Ragged Dick

Ragged Dick

Horatio Alger Jr. / Dec 12, 2019

Ragged Dick It is canonical as a cultural text rather than a purely literary one as this Norton Critical Edition reflects An extensive Contexts section includes maps photographs and documents showing how and

  • Title: Ragged Dick
  • Author: Horatio Alger Jr.
  • ISBN: 9780393925890
  • Page: 225
  • Format: Paperback
  • It is canonical as a cultural text, rather than a purely literary one, as this Norton Critical Edition reflects An extensive Contexts section includes maps, photographs, and documents showing how and why Alger used the backdrop of New York City to highlight problems of urban poverty, immigration, and child labor in mid nineteenth century America Criticism is thematicIt is canonical as a cultural text, rather than a purely literary one, as this Norton Critical Edition reflects An extensive Contexts section includes maps, photographs, and documents showing how and why Alger used the backdrop of New York City to highlight problems of urban poverty, immigration, and child labor in mid nineteenth century America Criticism is thematically organized around contemporary reviews and responses, the heated public debate about whether Alger should be available in American public libraries, parodies of and related responses to Alger, and four recent critical essays by Mary Wroth Walsh, Glenn Hendler, Michael Moon, and Hildegard Hoeller.

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      Published :2019-09-07T18:23:14+00:00

    About "Horatio Alger Jr."

      • Horatio Alger Jr.

        Horatio Alger, Jr January 13, 1832 July 18, 1899 was a prolific 19th century American author, most famous for his novels following the adventures of bootblacks, newsboys, peddlers, buskers, and other impoverished children in their rise from humble backgrounds to lives of respectable middle class security and comfort His novels about boys who succeed under the tutelage of older mentors were hugely popular in their day.Born in Chelsea, Massachusetts, the son of a Unitarian minister, Alger entered Harvard University at the age of sixteen Following graduation, he briefly worked in education before touring Europe for almost a year He then entered the Harvard Divinity School, and, in 1864, took a position at a Unitarian church in Brewster, Massachusetts Two years later, he resigned following allegations he had sexual relations with two teenage boys 1 He retired from the ministry and moved to New York City where he formed an association with the Newsboys Lodging House and other agencies offering aid to impoverished children His sympathy for the working boys of the city, coupled with the moral values learned at home, were the basis of his many juvenile rags to riches novels illustrating how down and out boys might be able to achieve the American Dream of wealth and success through hard work, courage, determination, and concern for others This widely held view involves Alger s characters achieving extreme wealth and the subsequent remediation of their old ghosts Alger is noted as a significant figure in the history of American cultural and social ideals He died in 1899.The first full length Alger biography was commissioned in 1927 and published in 1928, and along with many others that borrowed from it later proved to be heavily fictionalized parodies perpetuating hoaxes and made up anecdotes that would resemble the tell all scandal biographies of the time 2 Other biographies followed, sometimes citing the 1928 hoax as fact In the last decades of the twentieth century a few reliable biographies were published that attempt to correct the errors and fictionalizations of the past.For information, please see answers topic horatio


    1. This is a story of a 14-year-old boot-black finding a way to rise to a better life (though still way below what his end goal must be, but it's not part of this book - the next book "Fame And Fortune" has that, though reading it at Project Gutenberg is to me preferable to owning it). It's set around the time when Central Park is still not quite finished, which points us to the time point of circa 1873ish. The book's covers the time of about a year.Ragged Dick manages to progress partly because of [...]

    2. I actually read this when I was in elementary school, and I love it even now! It's funny, engaging, and inspiring, as it follows the story of Dick Hunter from his position as a lowly bootblack to an honorable member of society. One of my favorite childhood stories :)

    3. Horatio Alger was the inventor, or at least the popularizer, of the "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" ethos in America. I heard his name many times growing up, but no one reads his books anymore. This is partly because they're not very good: "There is no doubt that what he wrote was bilge, but it was inspired," says one critic* who's being as nice as he can.Another reason is that his books are wicked ephebophilic. They all feature a poor but good-hearted teenage boy who betters his lot under [...]

