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MonkeyNotes-Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
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Notes

This chapter describes Carol's efforts to settle down to the dull life in Gopher Prairie. It also describes the efforts of the citizens to transform Gopher Prairie into a big industrial city. Mr. Blausser, a vociferous speculator in land impresses the people of the town so much that he is selected to lead the campaign to make Gopher Prairie prosperous.

Carol goes about silently doing whatever she can do. She is sympathetic and humane in the way she nurses Mrs. Perry and in the way she tries to get a job for Mr. Perry so that he would not become a destitute. It also describes the touching love of a husband for his wife. After Mrs. Perry's death, Champ Perry sits often staring into the vacant space. He goes to the cemetery and tries to cover his wife's grave with his hands as if to protect her. All the important people of Gopher Prairie forget the Perrys conveniently.

The return of Major Raymie attracts attention for some time. He towers above the rest of the people for a while. But soon his glory is also taken for granted and he becomes from Major to Maje. But the boastful Blausser is made much of. The town, which did not care to listen to Carol when she said it needed to be changed, is now ready to change itself. It believes every word of the humbug when he says that he has seen everything in London and Rome and that Gopher Prairie is as good as any of the European cities. When Blausser roars that Gopher Prairie is the pride of Minnesota, the people reorganize the band and get a professional coach to train the baseball team.


When Blausser tries to paw Carol, she fears that he might have heard the gossip about Erik and her. She reads with amazement the eulogy about Gopher Prairie - that its lakes are world famous, the residents are pictures of dignity and culture and that its schools and library are celebrated throughout the state. She never gives any importance to the hustler when he came nor does she regret when he fails after one year. Carol is not against progress. But she is against the kind of industrial progress that the people of Gopher Prairie aim at. According to her, such progress robs the people of their lands and the prairie of its natural charm.

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MonkeyNotes-Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
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