In early 1900, specifically, 1906, The Jungle by Upton Sinclair was written. This novel told the story of a Lithuanian immigrant who worked in a filthy Chicago meatpacking plant. It exposed the meatpacking industry by stating their vile practices not only towards their meat but their workers as well. This was a result of the combination of many immigrants in the United States to pursue a better life, and the fact that many big industries were looking for ways to maximize their profit.
Intro: When people eat food they do not think about what is in it, or how it is made. The only thing people care about is what the food tastes like and how much they get. During the 1900’s the meat packing industry had not regulations of any kind. All that mattered to the industry was that they made as much money as possible with as little expenditure as possible. During this times people were often made sick and died either from working conditions or poor food quality. Although it may seem that the meat packing industry is still in turmoil because of their unwillingness to make known what foods have Genetically Modified organisms present, the meat packing industry was much worse during the 1900’s because of the unsafe working conditions, and uncleanliness of the food.
“Over 200 people are killed each year at work in the UK and over 150,000 are injured. Two million people suffer from illnesses that have been caused, or made worse, by their work” (Aldworth, 2010)
The Progressive Era was a period of time, from 1890 to 1920, that people start believing that the society problem could be faded by providing a safe environment, good education and an efficient workplace. The people who wanted changes in the society were called Progressives. Most of them were well educated, journalist, they went to college. There were a lot of problems that people tried to fix them or improve them, most of them were fixed but other we are still trying to fix them. During this period there were a lot of issues and problems but there were some prominent ones, like: Women Suffrage, Temperance or Food and Health.
The public now trusted Sinclair, but he was able to use his newfound power as a muckraker to reveal corruptions in society and was able to help the common man's life to be a little easier. Through passage of bills such as the Pure Food and Drug Act, much of the New Deal legislations, and reform in many factories, Sinclair was effectively able to create a better society than the one he was born into. Sinclair’s childhood in poverty allowed him to empathize with regular workers, gave him motivation to help end poverty through politics, and even to continue his efforts after he gained some wealth and power. His sense of justice for the common worker and all those suffering due to poverty overarched many of his works and is seen even in many of his personal letters. After the publication of The Jungle, changes has been made to help protect citizens from diseased meat, but Sinclair still thought that more could be done to make the industry titans more reliable. He corresponded President Roosevelt with his concerns, “You must understand that the thing which I have called the ‘condemned meat industry’, is a matter of hundreds of thousands of dollars a month” (Department of Agriculture). Writing The Jungle was not just a way for Sinclair to gain popularity, he genuinely cared for his fellow Americans, and wrote to the president to fight and win justice for
“The great corporation which employed you lied to you, and lied to the whole country—from top to bottom it was nothing but one gigantic lie” (Upton Sinclair).The revolutionary figure that will be addressed in this essay is the one and only Upton Sinclair. Through most of his life, starting from the age of 14, Sinclair was invested in voicing his opinions through fiction. He did this by taking a real-life issue and integrating it into the plot of his literature while a point of view in that literature is given to a fictional character representing something or someone related to the real-life issue. Although Upton Sinclair didn’t intend to, he improved the meat-packing industry’s cleanliness and ethics by revealing unethical practices and being
Sinclair exposed the problem of mutilated limbs and other horrors common to the workers. Sinclair also explained how even minor injuries could become fatal and how the labor intense work done at the factories caused workers to experience swollen joints (doc 1). Unfortunately, no laws were passed to protect workers from the awful conditions they faced. Although Sinclair’s attempt at reforming working conditions was fruitless, the public’s reaction to the truth about the meat they were purchasing sparked a nationwide attempt to enact consumer protection laws. The meat packing factories were doctoring their products with chemicals so they could profit from rotten meat. The unsanitary factories were also home to rats, rat poisons, germs, dust, and dirt. The workers put contaminated meat into the meat choppers. Moldy and otherwise inedible meat was doused in chemicals and ground into sausages. When the public found out about these scandals, many were repulsed and demanded immediate government action. The government responded with the Meat Inspection Act of 1906 and the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906. The Meat Inspection Act allowed, “the Secretary of
Unsafe working conditions plagued next to, if not, all factories during industrialization. Thousands of workers grew ill or suffered injuries as a consequence of their labor, and would yield their jobs, surrendering their source of income. Taken in the early 1900s, “Lewis Hine’s picture depicts two children working on a very dangerous machine” (Document 8). The matter that children were allowed to manage these machines is awful enough, ignoring just how dangerous the machines were. In addition to this, the children did not appear to be well supervised, which made it all too easy for a disastrous injury to occur. In addition to this, Elizabeth Bentley testified regarding her deformities, answering that she was indeed “considerably deformed in
Without a doubt, industrialization was one of the biggest factors in how the United States developed. It gave us the means of mass production, better transportation, and eventually the consumerist society that the United States is today. Industrialization did drastically change American society, but did it change America for the better? Did it do more good than bad? While industrialization did lead to multiple social and economic problems, the advantages significantly outweigh the disadvantages.
