Monday, July 10, 2006

Birth of a fast food nation

Upton Sinclair's The Jungle was published one hundred years ago, an anniversary celebrated by a new Penguin edition.

In Slate Karen Olsson offers up an interesting essay on The Jungle that may make you almost want to (re-)read the book but more probably will leave you content with feeling slightly better informed about a book you may have read in high school. Click here to read Olsson's essay.

From the publisher:
Upton Sinclair's dramatic and deeply moving story exposed the brutal conditions in the Chicago stockyards at the turn of the nineteenth century and brought into sharp moral focus the apalling odds against which immigrants and other working people struggled for their share of the American dream. Denounced by the conservative press as an un-American libel on the meatpacking industry, the book was championed by more progressive thinkers, including then president Theodore Roosevelt, and was a major catalyst to the passing of the Pure Food and Meat Inspection act, which has tremendous impact to this day.
The Jungle is available online for free here.

--Marshal Zeringue