Birth of The Impersonal Forces: An Analysis of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle, and An Interpretation of History

By Trudy A. Martinez

In the year 1865, a drastic, calculated, change took place in America. The pre-destined change was domed to affect nearly every aspect of individuality for generations to come. It was learned from the past, ready to control the future and the destiny of millions. A special secret (their symbol) the Red, White, and Blue, which was guarded since the birth of their religion, had the purpose of joining the common man together, thus strengthening its falsified image, allowing them to go forward toward progressivism. The force with such OVER-WHELMING strength would condition the minds of the common people to accept and withstand the cry of agony, hunger, death, while tilting the scales of justice in favor of social injustice. This was the Main Impersonal Force which would cause to replace or alter the common man’s value system so as to conform to its purpose of a new religion. It would create a New Article of Faith, undermined by Radicalism, fueled by greed, and chosen as an alternative to prevent revolution of the masses. It was a double standard, one for the individuals, and one for progressivism; one for the rich and one for the poor. From the origin of the Main Impersonal Force would come the birth of a Myth (The American Dream) to strengthen the Red, the White, and the Blue, and give a continuing influx of internal Hope for a better tomorrow. Using revolution as an example and allowing progress through industrialization, it would produce or introduce a family of new Hope, allowing subordination-ism, of the Impersonal Forces, dependent and reliant on the existence of the Main Impersonal Force, to guide both the rich and the poor to their destiny.

For the rich it would introduce: Capitalism, and Conservatism, earned through the mastery of Behaviorism, justified through the practice of Darwinism, gained through application of Economic Expansionism, insured through Journalism, and ultimately reaffirmed through Freudianism. For the rich it would produce: Humanism as restitution for quilt, Sexism as symbol of superiority over maternal-ism.

For the poor it would introduce: Patriotism gained through citizenship,(membership) and reinforced by the Main Impersonal Force; to replace the uniqueness of man, gained through a falsified freedom and restricting common man’s free will and choice which was falsely guaranteed through their bible, the constitution; Optimism established by desire and reassured by achievements, and ultimately Consumerism (propaganda) as a reward for progressivism and Materialism as a symbol of acceptance of the religion; it would produce Populism as a voice of hope for the common man’s despair, Narcissism as an explanation to common man’s dilemma, Socialism as an alternative to struggle, Marxism as an artificial retaliation to Capitalism, Alcoholism as an escape from reality; Sexism as a means of gain through despair for submission. The Main Impersonal Force produces a force with no end, infinite. It began with Nationalism but will come to be known as Natal-ism their heritage and future (from the cradle to grave). It will lead the poor through hope and achievements to their ultimate destiny, Capitalism (the temple of the rich). It will lead the rich through expansionism into Imperialism, to convert the world to their religion through propaganda of consumerism. Our destiny has been pre-ordained, that is if we try, if we struggle, if we work hard, but only, if we conform.

In Western Europe, Industrialization was a revolution, created by the rich, the chosen, the rising upper-middle class, the bourgeoisie; it was unplanned, uncalculated. The American Industrialization, on the other hand, differed from the European counterparts, in that, the creators of this Industrialization learned from the mistakes of both the English and the French counterparts. The French Revolution was the out-come of the first attempts of this new religion to conform and convert the masses. The reign of terror that resulted was the consumption of its own creation. The resulting corruption was still fresh in minds of greedy, social elite and the entrepreneurs in the western world. To prevent the slightest threat of repetition of the French example, the American industrialization had to be calculated, predetermined, and thought-out and most of all Controlled. Before the era of Industrialization could be entered, the slaves had to be freed, given hope and token justice. Education for the masses had to be forced, thus, allowing for conditioning of The American Dream through the mandatory school systems and Behaviorism. When Industrialization hit America, the common people had been prepared; they had hope for a better tomorrow; they were willing to work hard to get ahead, to build a better future, if not for themselves, their children.

A laissez-faire Conservatism predominated. Economic Expansion of railroads made it possible. Factories and industries sprung up almost overnight; people moved to the cities. Journalism capitalized with propaganda. Immigrants swarmed into America, seeking The American Dream giving the factories a steady over-abundant supply of fresh cheap-labor, paving the way for what was to still to come. The cities became The Jungle where the name of the game was survival, survival of the fittest, Social Darwinism.

The Impersonal Forces were guided by the rich, the social elite, as they sat back in their easy-chairs, read The Wall Street Journal and made decisions on investment risks, i.e., which common man protecting his materialism with a corporate image appeared most profitable and would gather more souls to be converted.

