"The term muckraker most associated with a group of American "
The term muckraker most associated with a group of American investigative reporters, novelists and critics from the late 1800s to early 1900s, who investigated and exposed societal issues such as conditions in slums and prisons, factories, insane asylums (as they were called at the time), sweatshops, mines, child labor and unsanitary conditions in food processing plants. Muckrakers often wrote about impoverished people and took aim at the established institutions of society, sometimes in a sensationalist and tabloid manner. (See History of American newspapers for Muckrakers in the daily press). Muckrakers were often accused of being socialists or communists. In the early 1900s, muckrakers shed light on such issues by writing books and articles for popular magazines and newspapers such as Cosmopolitan, The Independent, and McClure's. The term muckraker now also applies to contemporary persons who follow in the tradition of that period, and now covers topics such as fraudulent claims by manufacturers of patent medicines, modern-day slavery, child prostitution, child pornography, and drug trafficking. Although the term muckraking might appear to have a negative connotation to it, muckrakers have often served the public interest by uncovering crime, corruption, waste, fraud and abuse in both the public and private sectors. An example of a contemporary muckraker work is Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed (1965) and one of the more well known from the early period is Upton Sinclair's The Jungle, (1906) which, respectively, led to reforms in automotive manufacturing and meat packing in the United States. Some of the most famous of the early muckrakers are Ida Tarbell, Lincoln Steffens, and Ray Stannard Baker. The rise of muckraking in the late 19th and early 20th centuries corresponded with the advent of Progressivism yet, while temporally correlated, the two are not intrinsically linked. President Theodore Roosevelt is credited with originating the term 'muckraker.' During a speech in 1906 he likened the muckrakers to the Man with the Muckrake, a character in John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress (1678). While Roosevelt apparently disliked what he saw as a certain abundance of pessimism of muckraking's practitioners, his speech strongly advocated for the paintings of the muckrakers, as seen in his Muckrake Speech of 1906: "There are, in the body politic, economic and social, many and grave evils, and there is urgent necessity for the sternest war upon them. There should be relentless exposure of and attack upon every evil man whether politician or business man, every evil practice, whether in politics, in business, or in social life. I hail as a benefactor every writer or speaker, every man who, on the platform, or in book, magazine, or newspaper, with merciless severity makes such attack, provided always that he in his turn remembers that the attack is of use only if it is absolutely truthful." List of muckrakers and their works * Samuel Hopkins Adams (1871–1958) — The Great American Fraud, exposed false claims about patent medicines * Ray Stannard Baker (1870–1946) — of McClure's Magazine & American Magazine * Cecil Chesterton (1879-1918) - of The New Witness and the 1912 Marconi scandal in Britain * Claud Cockburn (1904-1981) - In Time of Trouble (1956), A Discord of Trumpets * Burton J. Hendrick (1870–1949) — "The Story of Life Insurance" May - November 1906 McClure's Magazine * Helen Hunt Jackson (1831–1885) — A Century of Dishonor, U.S. policy regarding American Indians * Frances Kellor (1873-1952) — Studied chronic unemployment in her book Out of Work (1904) * Thomas W. Lawson (1857-1924) Frenzied Finance (1906) on Amalgamated Copper stock scandal * Henry Demarest Lloyd (1852-1920) - Wealth Against Commonwealth, exposed the corruption within the Standard Oil Company * Nellie Bly (1864 – 1922) Ten Days in a Mad-House * Jessica Mitford (1917–1996) — author of The American Way of Death (US Funeral Industry) and Making of a Muckraker (collection on various topics including writing schools and prisons) * Frank Norris (1870 -1902) The Octopus * Fremont Older (1856 - 1935) San Francisco corruption and the case of Tom Mooney * Westbrook Pegler (1894–1969) — exposed crime in labor unions in 1940s * Jacob Riis (1849-1914) - How the Other Half Lives, the slums * Charles Edward Russell (1860–1941) — investigated Beef Trust, Georgia's prison * George Seldes (1890–1995) — Freedom of the Press (1935) and Lords of the Press (1938), blacklisted during the 1950s period of McCarthyism * Upton Sinclair (1878–1968) — The Jungle (1906), U.S. meat-packing industry, and the books in the "Dead Hand" series that critique the institutions (journalism, education, etc.) that could but did not prevent these abuses. * John Spargo, (1876–1966) — American reformer and author, Bitter Cry of Children (child labor)