Analysis Of The Book Of The Dead By Muriel Rukeyser Essay

Analysis Of The Book Of The Dead By Muriel Rukeyser Essay

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“The Book of the Dead” by Muriel Rukeyser is a great example of Mike Gold’s definition of proletarian literature for many reasons. It also has a few characteristics that differ from Gold’s definition. “The Book of the Dead” is a very long poem describing the Hawks Nest Tunnel disaster that killed thousands of workers in the early twentieth century and their endeavor to seek justice. There are three reasons why this work is an accurate representation of Gold’s proletarian literature. Those reasons are: it is about the worker, relatable to real life, and technical and factual.
One of Gold’s standards is that proletarian literature be about the worker. “The Book of the Dead” is about the horrible working conditions that miners had to endure in the thirties and their journey to justice . Rukeyser wrote, “The contractors/ knowing pure silica/ 30 years experience/ must have known danger for every man/ neglected to provide the workmen with any safety device….” (STATEMENT: PHILIPPA ALLEN). The bosses of the company new that the silica was dangerous for the workers and still failed to provi...

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