Summary Of a Summary Of The Grapes Of Wrath

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

The Grapes of Wrath, written by John Steinback, is about a boy who lived during the agricultural depression. The protagonist of the story is Tom Joad, a boy who lived in Oklahoma with his family as farmers. His family, the Toads, consisted of his Grandpa, Granma, Dad (Pa), Mom (Ma), uncle, and numerous other siblings. While their past was great as they made a lot of money due to World War I and a high demand of crop, their present left a lot to be desired. With a lot of debt and many loans on their shoulders due to the lack of demand in crop, they became a very poor family as did all the other farmers in Oklahoma. As a result local banks started getting scared wondering whether or not they would get their money back. On top of all this, what scared the banks even more was that the stock market crashed. Even nature seemed not to be on their side, as a drought occurred which dried out all the fertile soil and turned it into dust. All the ground water had also evaporated leaving the soil very dry. This is why the time period was known as the “Dust Bowl”. With all of these problems, people decided to go to a better place were there would be lots of jobs. Like everyone else, the Joad family made a decision to go to California and seek a better life. They sold all their possessions for whatever they could get and started their journey.

The journey was long and tiring, and as a result Tom’s grandparents both died. After a long time, they finally arrived at the San Joaquin Valley. The family started working right when they arrived and they barely made enough to survive. The jobs weren’t yearly jobs, but instead season-based jobs. Their job was to harvest certain crops for the farmers in exchange for some money. During one of these seasons, one of Tom’s old preachers from church started a strike in order to achieve higher pay and better conditions for migrant workers. The preacher named Casy was killed for starting the boycott. Casy’s death deeply angered Tom, so Tom killed the policeman that hurt Casy. Afterwards, he went and hid from society to prevent going to jail. One day, his story gets out that he killed a policeman, and as a result he builds up his courage and tells his mom that he wants to be like Casy. He takes some money his mom had given him and leaves his family to fight for and help migrants. Some time after Tom left, his eldest sister, the Rose of Sharon, was ready to give birth. The baby arrived dead and this left the Rose of Sharon sad as she had big plans for him.

Around the same time they were alerted that there was a starving man who needed something to eat or drink or else he would die. The Rose of Sharon gives some of her bodies milk to the man to save him. The symbolic move brings together the story to show how this was a time of struggle and pain. It shows how none of the rich people cared, only those in poverty looked out for one another. The story was written without a conclusion to show how they continuously struggled. John Steinback wanted to convey how there was no “better time”, the period was filled with only struggles and hardships.

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