The World fair was the engineering project of its time. It brought plenty of excitement and attention to itself, but it also brought crime. The problem is, even though everything seems fine with the fair, there were bad things still happening. Stealing, cheating, and in extreme cases even murder. Chicago was in charge of building the World’s fair, but ended up hosting a murderer in its walls. The Devil in the White City gives a unique glimpse into how there is both bad and good existing in the city. In my opinion the point of the book was to show how both good and bad coexist in one place. Sometimes with the knowledge of the other existing. The book was written by Erik Larson and published by first vintage books. Published almost 14 years ago the book is still relevant today and still has much to teach us. However, the most important thing it teaches is how good and bad exist together simultaneously.
In this book we see how the city of Chicago goes from being a place where most tourists find unattractive and doesn’t amount
The Devil In The White City had many plot lines that took place in Chicago around 1893 at the World's Fair. The first plot line focuses mainly on Daniel Burnham constructing the World's Fair with his partner John Root. It tells a story of struggle for the men, how they had such a hard time constructing the large Farris wheel, to having to open unfinished, then having trouble getting attendance up. Then the struggle is over for the two guys for a short amount of time. Not long after they gather up just enough money to pay off their debts, the Fair had to shut down, as the mayor of Chicago had been assassinated, honestly a more positive reputation for Chicago.
hosting the world’s fair would lift their reputation of being the “black city.” Daniel Burnham, the
Dr. H. H. Holmes was a serial killer during the time of the World’s Columbian Exposition. Between the time he arrived in Chicago and the time of his death, it is said to be that he killed several hundred people. Holmes was born and raised in New Hampshire but eventually found his way to Chicago. He was a different man and found joy in killing humans. Most of his murders occurred in his Castle in Englewood near Chicago. The question is, why did Holmes pick Chicago of all places? Why not somewhere else? Chicago was a place for H.H. Holmes to commit his crimes because the city had a growing population, it was going to host the World’s Columbian Exposition, and because Chicago was a selfish city.
The early 1900s came with an abundance of changes. There were multiple waves of immigration causing increased social separation. There was also increased industrialization. The increase in industrialization provided many jobs for the incoming immigrants. However, these immigrants took on a lot more than just a new job when they came to America. Immigrants faced harsh living and working conditions, racial strife, poverty, as well as social class issues. Upton Sinclair’s novel The Jungle explores many of these hardships immigrants had to face through the lives of Lithuanian Immigrants. Throughout his novel, Sinclair focuses on poverty and thoughts of what America was supposed to be like to portray hardships immigrants faced when coming to America.
The non fiction novel, “The Devil in the White City”, is filled with twists and turns as author Eric Larson compares the lives of two men thought to be living two entirely different lives. Chicago’s World Fair, in remembrance of the landing of Columbus in America, is a major aspect in the lives of both men, named H.H Holmes and Daniel Burnham. In this specific passage, however, the literary element of symbolism is applied and very well so. The illuminations lighting up the city symbolizes positivity. With European rivals always “one step ahead”, the lights covering Chicago specifically give a sense of hope and America’s potential to be improved. The beams radiating light exemplify America at its best.
“The Devil and Tom Walker” and “The Devil and Daniel Webster”-- these Faust legends tell stories of ordinary men with thirsts for wealth and luck only in exchange for their very souls. Both were written in different time periods, where certain events and happenings influenced each of the stories and their conflicts. Washington Irving wrote “The Devil and Tom Walker” during a time of economic boom (1824). Stephen Vincent Benet wrote “The Devil and Daniel Webster” during a time of economic depression (1937). Despite the stories’ titles, both have different resolutions, depictions of the devil, and saving graces in the end.
In Erik Larson’s novel The Devil in the White City takes place during the Gilded Age. During this period of time everything appears good and golden on the outside when in reality everything was full of corruption. In the novel, the author takes the reader to the city of Chicago, where the city is “swelled “in population causing the city to expand in all “available directions” (Larson 44). As Chicago became the “second most populous [city] in the nation after New York” there was an urge that city show off to the world and the nation of how great it was through the Chicago World’s Fair (Larson 44). The Chicago World’s Fair was an opportunity for the city to come together and create event so spectacular to shock the world. However, as Chicago prepared to awe people with this extravagant fair the city faced skepticism on weather or not issues of urbanization, sanitation, and crime would be fixed in time for the World’s Fair.
Imagine going somewhere new, far away and ending up in a bad situation with no way out. That’s how Jurgis and his family felt when they left their home country of Lithuania to come to America to pursue their dreams of wealth. Their world was quickly turned upside down when they realized that the deck was stacked against them in Chicago’s unfair system, which was designed to leave them trapped. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair will bring you into the world of manipulation and poverty in Chicago during the 1900s.
The Chicago World’s Fair, one of America’s most compelling historical events, spurred an era of innovative discoveries and life-changing inventions. The fair brought forward a bright and hopeful future for America; however, there is just as much darkness as there is light and wonder. In the non-fiction novel, The Devil in the White City, architect Daniel Burnham and serial killer H. H. Holmes are the perfect representation of the light and dark displayed in Chicago. Erik Larson uses positive and negative tone, juxtaposition, and imagery to express that despite the brightness and newfound wonder brought on by the fair, darkness lurks around the city in the form of murder, which at first, went unnoticed.
The Devil in the White City is a historical non-fiction book written by Erik Larson that reads like a novel. The book follows two, real main characters, during the building and existence of the Chicago World’s fair. The first is an American architect named Daniel Burnham. The book follows his struggle and work to put this huge fair together, and also make it a huge profiting attraction. He faces many obstacles and internal conflict while doing so. The second is H. H. Holmes, an insane serial killer who was active during the existence of the fair. He had different businesses and practices he would use to lure women, in order to kill them and sometimes the women in their families. The book takes place in Chicago during the early 1890s, as
The Chicago World Fair stirred many emotions in this great time of industrialization, but not only was Chicago shining in the spotlight from the fair, it was also promoting something much more sinister, this dark enclosing spotlight shined directly on H.H Holmes. Burnham the leader of the World Fair and H. H Holmes the notorious serial killer, are the two main characters in this novel that Erik Larson uses the balance between light and dark between these two’s personalities. In the novel The Devil in the White City Erik Larson uses Imagery, paradox, and alliteration to show the balance between the light and dark in the ever growing city of Chicago.
Throughout the course of his The Devil in the White City, Erik Larson describes Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair through the eyes of two different main characters: Herman Webster Mudgett—a psychopathic serial killer who builds his famous “death castle” on the outskirts of the fairgrounds, and Daniel Burnham—the director of works for the World’s Columbian Exposition. Larson employs the use of many contrasting themes within his writing including success and failure, but perhaps most importantly, murder and beauty. In order to emphasize said themes, Larson juxtaposes the accounts of his two main characters: Mudgett and Burnham.
Washington Irving was the author of “The Devil and Tom Walker”, in his early life he began to study to be a lawyer, but soon falling away from that finding he had more interest in traveling and writing. Irving’s work including, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “Rip Van Winkle”, became known as an important part of American heritage today. The setting was in New England, the year 1727, just at the time that earthquakes were prevaled. Around the area of where Tom Walker had lived with his wife, Tom had found an old Indian fort which he chose to rest at on his way homeward. The main characters in “The Devil and Tom Walker” are obviously the Devil, “a great black man...neither Negro nor Indian” and Tom Walker who was a “miserly fellow”. Another