The Jungle

The Jungle Chp. XXII

How does Jurgis handle Antanas's death?

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Jurgis takes the news of Antanas’s death “in a peculiar way.” Instead of screaming or erupting in anger, he goes up to the loft where Elzbieta and Marija are mourning. He asks if the boy is really dead, and they confirm it. Jurgis then leaves the loft and walks out of the apartment flat. Instead of going straight to the saloon, however, he simply walks. He gets to the train yard and a strange thought overtakes him. He sneaks past the train keeper’s shed and jumps on a moving freight car that takes him out of the city and into the country.

Jurgis decides now that he will leave the slavery of the city and become free. He decides, “This was no world for women and children, and the sooner they got out of it the better for them.” He decides that he is now going to fight for his life, fight for himself.