    4. Horatio Alger, Jr.'s style is rather like G. A. Henty's in that, once you’ve read three or four of his novels, you’ve practically read all of them because he repeats the same plots over and over. But those first four stories are quite enjoyable. =)The Story.Ragged Dick’s life as a bootblack is straightforward. He scrambles himself up real early each mornin’ – ‘cause that’s when the best customers is up and movin’ – and racks up some business. Then, for the rest of the day, he s [...]

    5. I was looking for a bedtime audio book and this one came up on the Librivox site. "A Horatio Alger rags-to-riches story" is so often referenced in our culture and language that I thought I really should find out firsthand what they were like, and picked this one. It's the first in a series, and probably the best, judging from the comments of other readers. It was in later works that the plotlines became repetitive and stale - and Alger was very prolific.Frankly, I enjoyed the book, quite a bit. [...]

    6. "Ragged Dick"; or," Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks" is a novel by Horatio Alger, Jr. It was first serialized in "The Student and Schoolmate" in 1867, and released as a full length novel in May 1868. It was the first volume in the six volume Ragged Dick Series, and became Alger's all-time bestseller. When I first read this I of course, had to find out what "The Student and Schoolmate" was and here it is:"The Student and Schoolmate" was a 19th-century monthly American children's maga [...]

    7. This was not nearly as satisfying a read as four stars suggests. We have our protagonist, Dick Hunter who behaves well and fortune smiles upon him. He doesn't become a savvy businessman, instead people give him opportunities and he betters himself.I wish it was longer but I understand there is a second novel to follow up on his adventures. I'm too tired to suggest any homoerotic undertones. Perhaps the general lack of women is due to the perspective of masculine society at the time? Be nice to o [...]

    8. Sort of hilariously preachy! Listen, kids, if you just work hard and work hard some more, your life will be totally wonderful! Presumably this book is famous more for its rags-to-riches propagandist importance to Being A Good American rather than for its awesome writing. But I still thought it was a pretty fast and not-annoying read, as long as I was willing to roll my eyes at the more didactic passages. Also, I apparently forgot to take off my slash goggles while reading, because the Force was [...]

    9. What I really liked about this book was the description of life in NY city in the late 1800s. The actual story is a bit different from the Horatio Alger mythology of going from rags to riches, it's more like going from crushing poverty to middle class. While our plucky little protagonist Ragged Dick does have a sense of integrity, is personable, and is quite the hard-worker, but he also relies on good fortune for opportunities that he wouldn't otherwise be offered. It is quite cliched, but it is [...]

    10. Proto-YA, orphan story, rags to riches, and quite a hoot. I also now really really want some beefsteak and coffee.Read for YABC May 2013

    11. This book was delightful in every way. It is a short, quick read, but I so quickly became attached to Dick and deeply invested in his life. It is such a feel-good, happy story and I loved every second of it. I was assigned it as part of American Literature and this is by far one of the top assigned books I've ever enjoyed. I recommend it to absolutely everyone because it is so lovely and a genuine pick-me-up.

    12. An amazing story about a boy named Ragged Dick, who, through respect and honesty, rises up from the life of a boot-black, to that of an educated man. It was interesting to read about how Dick managed to live on New York's streets, while keeping his dreams alive of being a respectable man. I really enjoyed reading about Dick's progress, and loved the encounters he had along the way. An overall enjoyable read!

    13. RAGGED DICK. (1867). Horatio Alger. ***. Most of us know about or have heard of Alger. It’s a common expression: “Like a Horatio Alger story.” It typically refers to a phenomenal success story, or one that involves a “rags-to-riches” occasion. I’ve never read any of Alger’s books, because I’ve always heard that they were so bad, but coming across one at a library sale I managed to part with $1 for the experience. The book actually contained two of Alger’s novels, both this one [...]

