“They used me to the point where I had no body parts left to give, then they just tossed me into the trash can” –Kenny Dobbins. Upton Sinclair’s novel The Jungle and Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation: the Dark Side of the All-American Meal explore the exploitation of workers in the meatpacking industry. In The Jungle, Sinclair describes the various adversities that a workingman went through to survive in the early nineteen hundreds, through the life of a Lithuanian immigrant family living in Chicago. Likewise, Schlosser writes about the current challenges that workers of the meatpacking industry experience and the replaceable way they are treated. Although both Sinclair and Schlosser convey the apathetic usage and exploitation of
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He was a strong, able man, who trusted his employers, but repeatedly got injured at work and after an extreme injury, his employers fired him without notification. Inclement employers that did not care of him, only of what he gave them, stole his health from him (186-190). Throughout both books, there are tales in which the apathetic meatpacking industry uses and throws away workers without regard.
Even though both The Jungle and Fast Food Nation share many qualities, they focus on different aspects of mistreatment toward workers. Sinclair describes the unsanitary condition in which the meatpackers were forced to work in during the early nineteen hundreds. He writes how the floors were feculent and how it was almost impossible for the workers to keep themselves clean. The working environment was so filthy that the workers were petrified of cutting themselves with a knife because many would become septic and perish. Workers were purposely given dangerous jobs, just to increase the production of the processed meat. For instance, the protagonist’s father, Dede Antanas, died because he was consumed by the noxious chemicals he cleaned off the floor of one of the cooking rooms of the slaughterhouse (75, 95-96). Stanislovas, another character of The Jungle, fell asleep at work and was devoured by rats (353). Sinclair describes how men that worked in the cooking rooms often fell into vats and