Summary of the Grapes of Wrath

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  • Topic: The Grapes of Wrath, Great Depression, Tom Joad
  • Pages : 2 (515 words )
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  • Published : September 28, 2012
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Summary of the Grapes of Wrath
In the beginning, or the exposition, we are introduced to the main characters, including Tom Joad, Jim Casy, Ma Joad, Grandpa Joad, Grandma Joad, Al Joad, Noah Joad, Pa Joad, Connie, and Rose of Sharon. We are also introduced to the Great Depression. Finally, we learn that the Joads have lost their house and are going to move to California after hearing from handbills that there are jobs there. The rising action is next. Even though most of the rising action is spent with the Joads in various camps, there are a few main events that happen. First Grampa Joad dies. He dies after he has a stroke. The next event is Grandma dies. She is heart-broken after her husband dies and was hallucinating for several days prior to her own death. Next in the story, the Joads learn that in California there are not as many jobs as the handbills let on. They learn this after many people tell them stories of joblessness. After this, Noah and Connie run away. While they don't run away at the same time or together they do run way at nearly the same time. Noah, who is considered to be “misshapen,” in body and mind, falls in love with the cool clear water of a river and says to Tom “It ain't no use. I was in that there water. An' I ain't a-gonna leave her,” (Steinbeck 116). Connie leaves after he realizes that the situation in California is grim. Next in the story, Jim Casy, sacrifices himself for Tom after Tom punches a deputy. The final two events of the rising action are the Joads' arrival in California and finding of jobs. At the Joads new job they meet back up with Jim Casy. After this came the climax. The entire story peaks with Jim Casy's death and Tom's killing of a man. Jim Casy is killed in a fight during a workers strike. Jim Casy's last words are “You don't a know what your doin'” echoing Jesus Christ's famous last words “Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do.” Tom, acting out of anger, kills the man who killed Jim. After this...
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