! :) I'm not sure I'll have time to finish it in February, but I'll get to it very, very soon.

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