The Jungle by Upton Sinclair, 1906 first trade edition.


Written by Upton Sinclair. First trade edition, February 1906, second state. (Battered copyright.) Doubleday, Page & Company. New York.

Chapter XIV

"Such were the new surroundings in which Elzbieta was placed, and such was the work she was compelled to do. It was stupefying, brutalizing work; it left her no time to think, no strength for anything. She was part of the machine she tended, and every faculty that was not needed for the machine was doomed to be crushed out of existence. There was only one mercy about the cruel grind - that it gave her the gift of insensibility. Little by little she sank into a torpor - she fell silent. ..."

The Jungle provides a harrowing look at the lives of immigrant workers in the meatpacking industry of Chicago in the early 20th century. Published at the turn of the 20th century, the book depicts the extreme hardships faced by these workers and a scathing critique of the American Dream. Sinclair, who was a noted muckraker, originally wrote the novel to raise awareness about the plight of the workers and advocate for socialism. However, the shocking revelations about the unsanitary conditions in the meatpacking plants caught the public's attention and led to significant reforms in food safety standards, including the passage of the Meat Inspection Act. The story follows the protagonist, Jurgis Rudkus, and his family as they navigate the brutal realities of their new life in America, only to find themselves trapped in a cycle of poverty and exploitation.

Upton Sinclair (1878 - 1968) was an American author and a key figure in the muckraking movement, which sought to expose social and political issues. A political activist, Sinclair was also the Democratic Party nominee for governor of California in 1934. Throughout his career, he wrote nearly 100 books across various genres, earning the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1943. His works often reflected his socialist views, advocating for social reform and workers' rights. Books include King Midas, Manassas, The Money Changers, and Between Two Worlds.

The book belonged to John W. Walker (1876c - 1948), an attorney who served as official reporter for the Territorial court in Tombstone AZ from 1903 - 1917, then moved to Tucson to clerk under U. S. District Court Judge William H. Sawtelle until 1947.
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Condition: Very Good. Lacks dust jacket, as issued. Green cloth cover boards with black and white decoration: Loose at front hinge; rubbing of white type and decoration on the front and spine; scattered small white spots, front, back, and spine; small brown stain on the back, lower edge; moderate wear along all edges; bumped at corners. Bookplate on front paste-down, and previous owner's name on front fly leaf. Pages 19 and 33 are loose, small stains on pages 111 and 162 - 163, else pages are clean, undamaged, and complete.

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