The Jungle

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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The Jungle The beginning of the 20th century saw an influx of immigrants arriving in the U.S.

These people coming from mainly throughout Europe had hope to escape their ill lives back home and prosper in the richness that America had to offer. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair was considered his greatest achievement as an author. He depicted the trials and tribulations of a Lithuanian family as they try to achieve the "American Dream." Upton Sinclair's book was a reflection of a capitalistic society in which promotes greed, corruption and ruthless competition as a way of life. Sinclair also details how capitalism exploits the working class and drains them for their resources. Ironically, these workers could not escape capitalism because they lived to depend on it. Furthermore, Sinclair had hoped to spread the ideas of Socialism and in turn would rid the capitalistic system, which enslaved them.

Upton Sinclair uses the novel as propaganda for Socialism rather than to tell a story.

The Jungle has a variety of characters is which Sinclair uses to carry out his messages. However, through the eyes of one main character, Jurgis Rudkus, we see the evils of the capitalistic system and how it affects his family as well as their aspirations. When Jurgis arrives in Packingtown, a city in Chicago, he easily gets a job because of his size and his strength. Eventually, he begins to learn about the unsanitary conditions in the plants as well as how merciless the employers are to exploit their workers. This is where his education about the capitalistic system and how it functions with society begins.

According to Sinclair, a capitalistic society values money as more important than the individual. The employers eliminated any obsolete worker that is not up to their expectations to further increase...