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Oil!by Upton Sinclair
Synopses & Reviews
In Oil! Upton Sinclair fashioned a novel out of the oil scandals of the Harding administration, providing in the process a detailed picture of the development of the oil industry in Southern California. Bribery of public officials, class warfare, and international rivalry over oil production are the context for Sinclair's story of a genial independent oil developer and his son, whose sympathy with the oilfield workers and socialist organizers fuels a running debate with his father. Senators, small investors, oil magnates, a Hollywood film star, and a crusading evangelist people the pages of this lively novel.
"Sinclair's 1927 novel did for California's oil industry what The Jungle did for Chicago's meat-packing factories." Library Journal
Upton Sinclair's classic revelatory novel about turn-of-the-century business and immigrant labor practices--with an afterword by Dr. Barry Sears, the New York Times bestselling author of The Zone.
Jurgis Rudkus, a young Lithuanian immigrant in search of a better life, faces instead an epic struggle for survival. His story of factory life in Chicago in the early twentieth century is a saga of barbarous working conditions, crushing poverty, crime, disease, and despair.
Upton Sinclairs vivid depiction of the horrors of Chicagos stockyards and slaughterhouses aroused such public indignation that a government investigation was called, eventually resulting in the passage of pure food laws. More than a hundred years later, The Jungle continues to pack the same emotional power it did when it was first published.
There Will Be Blood wins a 2008 Golden Globes Award. Read about it here.
There Will Be Blood wins two 2008 Academy Awards. Read about it here.
Penguin Books is proud to now be the sole publisher of Oil!, the classic 1927 novel by Upton Sinclair. After writing The Jungle, his scathing indictment of the meatpacking industry, Sinclair turned his sights on the early days of the California oil industry in a highly entertaining story featuring a cavalcade of characters including senators, oil magnets, Hollywood film starlets, and a crusading evangelist.
This lively and panoramic book, which was recently cited by David Denby in the New Yorker as being Sinclair’s “most readable” novel, is now the inspiration for the Paramount Vantage major motion picture, There Will Be Blood. It is the long-awaited film from Paul Thomas Anderson, one of the most admired filmmakers working today whose previous movies, Boogie Nights and Magnolia were both multiple Academy Award nominees. The movie stars Oscar-winner Daniel Day-Lewis (Gangs of New York, My Left Foot) and Paul Dano (Little Miss Sunshine).
Paramount Vantage will be releasing the film in New York and Los Angeles on December 26, 2007 and go nationwide in January. This is the same company responsible for Babel and A Mighty Heart and the current releases, Into the Wild, Margot at the Wedding, and The Kite Runner.
As wars rage on in the oil region and as anxiety over natural resources rise, the subject of this book, which celebrates its 80th anniversary in 2007, is more timely than ever.
About the Author
Upton Sinclair (1878-1968) was born in Baltimore. At age fifteen, he began writing a series of dime novels in order to pay for his education at the City College of New York. He was later accepted to do graduate work at Columbia, and while there he published a number of novels, including The Journal of Arthur Stirling (1903) and Manassas (1904). Sinclair’s breakthrough came in 1906 with the publication of The Jungle, a scathing indictment of the Chicago meat-packing industry. His later works include World’s End (1940), Dragon’s Teeth (1942), which won him a Pulitzer Prize, O Shepherd, Speak! (1949) and Another Pamela (1950).
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