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| | | |-+  So I'm going to read The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair
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Author Topic: So I'm going to read The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair  (Read 1835 times)
Vosem
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« on: June 29, 2012, 02:31:59 pm »
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It's required reading at my high school. Has anybody read it? Thoughts?

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I apologize for being so adamantly right.
The Mikado
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« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2012, 04:24:36 pm »
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It's a pain in the ass, and it has a weak ending (a very weak ending that feels like it was imported from another book entirely), but it's a powerful book.  The famous bits are the meat packing plant bits, but that's only the first third of the book.

Also, for all his positives, Upton Sinclair did not like black people, so don't be surprised to find some fairly racist passages in this book.
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Einzige is a poltroon who cowardly turns down duel challenges he should be honor-bound to accept. The Code Duello authorizes you to mock and belittle such a pathetic honorless scoundrel.
Mynheer Peeperkorn
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« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2012, 04:27:50 pm »
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Read Heart of Darkness or Lord of the Flies. Sinclair is irrelevant.
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homelycooking
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« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2012, 04:51:05 pm »
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It turned me into a rabid Marxist at age 13. I should read it again as the bourgeois, liberal slime that I now am and see what I think of it this time.
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Mynheer Peeperkorn
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« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2012, 05:08:18 pm »
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North American literature is Faulkner + A Confederacy of Dunces + the first half of Catch 22.

Everything else is "fine" and that's all. I've always felt sympathy for Fitzgerald, but his novels are quite irrelevant. Twain is G rated.

Hemingway is trash.

In poetry Whitman and Ginsberg are great.

And that's the end of North American literature.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2012, 09:46:23 am by Mynheer Peeperkorn von Thurn und Taxis-Hohenlohe »Logged
ℒief
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« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2012, 05:48:37 pm »
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The first third is excellent, the second third is good, the final third is pretty bad.
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homelycooking
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« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2012, 10:02:53 pm »
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And that's the end of North American literature.

You are so narrow-minded, you can see through a needle with both eyes.
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memphis
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« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2012, 10:49:46 pm »
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It's interesting to see how the public completely missed the point of the novel. Or at least didn't care.
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Mynheer Peeperkorn
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« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2012, 03:41:26 am »
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And that's the end of North American literature.

You are so narrow-minded, you can see through a needle with both eyes.

Narrow minded ? LOL.
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homelycooking
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« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2012, 08:01:29 am »
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And that's the end of North American literature.

You are so narrow-minded, you can see through a needle with both eyes.

Narrow minded ? LOL.

You dismiss the whole of North American literature (which includes Canada, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean as well as the United States, mind you) with the exception of Faulkner, Whitman, Ginsberg and two other novels (actually, one whole novel and a portion of another) and expect me or anyone else to take you seriously? No chance.

I repeat the accusation, sir. You are narrow minded if this is really your perspective on North American literature.
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Lewis Trondheim
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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2012, 01:55:08 pm »
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It's interesting to see how the public completely missed the point of the novel. Or at least didn't care.
"I aimed for America's heart and hit it in the stomach" or something.

The ending... what was that again? You mean the part with our Lithuanian immigrant (I forget his name Sad ) as a Socialist agitator? Or was there something after that I've forgotten?
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The Mikado
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« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2012, 02:55:43 pm »
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It's interesting to see how the public completely missed the point of the novel. Or at least didn't care.
"I aimed for America's heart and hit it in the stomach" or something.

The ending... what was that again? You mean the part with our Lithuanian immigrant (I forget his name Sad ) as a Socialist agitator? Or was there something after that I've forgotten?

Coming a close second running for Mayor of Chicago, suddenly capable of discoursing on the finer parts of Socialist philosophy (there's a big argument in the end over whether or not Socialism is compatible with Christianity, and our uneducated and mostly-unlettered hero suddenly starts learnedly discussing the issue), etc.
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Einzige is a poltroon who cowardly turns down duel challenges he should be honor-bound to accept. The Code Duello authorizes you to mock and belittle such a pathetic honorless scoundrel.
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Nathan
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« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2012, 06:08:17 pm »
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North American literature is Faulkner + A Confederacy of Dunces + the first half of Catch 22.

Everything else is "fine" and that's all. I've always felt sympathy for Fitzgerald, but his novels are quite irrelevant. Twain is G rated.

Hemingway is trash.

In poetry Whitman and Ginsberg are great.

And that's the end of North American literature.

Any definition of North American literature that includes Ginsberg and not Stevens or Williams, or somehow privileges Faulkner over O'Connor, or pretends that North America north of the forty-ninth or south of the Rio Grande doesn't exist, is no definition of 'North American literature' at all.
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A shameless agrarian collectivist with no respect for private property or individual rights.

His idea of freedom is - it is a bad thing and should be stopped at all costs.

Nathan-land.  As much fun as watching paint dry... literally.
Mynheer Peeperkorn
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« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2012, 04:11:56 am »
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With North America (in this forum) I refer to USA. It's wrong but it's better than USA = America.
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opebo
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« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2012, 10:29:48 am »
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North American literature is Faulkner + A Confederacy of Dunces + the first half of Catch 22.

Everything else is "fine" and that's all. I've always felt sympathy for Fitzgerald, but his novels are quite irrelevant. Twain is G rated.

Hemingway is trash.

In poetry Whitman and Ginsberg are great.

And that's the end of North American literature.

Well done!  I like this kind of sweeping arrogant dismissal, and I even partially agree with it.  For sure about Faulkner - head and shoulders above the rest - and Hemmingway (bleagh), and even Fitzgerald and Twain (good but perhaps not so 'important').

But you're still disregarding very interesting writers like Henry James, Flannery O'Connor, etc.  Of course I suppose I may be confusing personal liking for something greater.
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Gustaf
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« Reply #15 on: July 14, 2012, 05:04:10 am »
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Yeah, I agree with Opebo in the sense that an arrogant and sweeping statement is typically a great starting point for a debate (especially if it's ludicrous). I do it all the time. Tongue

I'd say that I disagree though. Much of the modern good literature is American, in my opinion. Joseph Heller, Kurt Vonnegut, Thomas Pynchon and so on.

Older American literature I don't know as well, since it is so ignored in literature classes here.
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This place really has become a cesspool of degenerate whores...

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« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2012, 01:59:28 am »
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Vosem, if the subject matter of The Jungle interests you, I recommend its contemporary friend: Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser.

As to great American writers, one of our best living authors has to be Cormac McCarthy.
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