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The Power of Steinbeck’s Fiction

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Spencer CarleLeave a Comment

In his novel, The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck provides a literary interpretation of the struggles people faced and their fight for survival on the road. Basic survival needs when traveling seldom occur to the common traveller today; 80 years ago, especially during the Great Depression, basic survival (apart from hope for a better life) was the entirety of any …

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Despair and Hope

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Nicole1 Comment

The Grapes of Wrath was beautifully written in a way that some of the other texts we have read were not. It combined some well developed characters with an interesting and heart wrenching journey, all told in a descriptive and authentic way. I particularly enjoyed Steinbeck’s descriptive language. He really has a way of transporting you to the place by …

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In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Lucas Acosta1 Comment

I thought the first chapter of the novel would be a perfect preface to the pictures done by White and Caldwell. Steinbeck talks of the dryness and how it cracks the land. He talks of the dust and how even if you couldn’t see it, it was still there. The severity of the dust is illustrated when it permeates into …

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(Somewhat) Monstrous Monsters

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Jason Gabaee2 Comments

Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath is a novel of many themes. One, which I found particularly interesting, was the relationship between farmers and landowners and how outside factors augmented the tension between them. Landowners push the farmers off the land because, given the environmental situation, the farmers are unable to farm. The dust storm and the drought are strong factors …

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Goin’ to California

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Jack1 Comment

There have been entire literary careers based on California’s largest natural resource: disappointment.  No generation in the 20th century seems to lack its Americans who think life in California is one big nugget of gold on the beach, only to find the reality of place whose history is essentially one continuous exploitation. The particular brand of disappointment that comes when …

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Dust, and more

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Andrew KarpanLeave a Comment

Penetrating the first pages of Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, the sensation of loss that we previously seen in Paul Taylor’s eulogy for the farmlands becomes a dense fog of forbidding. In the very first chapter, the scene between Tom Joad and the truck driver who picks him up takes place in a dense atmosphere of the unsaid: “the secret investigating …

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A Romantic Reality

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Net Supatravanij1 Comment

While Grapes of Wrath predominantly focuses in on the theme of the plight of migrant workers during the Great Depression, Steinbeck writes about the unity of humanity at a time when unity has never been needed more. In doing so, I feel that the novel has thus inadvertently romanticized the idea of manual labor, which brings to mind the saying, …

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Why So Blue? (I Definitely Meant Gray)

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Zoe Hall1 Comment

Steinbeck pays immense attention to color in Grapes of Wrath. The introduction of the earth, which seems to embody its own character in the story, involves the use of colors like “red country” or “grey country” and another reference to “dark red country” that disappears under “a green cover” in times of prosperity but morphs into “a thin hard crust,” …

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Nothing dramatic, just life.

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Frank Cheng2 Comments

The book talks about the farmers leaving their homes for California but finding the conditions in California nothing as food as they had anticipated. The ‘Capitalists’ take advantage of the excess amount of work force and lower the wages to the point that the workers could barely feed their families. Once the work is done, worker are kicked out and …

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So, Who Do We Shoot?

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Laura Casado1 Comment

John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath examines an interesting aspect of the Great Depression: the relationship between the physical land of America and the American people. It challenges core principles of what it means to aspire towards the American dream of having your own home and owning property. This idea is presented from various perspectives on what it means to even …

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Sink or Swim

In The Travel Habit, 7. Grapes of Wrath by Amy Greenspan1 Comment

In true Steinbeck fashion, the Grapes of Wrath is filled with beautiful, heavily descriptive imagery. Although many have criticized Steinbeck for being overly descriptive, this sort of writing works incredibly well for a novel on this topic. In the first chapter, we are struck by the contrast between the dead, cracked land and the beautiful description of it. Steinbeck sets …