Babbitt

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Prometheus Books - Fiction
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In this sardonic portrait of the up-and-coming middle class during America's most prosperous decade before the Great Depression, Sinclair Lewis perfectly captures the sound, the feel, and the attitudes of the generation that created the cult of consumer materialism that we all take for granted today. With a sharp eye for detail and keen powers of observation, Lewis tracks George Babbitt's daily struggles to rise to the top of his profession while maintaining his reputation as an upstanding family man.But beneath the complacent fatade Lewis also reveals a confused interior Babbitt who is experiencing a rising, nameless discontent. His wife bores him, his children get on his nerves, his cronies at the club suddenly strike him as shallow, and for all of his success he can't shake the feeling that the sum of his life amounts to little more than a hollow shell. These feelings eventually lead Babbitt into risky escapades that threaten his family and his standing in the community.Though published eighty years ago, this acerbic depiction of majority Americans, obsessed with success, material comfort, and mid-life doubt, still rings true. Lewis's enduring portrait remains a discomfiting reminder that there is a little of George Babbitt in all of us.
 

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Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
14
Section 3
38
Section 4
51
Section 5
68
Section 6
91
Section 7
103
Section 8
147
Section 15
264
Section 16
270
Section 17
280
Section 18
293
Section 19
302
Section 20
311
Section 21
320
Section 22
331

Section 9
203
Section 10
213
Section 11
224
Section 12
235
Section 13
250
Section 14
257
Section 23
349
Section 24
361
Section 25
369
Section 26
381
Section 27
391
Copyright

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About the author

Harry Sinclair Lewis was born on February 7, 1885 in Minnesota. He was an American novelist, short-story writer, and playwright. In 1930, he became the first writer from the United States to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature. A lonely child, Lewis immersed himself in reading and diary writing. While studying at Yale University and living in writer Upton Sinclair's communal house, he wrote for Yale Literary Magazine and helped to build the Panama Canal. After graduating from Yale in 1908, Lewis began writing fiction, publishing 22 novels by the end of his career. His early works, while often praised by literary critics, did not reach popularity but with Main Street (1920), Babbitt (1922), Arrowsmith (1925), Elmer Gantry (1927), and Dodsworth (1929), Sinclair Lewis achieved fame as a writer. His style of choice was satire; he explored American small-town life, conformity, hypocrisy, and materialism. Sinclair Lewis was married and divorced twice. As his career wound down, he spent his later life in Europe and died in Rome on January 10, 1951.

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