History Professor's Book List Reminds Us It's a Jungle out There

By Hyman, Ann | The Florida Times Union, September 6, 1999 | Go to article overview

History Professor's Book List Reminds Us It's a Jungle out There


Hyman, Ann, The Florida Times Union


Several months ago, the Times-Union asked readers which books were most influential in the 20th century.

James B. Crooks, a history professor at the University of North Florida, took the assignment seriously. Crooks began thinking about his list of representative books while swimming laps.

He reports he had a heckuva time narrowing his choices.

Finally, he assembled three lists: one of fiction, one of history and one of contemporary non-fiction. All have had a major impact on American society. As a bonus, he threw in a list of Jacksonville books.

Here are Crooks' lists.

FICTION:

The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair, a classic of the 20th century for its exposure of the meat packing industry of Chicago. "It led to passage of the first Pure Food and Drug Act, and I believe was a best-seller."

Babbitt, by Sinclair Lewis, creates the businessman stereotype of the 1920s so well that the term Babbitt has carried the connotation of a "go-getter, anti-intellectual, self-satisfied, back-slapping businessman ever since."

The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck, the novel of the Great Depression.

Invisible Man, by Ralph Ellison, a close choice over Richard Wright's Black Boy. "Both are powerful novels about African-Americans, but the former covers a broader canvas of Southern rural and Northern urban existence, and a longer time period in the 20th century."

U.S.A., the trilogy by John Dos Passos, . . . "when I read it in college some 40 years ago in an American lit class, it was my favorite for its nitty-gritty portrayal of urban America between the first and second world wars.

CONTEMPORARY NON-FICTION:

The Feminine Mystique, by Betty Friedan, ranks with "the most important books of the century because it literally began the post World War II women's liberation movement."

The Sea Around Us, by Rachel Carson, did the same for the environmental movement. "Its publication awoke middle class Americans to environmental concerns in the 1970s and beyond."

The Other America, by Michael Harrington, depicting poverty in the affluent America of the 1950s, a catalyst to Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty.

The Kerner Commission Report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorder and An American Dilemma, by Gunnar Myrdal. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

History Professor's Book List Reminds Us It's a Jungle out There
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.