Read McTeague: A Story of San Francisco: An Authoritative Text, Backgrounds and Sources, Criticism by Frank Norris Free Online
Book Title: McTeague: A Story of San Francisco: An Authoritative Text, Backgrounds and Sources, Criticism|
The author of the book: Frank Norris
ISBN 13: 9780393091366
Format files: PDF, Epub, DOCx, TXT
The size of the: 743 KB
Edition: W. W. Norton & Company
Date of issue: January 1st 1978
Reader ratings: 5.7
Loaded: 139 times
Read full description of the books McTeague: A Story of San Francisco: An Authoritative Text, Backgrounds and Sources, Criticism:
In the 1890's, in San Francisco, (now finally at peace ) on busy Polk Street, with cable cars, continuously moving up and down the thoroughfare , not the most fashionable lane, though, McTeague, an unlicensed dentist, too dumb to know he needs it, practices his profession, learned from a quack in a filthy mining camp, pulling teeth with his bare hands, big and strong as an ox, and as smart as one too, his clients are clerks, shop girls and vendors, the working poor, of the area, the rich people who live a couple of blocks away, go to another , more able, and with a certificate...McTeague, no other name is given, has just one friend, Marcus Schouler, an ambitious , young man, like the dentist, employed by a veterinarian, with a little clinic, nearby, ( he does have a license) shy, old Grannis, who loves the retired dressmaker, Miss Baker, (these people all live in the same apartment building) the aged sweethearts, have adjoining rooms, in fact, but will not speak to each other, only like to listen to the sounds, coming through the walls and opened doors, she's even more bashful than he. When Marcus brings his cousin, small , charming, almost beautiful , but with pretty hair, Trina Sieppe, from an immigrant German family, to fix her teeth, the quack falls in love, complications, though, so does his only friend. McTeague proposes to Trina, 20, in his tiny room, also used as an dental office, and the frightened girl runs away, but does come back. Later telling his friend , the amazed Mr. Shouler, who magnanimously lets him take the woman he wanted to marry, a real pal, but will regret always his hasty decision...Trina, wins $5,000, in an illegal lottery, that she reluctantly bought a ticket , from the pushy seller, for a dollar, to the chagrin of Marcus. After the odd couple's marriage, her family moves to Los Angeles, alone, she invest her money with a rich uncle, becomes a miser, taking out the gold coins, to adore, and feel, that she has left, or saved, every day, just to look at. This causes great irritation , you can imagine, to her husband, they live so cheaply, almost like beggars. Domestic violence, ensues, McTeague, leaves and steals the hidden money...This not quite respectful novel, was condemned by contemporary reviewers for its coarseness, vulgarity and killings, in 1899, very unsettling, even by modern standards, if there are any, it is not a pleasant read, a minor American classic, that shows the evils ways some people act, in the face of dire poverty...Yet a gripping story, with a terrific finale, of a man who will not be stopped, his feeble mind, tells him what to pursue, anything he wants, is his ...all he has to do is grasp it, in his powerful hands.
Read information about the authorBenjamin Franklin Norris, Jr. was an American novelist, during the Progressive Era, writing predominantly in the naturalist genre. His notable works include McTeague (1899), The Octopus: A California Story (1901), and The Pit (1903). Although he did not openly support socialism as a political system, his work nevertheless evinces a socialist mentality and influenced socialist/progressive writers such as Upton Sinclair. Like many of his contemporaries, he was profoundly influenced by the advent of Darwinism, and Thomas Henry Huxley's philosophical defense of it. Norris was particularly influenced by an optimistic strand of Darwinist philosophy taught by Joseph LeConte, whom Norris studied under while at the University of California, Berkeley. Through many of his novels, notably McTeague, runs a preoccupation with the notion of the civilized man overcoming the inner "brute," his animalistic tendencies. His peculiar, and often confused, brand of Social Darwinism also bears the influence of the early criminologist Cesare Lombroso and the French naturalist Emile Zola.
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