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  • Book Review: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

My heart goes out to our island friends and neighbors who are now suffering the wrath of IRMA.

Why Was The Grapes of Wrath Banned

John Steinbeck: “The Grapes of Wrath”

28/02/1997 · Research Paper, Essay on the grapes of wrath ..
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In addition, Tom lives in fear of being discovered as a murderer. The only bright spot in a bleak ending to the novel is Tom Joad’s new insight about life. He becomes aware that he has to be concerned not only for his own family's welfare, but also for the welfare of all families. It is only through a united effort that the migrant workers can rise above their extremely low level of poverty. Ma, the pillar of strength, who has cared mainly for her own family, also embraces this philosophy, and Rose of Sharon is seen nursing a dying man in the last scene of the novel. These are also small signs of hope.


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The novel outwardly ends in tragedy. The Joads, like all the migrant workers, are continually plagued and threatened from the start of their journey to California. Their lives progressively deteriorate until the novel's ending when the family is considerably reduced in number, and Rose of Sharon's stillborn child is seen floating downstream. They have no money or no food for the winter, and have no idea how they will make it. Tom Joad, the protagonist, fully shares in the family’s suffering from intense poverty.

 

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In chapter twenty-five Steinbeck describes the scientific skill, which results in abundant crops, which are then wasted. In chapter twenty-six the Joads have to leave Weedpatch as they have run out of money, as well as food and are without any work. They find work picking peaches at the Hooper ranch. Here Tom meets Casy who tells him that the Joads are breaking the strike to demand higher wages. Deputies disrupt their meeting, and Casy is killed in a Christ-like manner. Tom kills Casy's murderer and is recognizably wounded. Ma hides him in a cave of mattresses, and the family leaves the camp to protect him. Chapter twenty-seven describes the work of cotton picking. In chapter twenty-eight the family finds work picking cotton, and Tom hides in a nearby cave. Ruthie reveals to a big girl that her brother, who has killed two men, is hiding nearby. Tom tells Ma about his plans to translate Casy's ideas into action. Chapter twenty-nine depicts the migrants' despair during the long wet season when there is no work. In the final chapter the rains flood the boxcar camp where the Joads have been living while picking cotton. The Joads and the other families build an embankment out of mud to prevent the water from flooding them. A fallen tree breaks the embankment and water floods the camp. Rose of Sharon gives birth to a stillborn child. Ma insists that the family find a dry shelter. Al stays back with Agnes Wainwright. The Joads find a barn on high ground in which to shelter. They find a boy and a starving man whom Rose of Sharon nourishes with the milk intended for her baby.


The Grapes of Wrath: SHORT SUMMARY / SYNOPSIS / …
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Chapter twelve depicts the movement of the migrants on Highway 66 as they travel westwards to California. In Chapter thirteen, the Joads are seen traveling on Route 66 and spending the first night of their journey. Along the way, Grampa dies of a stroke and is buried by the roadside. Tom and Al repair the Wilsons' car, and the two families agree to travel together. Chapter fourteen outlines the potentiality for social change inherent in the migrants' poignant situation. The next chapter focuses on roadside cafes and truck drivers. In chapter sixteen the Wilsons' car breaks down again, and Al and Tom repair it after buying the spare part cheaply from a one-eyed wrecking yard assistant who hates his boss. At the roadside camp, the Joads learn of the deplorable working conditions and the scarcity of work available in California from a man who is returning home after watching his wife and kids die from starvation. Chapter seventeen describes the roadside camps established every night by the migrants and the development of communal rules. In chapter eighteen, the Joads cross Arizona and reach the Colorado River. Noah leaves the family after a baptismal bath in the river. The Wilsons also discontinue their journey because Sairy is too ill to travel any further. Thus, the Joads cross the dreaded Mojave Desert alone. During the crossing, Granma dies; but Ma does not reveal her death to anybody because she wants the family to get across safely.


The Grapes of Wrath Summary | GradeSaver

is the story of the experiences of the Joad family from the time of their eviction from a farm near Sallisaw, Oklahoma to their first winter in California. The novel has little plot in the ordinary sense. It has thirty chapters, fourteen of which deal with the Joad story. The other sixteen chapters, called interchapters, are not part of the narrative about the Joads. They are, instead, essays dealing with the larger significance of the situation in which the Joads find themselves. These chapters utilize the material that Steinbeck had found in his visits to the migrant camps and his observations of the general situation of drought and depression.

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Poverty is the antagonist of Tom Joad and all migrant workers. Poverty throws people into an intense relationship with nature and its contingencies. Steinbeck, a naturalist, believed that people were the helpless victims of an indifferent environment. The Oklahoma land companies and the Californian landowners are the forces that inflict the poverty in the context of the novel.

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Tom Joad, as a representative of all migrant workers, is the protagonist of the novel. He is the rootless man, the individual who must learn responsibility for what capitalism has done to people and to the earth. Along with Tom, the Joads and the other migrants are sent on the road on a quest to rethink their relationship with both humanity and the land itself. This process has been called "education of the heart." By the end of the novel, Tom relinquishes his self-absorption and embraces Casy's mixture of Emersonian idealism and a particular form of American communalism. He plans to translate Casy's dream of organizing people to improve their living conditions into action.