The Grapes of Wrath AO3 + AO5

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  • The Grapes of Wrath
    • AO3
      • In August 1939, the board of Kern County, California banned  Grapes of Wrath from libraries and schools in a 4-1 vote.
        • The book banning was supported by the local Associated Farmers who opposed organized labor
        • A local librarian attempted to get the ban lifted unsuccessfully
        • Following this ban, The American Library Association passed the Library Bill of Rights to ensure that Americans had the right to all information
      • In 1936, he wrote a less famous novel called In Dubious Battle, inspired by the California agricultural strikes that had been going since 1933.
      • His home town, Salinas, was also the site of a camp for workers in the nearby fields.
      • Steinbeck won the commission to write a series of articles for the San Francisco News titled 'The Harvest Gypsies' on the migrants
        • He visited Weedpatch Camps, and spoke to people there.
          • He was given vital research materials by the camp’s manager, Tom Collins.
    • AO5
      • Malcolm Cowley 1939
        • A hundred thousand rural households have been uprooted from the soil....and turned out on the highways.
        • The Grapes of Wrath 'is John Steinbeck’s longest and angriest and most impressive work.'
        • 'not only a family but a whole culture is being uprooted'
        • In the second half of the novel 'The author now has a thesis—that the migrants will unite and overthrow their oppressors'
        • 'Casy becomes a Christlike labor leader'
        • Rosasharon's saving of the dying man symbolizes  'the fruitfulness of these people and the bond that unites them in misfortune.'
        • Fitzgerald feels 'a deep fellow feeling' for the migrants
        • The Grapes of Wrath 'belongs very high in the category of the great angry books'
      • Steinbeck
        • 'it is the most heartbreaking thing in the world'
          • When referring to the migrant crisis
        • 'I want to put a tag of shame on the greedy bastards who are responsible for this.'
          • When referring to the migrant crisis
        • 'rip his reader’s nerves to rags'
        • 'Dignity is all gone, and spirit has turned to sullen anger before it dies.'
      • Sam Jordinson
        • 'You can almost sense him holding himself in; it would have been surprising if Steinbeck hadn’t gone on his furious subsequent writing binge.'
      • Alan Yuhas
        • Steinbeck's legacy was great because 'he suggested wrath could be good.'
        • The migrants they 'suffer, fight back and endure.'
        • 'The book opens with a nightmarish vision of drought and dust' and 'The book closes with biblical floods'
        • Steinbeck 'told a story of mankind's disrespect for the earth'
        • 'Steinbeck's observation that cruelty comes from fear and disappointment rings uncomfortably familiar' today
        • 'the heroes of Grapes should be familiar: migrant workers mistreated and discriminated by the states.'
        • 'Steinbeck's stories of police abuse don't seem out of place in a country where local law enforcement sometimes merits federal inquiry.'
        • 'The Grapes of Wrath is simply a parable of disillusionment and survival set in the American west'
        • the book 'builds on the west's quiet history of socialism'
        • 'Steinbeck didn't want us to lose hope; he wanted us to get angry at those who would ***** hope from us.'
        • 'Wrath ferments in disrespect and the abuse of power.'
          • 'Steinbeck's odd a call to outrage'
            • 'wrath, when it protects the weak, can renew hope.'


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