The Joad family had to abandon their home and their livelihoods. They had to uproot and set adrift because tractors were rapidly industrializing their farms.
He attended Stanford University without graduating, and though he lived briefly in New York, he remained a lifelong Californian. Steinbeck began writing novels inbut he garnered little commercial or critical success until the publication of Tortilla Flat in A trio of novels in the late s focused on the lives of migrant workers in California: During the early s, a severe drought led to massive agricultural failure in parts of the southern Great Plains, particularly throughout western Oklahoma and the Texas panhandle.
These areas had been heavily overcultivated by wheat farmers in the years following World War I and were covered with millions of acres of loose, exposed topsoil. In the absence of rain, crops withered and died; the topsoil, no longer anchored by growing roots, was picked up by the winds and carried in billowing clouds across the region.
Huge dust storms blew across the area, at times blocking out the sun and even suffocating those unlucky enough to be caught unprepared.
Unable to pay their mortgages or invest in the kinds of industrial equipment now necessitated by commercial competition, many Dust Bowl farmers were forced to leave their land. Without any real employment prospects, thousands of families nonetheless traveled to California in hopes of finding new means of survival.
But the farm country of California quickly became overcrowded with the migrant workers. Many of the residents of these camps starved to death, unable to find work.
When Steinbeck decided to write a novel about the plight of migrant farm workers, he took his task very seriously. To prepare, he lived with an Oklahoma farm family and made the journey with them to California.
When The Grapes of Wrath appeared, it soared to the top of the bestseller lists, selling nearly half a million copies. Although Steinbeck went on to have a productive literary career and won the Nobel Prize for Literature innone of his later books had the impact of The Grapes of Wrath.
He died in However, in writing his novel, Steinbeck attempted not only to describe the plight of migrant workers during the Depression but also to offer a pointed criticism of the policies that had caused that plight. Thus, the novel stands as a chronicle of the Depression and as a commentary on the economic and social system that gave rise to it.Tutor name Date Steinbeck’s purpose in the Grapes of Wrath The Grapes of Wrath is a realist novel by John Steinbeck.
The novel is an historical text, which has endured a legacy of many decades. The Grapes of Wrath 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 .
John Steinbeck, Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath, –, ed. Robert DeMott (New York: Viking Press, ) is a series of journal entries kept by the author while writing the novel. Relevant passages from this text are included in Activity 2.
The Grapes of Wrath 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 .
From the viewpoint of an historian critically review John Steinbeck’s portrayal of the Great Depression and the New Deal in The Grapes of Wrath.
This essay will endeavour to answer the question on whether the portrayal of the Great Depression in the novel The Grapes of Wrath is indeed correct, or if the scene of Oklahoma farmers fleeing the dustbowl is exaggerated and inaccurate.
The Grapes of Wrath is a poignant example of class warfare before the term was even coined. This book is a time capsule of times passed -- and history will repeat itself if we don't learn from the lesson Steinbeck has to teach.