New York: The Jungle Publishing Co., 1906.
New York: The Jungle Publishing Co., 1906. First edition. One of approximately 5,000 copies of the self-published, "Sustainers' Edition" with the label tipped onto the front paste-down. A Near Fine copy overall with some loss to the white spine titles and minor offsetting to the paste-downs. Overall an exceptional copy of this important political work.
Upton Sinclair's The Jungle was a groundbreaking exposé of the horrors and injustices of the meatpacking industry. The novel follows a family of Lithuanian immigrants in Chicago’s Packingtown, revealing the underbelly of industrial food production and the dark side of the American dream. For seven weeks the author went undercover at several meatpacking facilities to research the unsanitary conditions, exploitation of workers, mistreatment of animals, which formed the basis of his novel. Sinclair had hoped this story would be a call-to-arms for labor rights, but he found the public was more disturbed by the lack of sanitation in food production. He reflected, “I aimed at the public’s heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach.” So shocking was his account and so extreme the public outcry that the U.S. government passed multiple pieces of legislation in the aftermath of its publication—Pure Food and Drug Act and the Meat Inspection Act (1906)—forever altering American food production. Near Fine (Item #5899)