Steinbeck wrote his novel about the times of the Great Depression, the gloomy and stormy life of the common people, about the great hardships that many people were unable to overcome on their own.
Today we will consider a brief plot and the meaning of the novel “The Grapes of Wrath”. So sit back, it will be interesting!
Briefly about the plot
It is not customary to talk about this in the United States, but at the turn of the 1930-1940s of the 20th century, a real tragedy broke out on the prairies of Canada and America. Dust storms with violent force simply constantly destroyed crops that barely pecked on the scorched earth.
However, worse than this, the damage that dust storms caused to buildings, cars and the farmers themselves. Dust generously settled in the lungs, causing pneumonia, covered the fields with a thick layer, mixing with the remnants of fertile soil. Subsequently, this event was called the “Dust Pot”.
Approximately in such conditions the protagonist of the novel, Tom Joad, lives. He, like other farmers, is thinking about whether to stay on rented land or try his luck in other states.
Farmers were mired in debt because they could not pay the owners of the land due to lack of crops, the roads were knee-deep in dust and sand, and people looked dumbfounded into a hungry future.
Joad himself can be called a law-abiding and fair person who is always ready to come in difficult times. However, he accidentally killed a neighbor’s son in a drunken fight, and now he was forced to go to prison. However, on the way out, he also encounters a dusty madness that has gripped others.
However, fortunately for Tom, he has a strong family in which his past guilt means nothing. He has a grandson, a son and a brother, without whom the man would have been very bad. While Joad was gone, the family worked the fields honestly to get a penny to live on. However, it soon became beyond their strength, and the bank took the territory that was cultivated by more than one generation of his family.
Now the Joad family was, like so many thousands of others, homeless and landless, left to their own devices.
The meaning of the book
Steinbeck managed to create a very harsh, but realistic and truthful work about the great injustice in the world, as well as about the inequality between the American and Canadian populations. Despite the civil war, the Declaration and other documents, society in the United States did not become equal, because there were preserved officials and a privileged class that enjoyed the benefits of the labor of ordinary workers.
The novel also reveals the theme of the unscrupulousness of power, whose representatives are ready to leave people to their fate, depriving them of everything in order to cover their skins. It is noteworthy that landlords first expel farmers from their land, and then offer them work for such meager wages that there is not enough for a quality family dinner.
The author just shows the thirst for profit, the amazing egoism of the wealthier classes of society, who prefer not to notice how small children die of hunger, and women and the elderly suffocate from pneumonia, forced to sleep on bare ground.
In fairness, Steinbeck shows the arbitrariness not only of the rich, but also of the natives of other states, who are contemptuous of refugees, fearing that they would not survive them from their own land.
The writer says that in a difficult moment, the real face of a person, a stratum or the whole society is exposed. And indeed, all the darkest and most vile in human souls comes out only in critical situations.
That’s all. If you have any questions or suggestions, be sure to write them in the comments. And we have prepared several other reviews for you. Here they are:
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The meaning of the book “Lust for Life” about Vincent van Gogh from the famous Irving Stone
The meaning of the book “Amendment-22” by Heller or how a pilot tries to survive at the front
How did the novel “Murder on the Orient Express” by Agatha Christie end or how the genius of the detective succumbed to collective responsibility
Peaceful sky above your head and see you soon on the pages of new articles!