Book review: The Jungle; writer Sinclair, Upton

Sinclair, Upton: writer (Pulitzer Prize winner), politician (Socialist), philanthropist.

The Jungle – 1906

The making of America with blood, guts and cruelty – is one of the thoughts that come to mind when the shock of this novel is contemplated. The book relentlessly depicts the truly ghastly side of human nature, and the setting is America. Poignantly, it is related through the experiences of a Russian immigrant, a young man strong and willing. The opening is a marriage, one of the most hopeful rites of passage young people can undertake. From then on the horror of the stock yards and slaughter houses in Chicago, are told and the unfolding tragedy is as terrible for man, as it is for beast.  Sinclair is so desperate to impart his despair that he appeals directly to his readers. He worries that no poet has ever written movingly about poverty that leads to homelessness, starvation, and disease and inevitable death.  Who, enjoying good literature, would read it? Another question possibly to ponder is: who of the wealthy would believe it? Aren’t the poor responsible for their poverty?

Sinclair’s hero, the male of the species, is so overwhelmed by his experiences that he runs away from his remaining family. It is the females that are left to survive and the only way they can is by adopting the oldest profession of them all.  This is beyond terrible, as here are the stories of human trafficking and doping of young horrified victims with morphine. There is no escape from the brothel. The human sacrifice is so that the children can eat.

While the human tragedy is perturbing enough, Sinclair perhaps writes his most lyrical passages about the murder of pigs. He muses that there must be a God of pigs who would welcome them to heaven and thank them for their sacrifice. * All of the pig is used and it is only the squeal that is not, is the jest at the slaughter house.  The dying cattle are treated with equal sympathy; they form a river of death. This reviewer’s fantasy of the great American cattle drives of the last century was finally laid to rest. The romance of the cowboys bit the dust years ago.

Surprisingly, Sinclair writes so well and constructs a story line that it is so gripping, interesting, and informed, that the novel is hard to put down.  As sad as it is, the tale is peppered with researched facts and figures, so that one does not get swept away by the emotion of it all. It is a novel written by a man for men (they were the legislators at the time of writing).

A concluding thought for what it is worth:  this novel describes an America that would allow the sale of guns at super markets.

*Rupert Brook (1887 – 1915) poem : Heaven.

Time line:

1659 – First recorded immigration of Lithuanians to America

1877 – Black Beauty published (changes laws for cab drivers and working horses)

1906 – Pure Food Act and Meat Inspection Act passed in America – 6 months after the publication   of this novel

1917 – Russian Revolution

1920 – Women get the vote in America

1929 – 1939 – Great Depression

How to Change the Way You Think

How to Change the Way You Think

By Amy Sharp


A formula for positive thinking, enabling the reader to effect a change in his or her life for the better.

The world that you create begins with your thoughts. This book is meant to help you transform the way you think about yourself,…

Bible verses


The bible is a collection of sacred texts or scriptures that Jews and Christians consider to be a product of divine inspiration and a record of the relationship between God and humans. With estimated total sales of over 5 billion copies, it is widely considered to be the most influential and best-selling book of all time.

How many verses?

The classical versions of the Protestant canon of the Bible (David Martin, Ostervald, Darwin, King James) contain31,102 verses:

– 23,145 verses in the Old Testament, 7,957 verses in the New Testament.

Their number varies according to the printed versions, because of the division of certain psalms which include or not the dedications

How many books are in the bible?

The Bible consists of a total of 66 books39 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament.
The Catholic Bible consists of 73 books46 books of the Old Testament and the 27 books of the New Testament.

King James Bible (Protestant)

   Old Testament

1-  Genesis
2-  Exodus
3-  Leviticus
4-  Numbers
5 – Deuteronomy
6-  Joshua
7-  Judges
8-  Ruth
9-  1 Samuel (1 Kings)
10-  2 Samuel (2 Kings)
11-  1 Kings (3 Kings)
12-  2 Kings (4 Kings)
13-  1 Chronicles
14-   2 Chronicles
15-  Ezra
16  -Nehemiah
17-  Esther
18-  Job
19-  Psalms
20-  Proverbs
21-  Ecclesiastes
22-  Song of Solomon (Canticles)
23-  Isaiah
24-  Jeremiah
25-  Lamentations
26-  Ezekiel
27-  Daniel
28-  Hosea
29-  Joel
30-  Amos
31- Obadiah
32-  Jonah
33-  Micah
34-  Nahum
35-  Habakkuk
36-  Zephaniah
37-  Haggai
38-  Zechariah
39-  Malachi

New Testament

1- Matthew
2- Mark
3- Luke
4- John
5- Acts
6- Romans
7- 1 Corinthians
8- 2 Corinthians
9- Galatians
10- Ephesians
11- Philippians
12- Colossians
13- 1 Thessalonians
14- 2 Thessalonians
15- 1 Timothy
16- 2 Timothy
17- Titus
18- Philemon
19- Hebrews
20- James
21- 1 Peter
22- 2 Peter
23- 1 John
24- 2 John
25- 3 John
26- Jude
27- Revelation

The deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament are:

1- Tobit
2- Judith
3- Wisdom (also called the Wisdom of Solomon)
4- Sirach (also called Ecclesiasticus)
5- Baruch, including the Letter of Jeremiah (Additions to
Jeremiah in the Septuagint)
6- 1 Maccabees
7- 2 Maccabees

Base on the explanation given by St. Mary’s Catholic Campus Ministry

The Catholic Bible contains all the books that have traditionally been accepted by Christians since the Canon of Scripture was recognized by the

Synod of Rome in 382.

The earliest Christians did not have an exactly defined canon of Scripture. Concerning the books of the Old Testament, the early Church generally used the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament, translated about 250 B.C.). There was a difference within Judaism before Christ about the Old Testament. The Alexandrian canon was the longer canon and was the basis for the Septuagint.



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