Sister Carrie Author:Theodore Dreiser Sister Carrie is an epic of city life, of transient idealists besieged by industrialism and its anonymity. It specifically treats of two people, at once attracted and repelled by their vastly different backgrounds, who, in the course of involvement, are led into wholly unexpected areas of experience. Provincial and naive, Carrie becomes i... more »nvolved with Hurstwood, a respectable Chicago tavern manager twice her age, who alienates himself from his family. Out of despair he resorts to theft, is compelled to flee, and cannot obtain employment. Carrie, in turn, becomes a chorus girl and later, under the dubious glow of her fame as an actress, their tragedy crystallizes. Theodore Dreiser makes major symbolic use of nineteenth-century urban conventions -- in which New York and Chicago are themselves likened to twin malignant deities. H.L. Mencken wrote of this foremost naturalistic novel, "Its outstanding merit is its simplicity, its unaffected seriousness and fervour ..." Ford Madox Ford observed: "...in my mind, the idea of Sister Carrie [exists] as a goldenish spot in the weariness of the world."