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Sinclair, Upton (Beall).

Sinclair, Upton [Beall]

(1878 - 1968) American writer of novels and nonfiction. Sinclair, a remarkably prolific author, with over eighty books to his credit, is known for his steady espousal of socialism and his concern with social and political problems. His best - known book, The Jungle, created a sensation when published; it shocked President Theodore Roosevelt, who invited Sinclair to the White House, and influenced the passing of the Pure Food and Drug Act (1906).

Sinclair used his earnings from The Jungle to found the cooperative Helicon Home Colony, near Englewood, New Jersey. The project, in which Sinclair Lewis participated briefly, was abandoned after a mysterious fire in 1907. In 1915 Sinclair moved to California. In 1934 he was the Democratic candidate for governor of the state, running on the famous EPIC (End Poverty in California) platform; after an acrimonious campaign, he was narrowly defeated.

Meanwhile, Sinclair continued to write steadily. Among his later novels are King Coal (1917), Oil! (1927), and Boston (1928), the latter two based respectively on the Teapot Dome scandal and the Sacco - Vanzetti case.

His nonfiction works include The Brass Check (1919), a highly critical treatise on journalism, based on his own experiences, and American Outpost: A Book of Reminiscences (1932). His Autobiography appeared in 1962.

With the rise of Fascism and Communism in Europe, Sinclair became more interested in foreign affairs. He wrote a long series of popular novels, beginning with World's End (1940), which deal with Lanny Budd, scion of a wealthy family, who takes it upon himself to right the world's wrongs and becomes a prominent figure in international politics and intrigue.

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Publication:Benet's Reader's Encyclopedia, 3rd ed.
Article Type:Reference Source
Date:Jan 1, 1987
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