I remember reading this in undergrad (I have a degree in English lit). It's a great, harrowing novel in the journalistic muckraking tradition. Written by Upton Sinclair who set out to write a series of articles about the meat packing plants of the 20's, was it? And found conditions so horrible that he turned it into an entire novel. Readers became so outraged that they started rioting, or something, and all this led to the creation of the FDA.

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