Summary Of Upton Sinclair's The Jungle

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"Aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." These are words Upton Sinclair used to describe how he felt about the effectiveness of his novel The Jungle. While it is true that Sinclair was trying to use his work to persuade the public to change their political ideology, his novel still had a major effect on society. It may not have been in the way Sinclair intended, but The Jungle still holds a piece of the public’s heart today, holding testament to the menacing ways of the government and business tycoons. The Jungle was written in the early 1900’s. A time where industries of oil, steel, railroads, and many other businesses reined supreme over the public, holding their jobs and lives in contempt. These big business …show more content…
A man named Jurgis and his family moved to Chicago to make a better life for themselves. In turn, they ended up being completely devastated by America and its corruption. The title of The Jungle is a symbol of the competitive nature of the economy and social Darwinism. These big businesses used Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution to justify the injustice and havoc they caused to their lowest employees, forcing them to work 10 hour shifts a day in a disease infected plant where there was rarely a toilet, making workers excrete their bowels next to where they worked processing meat. In the story, the condition of workers were so bad that the father of Jurgis, Antanas, died from tuberculosis because of chemicals he inhaled while sweeping brine into a trap door to be processed again. His wife, Ona, was sold out by a prostitute by her boss who also raped her constantly, simply because he knew he could get away with it. This family was treated worse than trash in the gutter, not only being neglected their basic rights, but also being exploited for the gain of their superiors. Just as the cows and pigs were herded into pens and killed with impunity all while enduring suffering, having no decision about their fates, so too did the this family by the hierarchy of America’s

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