Greed and the Man

Pages: 3 (1017 words) Published: April 2, 2013
Steinbeck introduces many themes throguhout his novel. He uses Ethan to represent the trials and tribulations that an ordinary man may struggle with throughout that time period, he uses universal problems that slowly push a man over the edge. Ethan Hawley is a common man iwth old-fashioned morals. Throughout the story he struggles with temptations brought to him through different influences such as family, friends, and business. Theses temptations lead him to an inevitable downfall. Throughout the bigining of the novel, Ethan comes to realize that he is not the man he saw himself as. Deeper into the story Ethan comes to realize that his good morals were depriving his family, "A man without real hope or drive....Caged by habits and attitudes I thoguht of as being moral, even virtuous. And it may be that I had a smugness about being what i called "A good man""(88). He is pushed in his business life to become more, to lose his caring morals or else he would be letting his family down. Mr. Marullo tells Ethan "Business is money, money is not friendly"(23), therefore leading Ethan to think and actupon those words later in the Novel. Ethan's own boss influenced him to do bussiness in a dirty, corrupt mannor. Steinbeck uses foreshaddowing through Mr. Marillo again to say, "When you find out is too late"(23). Mr. Biggers also tries influencing Ethan's business life. Mr. Biggers wants Ethan to do business behind Mr. Marullo's back, with the excuse that everyone is doing it these days. When ethan said he didn't want to be dishonst to his boss, Mr. Biggers replied with "Who's double crossed? He doesn't lose anything and you make a buck"(24), he carrys on to say that everyone has the right to make a buck. Mr. Biggers influences Ethan to feel like he's got the right to be dishonest just like it seems everyone else has been this whole time. Ethan feels like he has been blinded to this corruptness and now that he's realizing that it is so common, he's starting to find it more...
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