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The Jungle Analysis

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Throughout the beginning of the novel The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair, the main protagonist, Jurgis Rudkus, states multiple times “I will work harder” (Sinclair 24) in reference to his ever growing debts. Jurgis attempting to work his way out of his problems is symbolic of the many immigrants coming to America at the time. These immigrants came to America, the land of opportunity, that brought in people from around the world to work. But unbeknownst to these immigrants, within a few days inside of America, as it was for Jurgis, “this land of high wages had been sufficient to make clear to them the cruel fact that it was also a land of high prices” (Sinclair 31). Such begins the downward spiral of Jurgis and his family along with the many immigrant families at the time. These families are necessitating more work for their ever growing debts, and their constant efforts to thwart such failing. Jurgis’ mentioning of him working harder in order to save himself and his family also can be used to reference his shifting of his mindset throughout the novel. In the beginning, he is fresh and looking for work and believes that he will be able to work his way out of any rut that is in his way. However, as the story progresses, Jurgis’ soul and spirit become crushed by the city and its way of life. This constant antagonist to his well being lead him to, for a period of time, leaving the city and hoboing the countryside. Jurgis’ spirit was crushed until a point where his former ideals
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