The novel "The Grapes of Wrath" was written by John Steinbeck. He told about Joad's family, who lived in the US in 1930. The farmers moved to California in search of work, food and shelter, because they were ruined by drought and sandstorms and did not have money to keep the house. General economic downturn and the monopoly of banks on the land uprooted hundreds of thousands of ordinary Americans, small farmers, who earned money by growing of crops on rented areas. And the tragedy of the one family merged with the tragedy of thousands of other families. It led the Americans to the border of a social revolt.
California was their hope. They believed that in the West there was a lot of work, houses, and food. During the Great Depression the family had a lot of difficulties, but the hope did not leave them.
The author could show the worst - the relation of man to man, contempt of superior governing over the fugitives, the homeless and the hobos.
But apart from nightmares and darkness the author did not forget to remind and teach about the most important - the family. Because the family is something special that gives us a chance to believe in ourselves and hope for the best.
The family of Joad was very unusual. Each character was not only an individual, but he was an outline of a certain type of people, typical of that time. Mother was "a rod" that held the family. Father was the driving force of a stubborn, hard worker to the backbone. The next one was imprisoned son, who spent time there "because it had happened" and did not repent. There were excellent images of grandmothers and grandfathers who could not leave their native land and they were ready to die there, with their house.
Dust Bowl was a kind of despair, which hindered to grow crops. There were unbearable heat, endless fields and roads, cracked asphalt, and the wind. The wind raised the dust and enveloped you from top to toe. It did not bring the expected wind chill, it only exacerbated. This was America during the Great Depression.
The government destroyed families' farms and houses. Some people had to find new attempts to survive, but the others became homeless, because their home was a part of their life. The small salary could not provide a normal life, that's why people were exhausted from hunger and adults worked for peanuts to feed their children. There was a certain cycle: to feed a family, a person should pay rent for the land, but the government paid few cents. That's why they were deprived of land and had to go to California for a new job. But in California their salary did not differ from the previous one.
The art developed slowly during the Great Depression, but the New Deal Policy by Roosevelt increased the culture in the US. Government adopted projects such as: the Federal Art Project, the Federal Music Project, the Federal Writers' Project, and the Federal Theatre Project as part of the WPA. That's why many creative people could find a work and made something special. For example, the Federal Theatre Project could show poor people plays on the streets; the Federal Art Project provided new centers for painters to depict the life of the poor people. The music, songs tried to calm people, who had the social distress. The song "Happy Days Are Here Again" was everywhere. It was like a program of New Deal to increase the conditions of the Americans (Encyclopedia Britannica).
Bloom, Harold. John Steinbeck's The Grapes Of Wrath. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1988. Print.
"Great Depression". Encyclopaedia Britannica. Encyclopaedia Britannica Online.Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc., 2015. Web. November, 2015
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