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Avgrundens folk – tekijä: Jack London

Avgrundens folk (1903)

– tekijä: Jack London, A. Berg

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
5622532,965 (4.04)33
A facsimile of the 1903 edition, this firsthand report of the plight of the poor at the end of the 19th century in the East End of London is a powerful indictment of economic injustice in the industrialized West.
Teoksen nimi:Avgrundens folk
Kirjailijat:Jack London
Muut tekijät:A. Berg
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
Arvio (tähdet):

Teoksen tarkat tiedot

The People of the Abyss (tekijä: Jack London) (1903)


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» Katso myös 33 mainintaa

englanti (21)  ranska (2)  italia (2)  espanja (1)  Kaikki kielet (26)
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 26) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
I'm an American. I'm middle class and in my neighborhood there are people who are not. It helps to remind me just how lucky I am. It's not always fun or safe. However, there isn't a sense that I'm not awake to what is happening to people in my country who aren't me.

Jack London has made a dramatic call to arms in this book. It's an emotional tale and he doesn't always hold to the same standards that I would expect from a modern day journalist. Still, this book is a keen reminder of how the British Empire ended. It was largely due to how it treated its losers. The UK is awake to this now and what a painful past. Unfortunately, history is repeating itself here in the US of A. We do better to offer support that is meaningful and timely. It's still too little, the gap is too large. It was difficult for me to read this book without recalling those down the street and those across the country. ( )
  ednasilrak | Jun 17, 2021 |
An intense expose of how the other 3/4 lived in late 19th century London. Yeah, it's grim, and grim to be reminded that that is the reality for the majority of the world today.

Still, others - like Orwell's "Down and out in Paris & London" - have a greater effect when dealing with the same subject. (Orwell is one of the best writers, in another league to Jack London)

It's OK, not too long, so three stars. ( )
  GirlMeetsTractor | Mar 22, 2020 |
This was a tough book. It was sort of first-hand sociology. Jack London decided to live in London's East End, as one of the down-and-outs there. This was back around 1900 (the book came out in 1902). His cover was that he was a stranded seaman. Once he dressed up shabbily enough, no one doubted him.

The book was essentially written in two parts. In the first half or so, London relates his experiences of living on the streets, visiting the homes of the destitute, getting in line for soup kitchens and work houses and so forth. Then in the second half, he discusses more the numbers of people involved, how 55% of the children born into extreme poverty in the East End die by age 5, how the British Empire is exporting the strong and abled out into their empire and away from England. As a result, England is becoming non-competitive on the world stage.

It's kind of the same problem as we have a century later on, the 1% at the top of the economic ladder are plundering the work and wages of the 50% at the bottom of the economic structure, and then blaming their victims for their being stunted and starved.

One interesting feature, to me, was that they kept wandering along Mile End Road. For a year, back in the dark ages, I worked at an establishment on Mile End Road: Queen Mary College, a part of the University of London. The section of Mile End Road along which I scurried daily, wasn't so bleak as the parts London trod some three quarters of a century earlier.
( )
  lgpiper | Jun 21, 2019 |
Jack London's "People of the Abyss" is two-fisted, brawling journalism from a master of the craft. I read "People of the Abyss" and reviewed it back in 2009. I then posted the review on Amazon dot com. I don't know what came of it because it's no longer there. I've put it up here because I like it a lot and I believe that some of the readers here will like it, too. So lace up your boxin' gloves cuz here it comes, folks- - - -

"People of the Abyss"

When somebody says "muckraker," I recall names such as Lincoln Steffens, Ray Stannard Baker, Upton Sinclair, Ida Tarbell, Izzy Stone and a few others. I never put Jack London in that category because books I associated with his name ("White Fang," "The Sea Wolf," et al.) were works of adventure fiction. I was aware of London's socialist-labor sympathies having read a few of his short stories: romances such as "South of the Slot" come to mind. But I never knew Jack London for a muckraker.

Now I've read "People of the Abyss," I'm willing to allow that Jack London was a muckraker. Still, I note that London's approach to muckraking was different than some. Where Ida Tarbell (for example) did years of research, gathered mountains of documented evidence and used something like 800 pages to expose the fetid monstrosity of John D. Rockefeller, Jack London did only a few weeks of legwork, composed just one airtight analogy and used only 232 pages to expose the fetid monstrosity of the British Empire and of civilization as we all know it.

"People of the Abyss" is jack London's eyewitness description of what laissez-faire capitalism ultimately wreaks upon the working class. He saw it all when, in the summer of 1902, he went to England disguised as a merchant seaman on the beach. Arriving in England, the American author dove headlong into the reeking labor ghetto at the notorious East End of London.

Walking the same mean streets that Jack the Ripper stalked just 12 years earlier, the American writer spent several months living the life of London's poor. He wore the rags. He ate the swill. He slept out in the weather. He visited lodgings in which families of six, eight or more dwelt in single, 7x8-foot rooms with no heat or water. He stayed in Dickensian workhouses. He visited hospitals that made people sick and asylums that drove people crazy. He worked for pennies a day while he watched multitudes of people slog through filth, disease and starvation to achieve misery, despair and death.