Buying and selling stock in his religion was his trade now, not slaves, but converters. Giving the magic ingredient, hope to the middle-class was their glory towards converting the common man. The ruthlessness employed in the struggle upward by the rising upper-middle class insured a quick return on their investments.

With Carnegie’s contribution of The Gospel of Wealth, and Spencer’s contribution of the social economic application of Charles Darwin’s theory of Evolution, Social Darwinism, what more could the chosen ask. The off-spring of Calvinism, a step child of the Catholic Church, the chosen ones, the rich, the social elite, need only to keep control. With an influx of the magic ingredient (Hope), the Impersonal Forces, would divert, divide, conquer, and convert the struggling common man; he would deny his own values to survive the Hell of his existence. Proficiency in psychology was the key to manipulation (a natural inherent quality in woman, maternal-ism); the hidden secrets in history are the clue to the existence and goals of Paternalism.

The founders effectively changed the values of man from Oneness using capitalistic theology as basic knowledge and replacing it with Sameness, A concept of Partnership, in marriage, in work, in all endeavors giving man, Materialism, Narcissism, Alcoholism, Sexism, Darwinism, justifying the Paternalism“ of the Gospel of Wealth, the form of slavery that is so nice to society and murderous to the common man in The Jungle in the process. The Psychological knowledge of Behaviorism has helped the founders of Capitalism to shape Nationalism as their Idol through worship of a false religion. The fruit of the labor and the blood, sweat, and tears and suffering of the common man allowed the capitalistic society to flourish. The Jewish German, Sigmund (Sex) Freud, based his concept of psychology on Capitalism, called Freudianism; it so conveniently complimented Capitalism that it would become a temporary substitute for the Love of Man and parol evidence, to Love of Man.


With Blake’s Stroke of a Pen

By Trudy A. Martinez

The first few lines of the novel A Tale Of Two Cities, a fictional historical novel, written by Charles Dickens presents a narrow view of history that sets the atmosphere and the tone of the era in which William Blake aspires. The novel’s plot begins in the year one thousand seven hundred fifty-seven, the year of Blake’s birth.

“It [is] the best of times”

The nobles maintain their sanction status; the church, the Catholic Church, continues to support the corrupt government. The bourgeoisie, the upper-middle-class, prosper, increasing in wealth and position; some of the upper-middle-class use foresight by purchasing titles thus exempting themselves from taxes and the dual standard employed within a society of classes. The Population increases as a result of the accomplishment of industrialization.

“It [is] the worst of times”

The middle class begins to stagnate; the working class and the peasantry are oppressed and left to the mercy of the nobles and the bourgeoisie, the upper-middle-class, who abuses them. Factory workers labor long hours for subsistence wages; the peasantry is like dirt under the feet of the upper classes; their human dignity stripped; they are like animals with no rights; their death means nothing to the upper-class. Stealing a piece of bread or a few pence to survive means imprisonment, torture, and possible death at the whim of an aristocrat. Cities are overcrowded and so are the prisons.

“It [is] the age of wisdom”

The scientific community made discoveries in the 17th century that revolutionizes thought processes; those processes are carried further in the 18th century which sees further achievements in astronomy, chemistry, and biology. As a result, new ideas surface.

“It [is] the season of light”

Reaction to the age of wisdom and foolishness produce the age of reason; then subsequently a new idealism in opposition to materialism and finally humanitarianism and an increase emphasis on reform movements in answer to problems that face society.

“It [is] the season of darkness”

The upper-middle-class on down to the peasantry lost their faith in the system. The population increases along with taxation. Oppression is on the rise, illness, disease, abuse, and death increase dramatically. All hopes of improvement fades.

As hopes fades for the oppressed, William Blake begins to address the issues of the time while at the same maintaining his faith in the Lord. One can only revere such a poet who appears as a rebel in his own time, the era of the romantics. During this era, greed became a virtue (greed is no longer seen as a vice) that leads the upper middle class to the pillars of society through the persecution of the lower classes. It is an age when man is not free to express openly his thoughts or the truth of all matters.