“The Jungle” was horrifying to many Americans, because they had not been aware of what was going on. After the book was published, many laws were put in place and many changes were made to the working conditions of these factories. In 1906, after the release of “The
Upton Sinclair’s, The Jungle is a novel, which affected the food industry in 1900’s but also in America today. People have learned over the years the truths about the food industry, revealed through Sinclair’s detailed evidence. Sinclair meant to aim at the public’s heart but instead he shot straight at their stomachs. One would easily be convinced to never again buy or eat meat again. Fortunately, people have seen changes from 1906 and have been currently trying to repair the Food Industry. The food industry has better improvements yet; it still needs a thorough cleansing. Although food production has bettered in the last 100 years by its treatment of workers and government’s oversight, it has had some adverse effects like company’s protection
In the literary work, The Jungle, the author, Upton Sinclair makes a commentary on the deceitful and dark truth of the American dream. This was achieved by using the canned meat that was produced in Packingtown as a symbol to represent the dream that all the immigrants had about their new lives in America. As the story progresses, the reader, along with the protagonist, Jurgis will discover that the American dream lies cloaked behind a shroud of beautiful lies that masks the vile truths that are the American dream and the canned “beef” processed by the corrupt meat business in Packingtown.
While the Socialists were pleased with the propaganda aspect, the wider audience was more concerned with the suggestion of what might be going into their meat. Eric Closer, in his foreword to The Jungle, comments on this. American readers responded in a way that Sinclair had not expected. They were outraged by his account of unsanitary conditions in the nation’s slaughterhouses. Sausage made from rancid meat laced with chemicals… Fee hearts and other organ meats artificially colored and sold as canned chicken… A worker accidentally killed and boiled and turned into lard–although these descriptions filled a small fraction of the book, they dominated the media frenzy surrounding its publication (Sinclair ix). Sinclair was very disappointed by the fact that the people were so selfishly concerned rather than wanting to improve the situation of the workers, saying “l aimed at the publics heart and by accident hit them in the stomach” (Sinclair
Carl Jensen was an author, newspaper reporter, advertising executive, and professor at Sonoma State University. He also founded Project Censored in 1976, a research project on news media censorship, and acted as the director of the program which has remained an important part of the University’s journalistic curriculum since its inception. The techniques used by Jensen to teach journalism have been accepted and used by colleges throughout the country based upon their exceptional quality and standards. Jensen was a strong advocate of the idea of freedom of speech and expression espoused in the First Amendment of the U.S.
Compared to the First Industrial Revolution where only few laws or regulations existed for the workers, more labor laws were created during the Second Industrial Revolution, aiming to ensure the safety of the workers. A series of further Acts, which was regulated during 1860 and 1872, aimed to strengthen the safety provisions of the workers. The Act included the first regulation that legalized safeguards for health, life and limb (Wikipedia).