shopsickness

kahroba

Senior Member
Persian
Dear all
What’s your interpretation for “shopsickness” in the following context from “ManhattanTransfer” by Dos Passos?
Time: 1910s
A man is shouting from a soapbox at Second Avenue and Houston:
” …These fellers, men.. . wageslaves like I was… are sitting on your chest … they’re taking the food outen your mouths. Where’s all the pretty girls I used to see walkin up and down the bullevard? Look for em in the uptown cabarets… They build their Plaza Hotels and their millionair’s clubs and their million dollar theayaters and what do they leave us? … They leave us shopsickness an the rickets and a lot of dirty streets full of garbage cans… “

 
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  • PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    "They leave us shopsickness an' the rickets and a lot of dirty streets full of garbage cans… “ shopsickness is what we would now call "occupational illness" - illness caused by poor conditions in the workplace. Labour conditions in 1910 were often horrific by today's standards.
     
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