13 February 2012

18. Babbitt

Babbitt - Sinclair Lewis

I read this review of Babbitt a long while back and said I would read it. Yes, it took three years, but I got it done.  :-)

Anyway...that review was correct. Babbitt pretty much sums up the problems with societal conformity en-mass. George Babbitt politically thinks exactly what his Republican Senators tell him to think. George Babbitt religiously thinks exactly what his Presbyterian minister tells him to think. George Babbitt socially thinks exactly what his friends in the boosters club tell him to think. He regurgitates all those thoughts throughout his life.

Stuff happens...he takes a walk on the wild side...then he comes back to the comforts of conformity. End of story.

It is a funny book in a way. It made me laugh as George was cramming his thoughts and ideas down other people's throats.

One of my favorite lines, or conversations, or pieces of dialog, or whatever you want to call it...George was talking about his children. His son didn't want to go to college. He wanted to be an auto mechanic. Needless to say, George was less than thrilled. Then he was talking about his daughter, who was into the arts and attended many gatherings for cultural events. George's opinion was that all she wanted to be was "some kind of Socialist agitator". I thought the way he said that was hilarious.

Anyway, Sinclair Lewis is an outstanding writer. His characters are real. I thoroughly enjoyed Babbitt and hope to read Main Street and Arrowsmith some day. If you have not read Babbitt, you should.

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