Jonfaith’s review of The Jungle > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Jonfaith (new)

Jonfaith It felt to be an apt choice for Labor Day weekend.

message 2: by Diane (new)

Diane Good review, Jonfaith. I think this is one of those books that it's easier to read about than to actually read. It's important that someone wrote about those conditions, but I'm glad to know I can skip this one.

message 3: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten I keep passing on this book and your review confirms my suspicions. Thanks for taking one for the team Jonfaith.

message 4: by Keven (new)

Keven Actually this book inspired me to read more beyond the comic books I was obsessed with as a teen. I can say that everyone is entitled to their opinion, but this book is a classic for a reason right up there with Lord of the Flies, Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, and The Outsiders. In my opinion it's a book that really sticks to you.

message 5: by anday (new)

anday androo I like your comment about being grateful you "didn't live 110 years ago". I often have commented how countries like China and India are now experiencing the same labor pains that the US experienced at the turn of the 20th century. On the one hand, it gives me hope for the globalization thing that is happening, but on the other it worries me that no has learned anything from the struggles of our great-grandparents.

message 6: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Webster The literary quality of this book isn't in the beauty of metaphor or in its depth of character. Its quality is in its truthful portrayal of the grimy underbelly of what was supposed to be a better life in the New World and instead what immigrants found was paternalistic discrimination at every turn. Granted, the book takes more effort than the average reader is willing to exert, but it is very worth doing so when we begin to understand just how difficult it was to make a decent living in an unknown place that doesn't value human life.

message 7: by Amy (new)

Amy .@Rebecca The problem with that though is that it should've been written as a nonfiction exposé instead of trying to shoehorn it into a fictional story. There are many WONDERFUL pieces of literature that provide social commentary, this is not one of them. The information in this book is so important and valuable. But the author so clearly had an agenda that he chose above serving characters or plot. His motivations were good, but he either needed to write a nonfiction book or be much more subtle about his agenda and not sacrifice the narrative for it.

I'm thinking particularly of Matthew Desmond's Evicted, a nonfiction book released this year that brilliantly weaved factual research with personal stories in a way that makes you much more attached to the people as well as pointing out a serious systemic problem with rent prices and shady landlords.

message 8: by Amy (new)

Amy *Also forgive the numerous grammatical errors. It's quarter to 4am, my mind is tired, and I'm on my phone and can't go back to fix them now. :(

message 9: by Beau (new)

Beau "I am EVER so grateful that I didn't live 110 years ago and was forced to compete economically under those conditions."
I think one of the points of the book is to wake the privileged public up to the fact that such atrocities of human suffering were taking place. Reading it in the 21st century, my sympathies for today's suffering people were certainly jarred. You don't have to go back 110 years to find injustices such as those in The Jungle. Today there are poor, starving, manipulated, and used peoples all over the globe. A great piece of writing such as The Jungle is timeless. Also, I don't see why it should have been written as non-fiction. As a work of fiction, I learned the basic truths of 1906 Chicago while being entertained at the same time. It was a fast read and easy read that was a best-seller and made a real impact.

message 10: by Samuel (new)

Samuel Pichet I personally find it very more interesting they way he write the book. I feel more close to the main family as I had the time to know them in they more intimate moments.

Maybe he was not the best at it, but it was, in fact, very successful, and the good thing to do.

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