"COMES NOW THE TIME TO MAKE A WORLD" (JACK LONDON): FIRST EDITION OF UPTON SINCLAIR'S MONUMENTAL ANTHOLOGY, CRY FOR JUSTICE, 1915, INSCRIBED IN 1917 BY SOCIALIST PARTY LEADER CORA WILSON
SINCLAIR, Upton, editor. The Cry for Justice. An Anthology of the Literature of Social Protest. Philadelphia: John C. Winston, 1915. Thick octavo, original gilt-stamped red cloth. $500.
First edition of Sinclair's massive collection of "5,000 years of writings on the working man," from Jefferson to Marx, Lucretius to Kropotkin, Dante to Emma Goldman, published with America poised to enter WWI—“a socialist vision for a more humane world,” this distinctive copy with a contemporary inscription by Socialist Party leader Cora Wilson.
To Jack London, Sinclair's massive collection of Socialist-themed and radical writings, was a "humanist Holy Book… a monument of the ages… We know how gods are made. Comes now the time to make a world." Along with London's introduction and excerpts from his select works, Cry for Justice contains works by Emma Goldman, Eugene Debs, Sylvia Pankhurst, Alexander Berkman and others "who were a potent political force on the eve of WWI." Compiled and edited by Sinclair, the volume also features works from across time and across the globe—from Jefferson to Marx, Dante to W.E.B. Du Bois, Tolstoy to Zola, Keats to Twain, Euripides to Thoreau, Shakespeare to Strindberg, Lucretius to Kropotkin, and hundreds more." Shortly after publication, John Reed told Sinclair that Cry for Justice "has made more radicals than anything I ever heard." Today, Cry for Justice stands out as both an "evocation of a lost America… [and] a socialist vision for a more humane world" (Hedges in Bookforum). First edition, first printing: with no statement of edition or printings. With photographic frontispiece and over 30 full-page black-and-white illustrations. BAL 11961. This memorable copy contains a contemporary bookplate by labor leader Hans Lighterman, and an inscription by Cora P. Wilson, a prominent Socialist Party member who, in 1917, delivered a moving oration at a memorial service for Joe Hill, the legendary IWW poet and songwriter who was executed by firing squad in 1915 and was later immortalized with the 1936 song, I Dreamed I Saw Joe Hill Last Night. Wilson's inscription, below Lighterman's bookplate, reads: "Presented by Comrade Lighterman to me Feb. 18, 1917. Cora P. Wilson."
Interior exceptionally fresh with inner paper hinges starting but very strong, scant edge-wear to bright gilt-stamped cloth. A handsome about-fine copy.