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Experiences And Adventures As A Hoboe

1006 words - 4 pages

In the novel, The Road by Jack London, London writes about his experiences and adventures as one of the hoboes. London shows throughout the book about how the American system is unjust to the hoboes. One of the examples is when London is in the courthouse in Niagara Falls. Another example of London's view on the American system is when London gets to be a hall-man in the jail cell. In the chapter "Hoboes that Pass in the Night," London describes a scene in the bar where he was treated badly. When London gets to New England, he finds out that the police are after the hoboes.In the chapter titled "Pinched," London writes about his experience through the courthouse in Niagara Falls. He describes the courthouse where there were no citizens to see the how the justice was served. He explains that there were sixteen hoboes waiting for their conviction. The judge had come into the room, listening to the bailiff saying what each had been accused of. All of them were convicted of vagrancy. The judge had only asked one hobo as to why he committed this crime. The hobo replied by talking about his life-story, and how he was fired from his job. The judge gave him 60 days, 30 days more than any other hobo for "quitting," his job. London describes this scene with humor, but later on in the chapter, he writes:What crime had I committed against the good citizens of Niagara Falls that all thisvengeance should be wreaked upon me? I had not even violated their "sleeping-out"ordinance. I had slept outside their jurisdiction, in the country that night. I had not evenbegged for a meal, or battered for a "light piece" on their streets. All that I had done wasto walk along their sidewalk and gaze at their picayune waterfall. And what crime wasthere in that? Technically I was guilty of no misdemeanor. All right, I'd show them whenI got out (95-6).This passage implies that he is mad at the American system. This passage shows the reader that he is aggravated because, in his mind, he did nothing wrong. He wants to know why he is put in the jail for just hanging around the Niagara Falls.London gets to be a hall-man in the jail cell in the chapter titled "The Pen." London has a connection in the jail cell, so he uses it to become a hall-man. He describes the cell as very cramped in with half of a thousand prisoners in his hall. London writes that he had to keep the order in the cells, even if it meant to beat the prisoners.Thirteen against five hundred, and we ruled by fear. We could not permit the slightestinfraction of rules, the slightest insolence. If we did, we were lost. Our own rule was tohit a man as soon as he opened his mouth- hit him hard, hit him with anything. A broomhandle, end-on, in the face, had a very sobering effect. (107)He writes about how...

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