Muckrakers and Political Reforms

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How did Upton Sinclair "muckrake" for social reform?

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The "muckrakers" were a group of investigative journalists who dedicated themselves to uncovering social ills during the late 19th and early 20th centuries in the US.

They were give their name by Theodore Roosevelt, who meant it pejoratively.  The name refers to people who rake out the soiled straw and bedding from a horse's stall.

Sinclair is best known for his book "The Jungle," in which he describes (in a fictional account that was closely based on the truth) conditions in the meatpacking industry of Chicago.  He documents poor working conditions and really disgusting things that were done to meat that later became food.

The work of Sinclair and other muckrakers helped lead to many reform laws passed during the Progressive Era.

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