The book showed the harsh realities of the packinghouses in Chicago and the development of industrialization. I thought the book was interesting until the last few chapters which was a very long account of capitalism vs. socialism. I understood that the author needed to present his point of view but was rather difficult to stick with. Each paragraph could have been analyzed with how things were then and actually how they are today since it seems that the trend now seems to be toward socialism. Absolutely the discussion between capitalism and socialism is relavent today.