Blake’s courage became a distinct mark upon time when he addresses his concerns for a society gone astray through his articulations in poetry. His mastery of technique may be seen in the poems. He writes of what he hears and of what he sees as if in answer to the scripture of the Holy Bible (Ezekiel 22 verse 2): “Now, thou son of man, wilt thou judge, wilt thou judge the bloody city? Yea, thou shalt shew her all her abominations.” And Blake, a man of God, surely did show the abominations of a bloody city. Blake speaks of a life, of misery, of death, of injustice and of infidelity; he writes in such a manner as to grant the reader a perceptive scene to behold the grievance, to distinguish the injury upon the citizenry, and discern the encroachment power of industrialization. When Blake drafts his weapon, the all-powerful pen, he fights against the despotism of progress.

The despotism of progress appears as a “. . . mark in every face. . . “. With Blake’s execution of words, the “mark” emerges as if an expression of sadness, of pain, of suffering on the faces of everyone on the “chartered streets” of London, the streets where special privileges (sanctioned by government) are granted to business and to the church immunity, immunity from guilt. The immunity from guilt stretches out to encompass “. . . every infant’s cry of fear . . . every voice . . . every ban, and the mind-forged manacles . . .”[Blake hears]. In other words, Blake hears the babies cry of hunger, the fearful cry of not knowing where the next meal will come from or if it will come at all, the fear of imprisonment in an oppression of not only the body but of the soul with the freedom of thought prohibited, chained to the mind, a crime if voiced while the oppressors ignores the situation or looks the other way.

Blake sees the crimes of the church as he hears “…the Chimney-sweeper’s cry”, the cry of innocence, the cry of horror upon becoming lost in the miles of tunnels “Every black’ning church appalls . . . “ Here Blake seems to imply that the church condones the act of sending children into the miles of tunnels to clean the chimneys even though the church knows the children’s innocence may be blackened not only by the soot of the chimney’s but also by the crying agony of the death the tunnels might hold them and that the chimney tunnels might thus become their coffin and the church their pall bearer.

Blake hears “…the hapless Soldier’s sigh” as he appears to envision the mark of the legless man’s weariness, his sorrow, his regret for the blood all soldiers shed for their country, their government; and therefore the Soldier’s sighs “[ran] in blood down Palace walls.”

As the blood ran down the Palace walls, the blood seeps into the streets darkened by the immunity pledge to industrialization through its charter. There Blake hears “…through midnight streets…the youthful Harlot’s curse”. In other words, Blake sees the disease, hunger, and death –the plight of young girls being forced into prostitution merely by the desire to survive the hell of their existence. Blake also sees the curse live on in the cry of the young girl’s offspring “[as the curse blasts] the new-born infant’s tear”.

The infant’s tear cries out with the knowledge of its destiny to Blake; And Blake transfers the infant’s appeal for life on to paper. In doing so, Blake bestows upon others his benefaction of sight, his ability to examine the “…mark on every face” and therefore to detect and distinguish “…every infant’s cry of fear”, the hopelessly of their lives, the birth of the affliction of their death, “…blights with plagues the Marriage hearse.” Blake with the courage of a warrior and as commanded by the Lord with the stroke of a pen shows the city: “all her abominations” and perhaps inspires the

“. . . The Spring of Hope” and helps to prevent “. . . a winter of despair”.

The previous winters had not been pleasant; in fact, they had been quiet rough for the oppressed with their subsistence existence, death, and the injustice within society. Their future did not promise much hope. Blake left very few stones un-turned when he also exposes the virtues of women who give themselves willingly to men in secret only to destroy their purity and innocence in the poem, “The Sick Rose.”

While Dickens brings into focus the attitudes and climate of society by focusing attention on the individuals of each class within the society, Blake shows the City of London all its abominations. Thus the personal attitudes of the individuals are given logic and reason through their level of self-esteem, their suspicions, their beliefs, their mastery, and their behavior and through their association of religion, learning, achievement, and past experience. As a result of the perception of the individuals, the reader’s personal, general, perception of attitudes and behavior of the rich and the poor and the practices and developments within the society are conceived. The literary maneuver of Dickens gives a structure of justice and injustice which in turn defines and distinguishes the good and the evil that confronts the society and William Blake.

Perhaps, the writings of Blake inspire the English under the reign of George III to revitalize its middle-class with the hope of a better future and thus prevent the “topsy-turvy” effect the French experienced. One can only imagine what may have inspired the great poet to express his independent thoughts during a period of time when freedom of thought or speech is not apparent. But Blake seizes the opportunity his quill affords him and speaks out against oppression as he transcribes what he perceives in a fashion that marks his courage forever on the pages of time through the stroke of his pen.