In this writer's ken, Jack London never wrote a book that didn't contain a purple passage or two. No surprise, then: "People of the Abyss" houses a few purple spots. But if London was a passionate writer, he was also a damned good one. He understood that rhetoric won't stand without facts to support it. He also understood that a long recitation of bald facts will alienate most readers. Accordingly, London's "Abyss" uses few statistics and those few statistics are shrewdly chosen. The following paragraph (p. 178) is about as thick as the narrative gets:

"The figures are appalling: 1.8 million people in London live on the poverty line and below it, and another one million live with one week's wages between them and pauperism. In all of England and Wales, eighteen percent of the whole population are driven to the parish for relief, and in London, according to the statistics of the London County Council, twenty-one percent of the whole population are driven to the parish for relief. Between being "driven to the parish for relief" and being an out-and-out pauper there is a great difference, yet London supports 123,000 paupers, quite a city of folk in themselves. One of every four in London dies on public charity, while 939 out of every 1,000 in the United Kingdom die in poverty; 8 million simply struggle on the ragged edge of starvation, and 20 million more are not comfortable in the simple and clean sense of the word."

The bulk of London's narration describes with horrid clarity what it meant to be "driven to the parish for relief" and to be "not comfortable in the simple and clean sense of the word." Here it should suffice to say that in America today, free-range cattle and hogs are typically more "comfortable" than poor Britons of 1902.

For all it tells a depressing story, "People of the Abyss" is an almighty good book that offers today's American reader plenty to think about. Tales of parents who killed themselves after murdering children for whom they could not provide ring all too familiar in the ears of any American working stiff today. Even more chilling is the realization that we today are led by a pack of evil morons who want to do away with "entitlements" such as Social Security, Medicare, and Food Stamps so we can all enjoy the good old days that (they assure us) prevailed in America before such foolish and wasteful programs existed.

Jack London was a great writer who never wrote better than he reads in this swaggering reprint from California's Sonoma State University and Joseph Simon, Publisher. The Sonoma State edition of "People of the Abyss" features the author's gritty, b&w photographs of Blighty's poor and their life in the ghetto. , a Foreword by Clarence Stasz, and a Preface by the author. This particular edition features an artsy hardcover and a sturdy, protective slipcase!

Best of all is Jack London's narration. The tone of the author in this particular work will curl your hair, stiffen your spine, and stand you right up on your hind legs. "The People of the Abyss" -- Read it. Get mad. Join a union. Raise Hell!

"The People of the Abyss"
Jack London
Sonoma State University Press
ISBN (0-934710-03-1) ( )
1 ääni NathanielPoe | Mar 2, 2019 |
Letteratura straniera del XIX secolo
  bibliotecaristofane | May 9, 2018 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 26) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
ei arvosteluja | lisää arvostelu

» Lisää muita tekijöitä (26 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Jack Londonensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetlaskettu
Lindsay, JackJohdantomuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Sinun täytyy kirjautua sisään voidaksesi muokata Yhteistä tietoa
Katso lisäohjeita Common Knowledge -sivuilta (englanniksi).
Kanoninen teoksen nimi
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Alkuteoksen nimi
Teoksen muut nimet
Tiedot espanjankielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Alkuperäinen julkaisuvuosi
Tärkeät paikat
Tiedot ranskankielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Tärkeät tapahtumat
Kirjaan liittyvät elokuvat
Palkinnot ja kunnianosoitukset
Epigrafi (motto tai mietelause kirjan alussa)
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
The chief priests and rulers cry:- /

“O Lord and Master, not ours the guilt, /
We build but as our fathers built; /
Behold thine images how they stand /
Sovereign and sole through all our land. /

“Our task is hard—with sword and flame, /
To hold thine earth forever the same, /
And with sharp crooks of steel to keep, / Still as thou leftest them, thy sheep.” /

Then Christ sought out an artisan, /
A low-browed, stunted, haggard man, /
And a motherless girl whose fingers thin /
Crushed from her faintly want and sin. /

These set he in the midst of them, /
And as they drew back their garment hem /
For fear of defilement, “Lo, here,” said he, /
“The images ye have made of me.”

Ensimmäiset sanat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
The experiences related in this volume fell to me in the summer of 1902. I went down into the under-world of London with an attitude of mind which I may best liken to that of the explorer.
Viimeiset sanat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
(Napsauta nähdäksesi. Varoitus: voi sisältää juonipaljastuksia)
Kirjan kehujat
Alkuteoksen kieli
Kanoninen DDC/MDS
Kanoninen LCC

Viittaukset tähän teokseen muissa lähteissä.

Englanninkielinen Wikipedia


A facsimile of the 1903 edition, this firsthand report of the plight of the poor at the end of the 19th century in the East End of London is a powerful indictment of economic injustice in the industrialized West.

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