Upton Sinclair

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Sinclair, Upton

(Upton Beall Sinclair), 1878–1968, American novelist and socialist activist, b. Baltimore, grad. College of the City of New York, 1897. He was one of the muckrakersmuckrakers,
name applied to American journalists, novelists, and critics who in the first decade of the 20th cent. attempted to expose the abuses of business and the corruption in politics.
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, and a dedication to social and industrial reform underlies most of his writing. The Jungle (1906), a brutally graphic novel of the Chicago stockyards, aroused great public indignation and led to reform of federal food inspection laws. With the money earned from that novel, Sinclair established (1906) a short-lived socialist community, Helicon Home Colony, at Englewood, N.J., and a decade later he moved to Southern California. Among Sinclair's other novels exposing social evils are King Coal (1917), Oil! (1927), Boston (on the Sacco-Vanzetti CaseSacco-Vanzetti Case
. On Apr. 15, 1920, a paymaster for a shoe company in South Braintree, Mass., and his guard were shot and killed by two men who escaped with over $15,000. It was thought from reports of witnesses that the murderers were Italians.
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, 1928), and Little Steel (1938). In his social studies, such as The Brass Check (1919), on journalism, and The Goose-Step (1923), on education, he tried to uncover the harmful effects of capitalist economic pressure on institutions of learning and culture.

An ardent socialist, Sinclair was in and out of the American Socialist party and, under its aegis, ran unsuccessfully for congressman, senator, and governor. In 1934 he was again defeated, this time as the Democratic party's candidate for California governor. World's End (1940) is the first of a cycle of 11 novels that deal with world events since 1914 and feature the fictional Lanny Budd as hero; the third, Dragon's Teeth (1942), won a Pulitzer Prize. Many of Sinclair's more than 90 books have been widely translated.


See his autobiography (1962) and reminiscences, American Outpost (1932) and My Lifetime in Letters (1960); biographies by L. Harris (1975), A. Arthur (2006), and K. Mattson (2006); studies by F. Dell (1927, repr. 1970), A. Blinderman, ed. (1975), J. A. Yoder (1975), W. A. Bloodworth, Jr. (1977), and R. N. Mookerjee (1988); bibliography by R. Gottesman (1973).

References in periodicals archive ?
After accepting the Upton Sinclair Award, Paris Barclay revealed his own interesting connection to the U.
1) It is likely that Upton Sinclair means Over the Hill to the Poorhouse (Millarde 1920).
Carolyn Chute's sympathetic portrayals of the rural poor evoked comparisons to Faulkner, Steinbeck, and Upton Sinclair.
Upton Sinclair reflexiona sobre el petroleo como un bien que desencadena la ambicion.
Also among the documents is a note to Stalin from American author and politician Upton Sinclair, begging the dictator to spare the life of a young Soviet cinematographer.
The objective of The Jungle, according to Upton Sinclair, was to expose the harsh, inhumane working conditions in the meat packing industry.
So impressed is Bob Novak by the revelations in The Big Ripoff that he feels that Tim Carney should be put in the same category as Upton Sinclair, whose book The Jungle allegedly revealed the scandalous goings-on within the meatpacking industry more than a century ago.
Then the back cover piles it on some more: "This is the version of 'The Jungle' that Upton Sinclair very badly wanted to be the standard edition--not the gutted, much shorter commercial version with which we're all familiar.
What would Charles Dickens or Upton Sinclair say about today's score-obsessed classrooms?
But perhaps that was just a skirmish, and what Gore is doing with this film is fighting a guerilla war, using a delicious quote from Upton Sinclair as his weapon of Bush destruction: 'It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it'.
The meat industry was unregulated, and the only person with the stomach to look closely at the resulting product was Upton Sinclair, muckraker extraordinaire.
In 1906, Upton Sinclair published The Jungle, exposing the dangerous and unsanitary conditions of meatpacking plants.