12 January 2013
Grapes of Wrath Analysis
The cold, soaked earth, which was a source of life not too long ago, abducts a young child while the mother can only watch hopelessly as the husband shovels mounds of dirt. This event is not too different than most that citizens living during the Dust Bowl had to deal with. The self-destructive nature caused the American people to keep expanding and shaping the land as they saw fit. Because of this they overworked the land which, combined with drought, caused the Dust Bowl. The big corporations soon bought out most of the land in the Mid-West and many families were soon forced to make their living by other means. The shift of these families out west to a limited number of jobs damaged the United States' economy. In Chapter 25 of the Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck summarizes the human nature of self-destruction causing the corporations to showcase their greed and how it affected the laborers of California.
Steinbeck begins the section by painting a picture of California in (paragraph 1 and 2) in order to show how beautiful the country was when it was untouched by corporations. Steinbeck sets up many metaphors and images that he sums up towards the end of the chapter. He describes a beautiful California in which "fruit blossoms are fragrant pink" and flower petals "carpet the earth with pink and white."; using spring colors such as pink, white, and green to how California was beautiful and peaceful. The beautiful, lush landscape that Steinbeck describes also draws parallels to the Garden of Eden when described as plentiful with fruit; so much so that "little crutches must be placed under them(the branches) to support the weight" just as the Garden of Eden was described as being plentiful with fruit; showing the transformation of a place that is generally regarded as the most beautiful place while also enhancing the degree of beauty that California has. Steinbeck describes the California hills as...