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Grapes of Wrath
Throughout history man has made many journeys, far and wide, Moses
great march though the Red Sea and Columbusí crossing of the Atlantic Ocean
are only a few of mans greatest voyages. Even today great journeys are being made. In every instances people have had to rise above themselves and over come emence odds. The Joads did just that by traveling to California to find work.
Steinbeck shows one aspect of this real life journey by displaying it by a turtle and itís struggle to reach the other side of a road. As the turtle is about to reach his goal, it is returned to itís original location, but it does not waver in itís determination, and continues across the road until it reaches the other side. The Joad family and Casy identify with this the most because the undergo tremendous heartache, yet they stay true to their plans and never give up. They are faced with death and sickness, but they never give up.
Steinbeck wrote ďIn the evening a strange thing happened: twenty families became one family, the children were the children of all the loss of home became one loss, and the golden time in the West was one dreamĒ This was what the Joads were searching for they wanted to feel like they belonged. Ma was the one who was mostly searching for this. This is her journey to keep the family together. Her belief that a broken-family will not be able to accomplish anything. This is displayed by her not allowing the two cars to split and arrive at California at different times, when one of the cars breaks down, as they are leaving Oklahoma. Ma says ďI ainít a-gonna go.Ē The only way sheíll let the family break up is if pa whips her and makes her go.
País journey is displayed by his trying to fit in and make a difference. He does not handle this move very well, and throughout their journey, he is confused, and not as headstrong as Ma. He realizes this also, he knows that he canít help the family the way he use to. So he searches for anyway he can help. When the rain was coming it was this idea to dig a ditch. It was a good idea but it failed and it reflected on him.
Tom Joad is a very complicated individual, who is a tremendous asset and at the same time a tremendous burden. His Parole causes his family an unneeded worry, while his ability to get work while very few people do, also benefited the family. He is also the main protagonists for his family, with his independent nature, and the main follower of Casyís philosophy on human nature. Tomís journey let to Casyís death it wasnít his fault but he realized the importance of Casyís ideas. This ultimately let to this leaving the family to help other people. Tom said ď...Iíll be arouní in the dark. Iíll be everíwhere - wherever you look. Wherever theyís a fight so hungry people can eat, Iíll be there. Wherever theyís a cop beatiní up a guy, Iíll be there....Iíll be in the way guys yell when theyíre mad aní - Iíll be in the way kids laugh when theyíre hungry aní they know supperís ready. Aní when our folks eat the stuff they raise aní live in the houses they build - why Iíll be there.Ē Tom was in a way like a hero to his people.
Casy has frequently been compared with Jesus Christ, and his lifestyle of preaching and leading people in revolt, as well as sacrificing himself for Tom and the Joad family demonstrates this common held belief well. He also had a follower, or disciple in Tom, who after Casyís death carries his message, and aids other with it. The Joad family along with Casy show the benefit of people uniting in order to accomplish goals.
Rose of Sharon baby symbolizes live and death. The baby dies but in a way it brings live to the old man who needs milk. The end of the book is not the end of their journey. The people are only still at the beginning. But the hardest part is past.
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U.S. Route 66, Dust Bowl, The Grapes of Wrath, Joad, John Steinbeck
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