    14. 3.5This takes a lot of suspension-of-belief but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I ended up rooting for Dick Hunter.

    15. This turn of the century formula for righteous living is charming. Dick is a homeless child who has taken care of himself as long as he can remember. He is very street smart. But he aches to be rich and refined and when he meets a younger version of himself he stives to protect him. Through good deeds he meets his "salvation" and is provided with a job and gets off the streets. Alger Jr. wrote a series followning Dick through his exploits.

    16. I picked up this book at a second-hand book store after coming across the title in an audio series ‘Great American Bestsellers: The Books That Shaped America’. A hundred and fifty-three pages; enjoyed reading it in one sitting. Although not so extraordinary, I found the main character/protagonist likable, full of integrity and possessing characteristics that we all strive for. Published in 1867, 150 years ago, Ragged Dick is Horatio Alger’s first of a series of books in juvenile literature [...]

    17. This book was assigned to me for a history class, and it was probably the best assigned reading I've ever had. The story was easy to read and very fast paced. Dick was charismatic,honest, and funny. You rooted for him and could see the best parts of yourself in him. His kindness was astounding yet never unbearable. It was definitely a story where positive actions and hard work directly enhanced the character's life. It was an accurate depiction of the "American Dream" and I can see the allure of [...]

    18. Follow the events of Heratio Alger's young bootblack hero on his way to grow up wealthy and respectable. This is a classic rags-to-riches American-dream pushing story intended to teach young boys discipline and integrity. It is an idealistic and simplified view of what it takes to become successful in the America. That aside, it is well written, and Dick's wit, jokes, and earnest nature make him an entertaining character to read about.

    19. I loved this book. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Dick was a hustler. The story was cool. It wasn't as exciting as some other, more modern books are, but I liked the chill pace. This is the only one of Alger's books that was available at my library. Wish there were more because I dug it.

    20. Dated and overly moralizing, but surprisingly good with an interesting story. I found it inspiring and motivating to do better in life by using my time better and sacrificing now for more opportunity later.

    21. Not my type of thing. It was written a looooonnnnngggg time ago, and was preachy about how it is wrong to steal, cheat, ect. How hard work will make you a better person. I don't think I was his target audience anyway.

    22. A marvelous classic that will keep your hopes high and your heart warm, while you fall in love with our hero Dick Hunter.

    23. CATEGORY SATISFIED: PRE-1920This book feels incredibly Victorian (which makes sense because it was published serially starting in 1868). This made it entertaining, but incredibly predictable. It is the classic "rags to riches" story. the main character, ragged Dick, grows up as a shoe shiner on the street, but when he meets a rich man and his nephew, he decides to turn his life around and become "'spectable." Through hard work and by having an honest character Dick is eventually able to find a j [...]

    24. What to rate this? Three stars? Four stars? Decent story most of the way through, but that ending. O.o Just no.

    25. A real cute read, especially now that I know it's a children's tale. It reads quick and easy that way with a fair dose of comedy that works so many decades removed from its original publication. Ragged Dick is a fine character with a noble cause, and although taken as a guide or propaganda piece this book really falls apart, I enjoyed reading it through the lens of a video game playthrough: the world is fleshed out by missing elements if you look too hard, the difficulty is scaleable and full of [...]

    26. Question 15: (the whole book) Ragged Dick is the name of a poor boy that his parents are dead when he was seven years old. He shines shoes to earn money for his living. He sleeps in boxes every night. He had a frank, straightforward manner that made him appealing. He always read to joke with customers. One day, he was fortunate enough to get four customers in the morning. Now, he began to think about breakfast with Johnny Nolan who is a boy of fourteen years old like Ragged Dick, a bootblack. In [...]

    27. Loved the writing style and loved the characters (especially Ragged Dick). Definitely want to read the rest of the series now!

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