Unworthy of Honor

Unworthy of Honor?

By Trudy A. Martinez

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  • chgofguard011Staring up from the page were the words:  Veteran’s Day–Regular Classes Scheduled.  “Wrong schedule,” I thought.  “I need the Winter Schedule.”  Knowing there was a holiday scheduled and not remembering what holiday it was, I searched for the answer.  “Oh, here it is,” I told myself as my eyes read the bold print:  Martin Luther King Day — Campus Closed.

    “Why,” I asked myself, “is Martin Luther King Day observed while Veteran’s Day is not?”  True, King fought with words for freedom of oppression for one segment of the population.  But it is also true millions of service men, both black and white, fought with their lives to insure freedom for us all.  Why then doesn’t the campus observe their Day as well?  Is the lack of acknowledgement because service men use violence while the educated use words as a method of persuasion?

    If the method of persuasion determines worthiness, the message conveyed says the University does not consider those who fight to ensure freedom with their lives on the same level as an educated man such as Martin Luther; and therefore, the fighting men are not worthy of honor.  The past reiterates this thought; Universities were havens for the affluent to avoid the draft.  The less affluent were excluded from this avenue of escape.  Soldiers returning from war were treated as outcasts.

    Even though the efforts of the press physically acknowledge service men recently returning from military excursions, the message sent remains the same:  You are not worthy of our honor!

    I for one say, “You’re wrong!” 


    That  journal entry was written back in 1994.  Nevertheless, things are the same.  All of  us do not honor those who lay their lives on the line to maintain and preserve our freedom.  Why not?  Do you have the answer?


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    An Intricate Web: An Analysis of William Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily”

    “An Intricate Web”: An Analysis of William Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily”

    By  Trudy A. Martinez 

    In the story “A Rose for Emily” written by William Faulkner, Faulkner establishes a historical morality of a southern heritage, a pattern, intricately woven within the story. The pattern engulfs Emily Grierson, the main character, a descendant of an old, southern, social elite family, who is bred accustom to the best of everything; she demands the rights of her heritage. Emily acts above reproach, above change, determining to maintain her image.

    Faulkner builds on the intricate web through his reference to change that encompasses a southern town and its inhabitants following the Civil War. As progress encroaches upon a once elite route in a small community, the route becomes an intermingling eyesore of decaying mansions and the ugliness of progression within a society.

    The narrator portrays the significance of an illusion of decay and the ugliness of a changing time and of changing values by using the reference to we rather than to I. By resorting to this technique, Faulkner manages to camouflage the accountability and neutralizes the judgment for the putrefaction of the town, its inhabitants, and the abandonment of a once elegant southern heritage.

    The Prospective of William Faulkner on “A Rose for Emily” (Meyer 54-55) acknowledges the judgment has a neutralizing theme when Faulkner answers the question: “.could this story…be…classified as a criticism of the times?” (Meyer 55). Faulkner said, “The writer uses the environment–what he knows…It was not a conflict between the North and South so much as between…God and Satan”(Meyer 55).

    At the end Civil War, the ideology of industrialization forces the south to change and conform. Industrial progression and the freeing of the salves is seen as a means of bettering the majority of the people or at least giving them hope for a better future through the introduction of industrialization. Instead, the tradition, heritage, and values of the typical southerner fade, decays, and gives way to a diabolic aggressive progression.

    Regardless of what happens to the typical southerner, to Emily the War is not over; she fights on; she maintains her heritage; she avoids taxation gracefully, elegantly even. Emily is not going to change! She is above this utter nonsense; “Colonel Sartoris had explained to [her] “. Not”…even grief could…cause a real lady to forget noblesse oblige“.

    Emily holds her head high in the tradition of her heritage until she meets the man of her dreams, Homer Barron; but “he was not a marrying man”. Stubborn, Emily will not relinquish her traditional values to become the talk of the town. She plans and works out a solution to her problem; she sets everything straight in the eye of the gossips, while at the same time, ridding herself of a “Rat”.

    Because she portrays herself well in the old traditional heritage, Emily reaps her “Rose” as she distinguishes her execution of deceit. She relinquished her values for a false image; she gives in to temptation and hides her indiscretion from the town. She accomplishes her deceitful performance with the suppleness of a woman while maintaining her stature in the old southern tradition. Emily joins the status-quo while defrauding everyone into believing she is portraying a member of a southern aristocracy who will not succumb to changes within the society.