John Steinbeck’s Life of Virtue
“A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.” ("John Steinbeck." ALDH). John Steinbeck’s life was an ultimate journey where he faced criticism, hardships, and even harassment. He took risks that no one during this decade would have even thought about enduring; dropping out of college after seeing little interest in it and became a full time writer. This was a profession that created only a little amount of money at the time (John Steinbeck - Biography.). After the long voyage, Steinbeck finally realized that he had everything that he wanted and truly was living the American Dream. John Steinbeck is a world-renowned author with a stimulating life and countless literary works that have been criticized for years; his many life experiences have affected both him and his writing.
John Steinbeck lived from 1902-1968, during that time period wars were fought, financial issues plagued the world and famine struck the United States. The time period that Steinbeck grew up in was one with many hardships with danger lurking around every corner; which allowed him to change his life and writing topics. “World War I was one of the most significant conflicts in history, claiming millions of lives, significantly altering the map of Europe, and altering the global balance of power” (World War One). World War I began in 1914 and had a huge affect on people all across the world and the United States. Many of the enlisted American soldiers perished during the bloody war and they needed more soldiers, creating the first draft in the history of this country. At the end of the war almost ten million soldiers were dead, (fifty thousand of them were American soldiers), 21 million were wounded, and 7.7 million were missing or imprisoned (World War One). This war had cost millions of dollars and had eventually led the US into the great depression causing more problems. This war inspired Steinbeck to write one of his most loved novels, Tortilla Flat, based on a man having struggles after coming back from the war, a common theme to most men and women experiencing post war resettlement. Another unbearable event that happened in Steinbeck’s lifetime was the dustbowl. The Dust Bowl was another disaster that left many farms devastated and left little food for anyone to eat. “The 150,000-square-mile area, encompassing the Oklahoma and Texas has little rainfall, light soil, and high winds, a potentially destructive combination” (1940. "Dust Bowl — History.com). The soil was not fertile and there was little water to give the crops killing over sixty percent of the vegetation in that area. “When drought struck from 1934 to 1937, the soil lacked the stronger root system of grass as an anchor, so the winds easily picked up the loose topsoil and swirled it into dense dust clouds, called "black blizzards." (1940. "Dust Bowl — History.com). This devastation took a deep toll on Steinbeck’s family and he eventually wrote a book on this tragedy called The Grapes Of Wrath. Steinbeck is a writer that wrote about the hardships during his lifetime and how he and the country persevered. John Steinbeck had an amazing life filled with joy and success, but his life was not always tranquil. He had many obstacles that he had to overcome that eventually made him a successful author. Steinbeck was born into a middle class family who believed in a good education and also a man with good manners. His parents were very hard on him, but they only worked him to get the best out of him (John Steinbeck - Biography.). “He was shy but smart and early in his life formed an appreciation for the land, and in particular California's Salinas Valley, which would greatly inform his later writing” (John Steinbeck - Biography.). One of the most important and perhaps shocking decisions that he has made in his...
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