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In the Babbitt Sinclair Lewis is critical of the American lifestyle and society in a subtler way, he doesn’t necessarily write in the story his thoughts on the society of the time, but you are able to really see and picture his critic in various places throughout the story.
One of the first places that I saw a sort of judgmental tone in the writing was at the beginning in chapter one, where he wrote, “But the Babbitt whose god was Modern Appliances was not pleased. ”. From this statement, I was able to pick up on a sort of mocking tone and shows how he felt that the people where beginning to change, that their standards had changed, as well as showing that the society of the people in the 1920s basically worshiping the new technology that is being produced during that time.
He also hints to this at the beginning of Chapter 3 when he writes. “…as to most prosperous citizens of Zenith, his motor car was poetry and tragedy, love and heroism. ”, he is able to express his thoughts on how he felt that more and more middle and upper-class citizens were becoming more materialistic and they no longer cared about real things they put their focus on the new technologies of the time and found a way to make that the center of attention in their lives.
Sinclair Lewis was also able to show how the social class was a big thing in the 1920 and you can see this idea clearly in the way that Babbitt treats and sees his neighbors. He sees Mr. Samuel as less because of the way that they lived their life, they lived their life with more freedom and it seems that they are not as uptight or strict and he sees them as sort of crazy people that don’t have their life together. While on the other hand, the other neighbor Mr. Littlefield he sort of sees his wealth and high education as what he always had inspired to be, and he holds Mr. Littlefield at a higher standard and makes him seem like the perfect example of success. It also shows what Babbitt expects his life to be instead of the life that he had, he sees his life that he has at the time as unsatisfactory and is never satisfied with what is in his life at the time.
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