“Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck depicts the journey of poor whites during the era of sharecropping and new developments. During the great Dust Bowl, after World War 1 the Joad family is forced to leave their home that they’d been living in for many generations. Tractors had taken over the Great Plains; only these machines could handle the Dust Bowl. Tom Joad after coming home from being in the McAlester State penitentiary finds his home empty; his family, as well as others had left for California after being promised jobs.John Steinbeck wrote this book to show the world all the horrors that these poor white families went through. Tom Joad the main character in this story is a high-spirited man who is highly opinionated. After arriving, they realize how bad the working rights were and Tom Joad begins to stand up for it. John Steinbeck to write this novel he travelled with a family to California after losing their home to the tractors. At first he sets the scene for the Dustbowl that causes all the chaos. The farmers put handkerchiefs on their mouth while they stare at their drying crops hopeless. In this chapter John Steinbeck very vividly shares with the reader the sadness of the Dustbowl.Tom hitches a ride from a trucker to reach his home and it is then he firsts hears of the “cats” the tractors driving off all the farmers from their land and to California. Tom becomes offended and says the trucker is sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong. When arriving, he found the old priest and his childhood friend Muley. He then finds out that his family, as well as others was, moving to California to find new jobs. Everything the trucker had said was true and Tom had ignored him. On their way to California they stop at a camp w…
…hostility that made the little towns group and arm as though to repel an invader, squads with pick handles, clerks and storekeepers with shotguns, guarding the world against their own people” (Steinbeck, 193).
Overall, Steinbeck portrayed the era of the Great Depression through the eyes of white farmers extensively. The drought that hit during the 1930s severely effected farmers and made them desperate for jobs. Steinbeck provided a detailed analysis on the problems farming families faced during Great Depression. I would recommend any student taking an American history class to read “Grapes Of Wrath”. It helps to better see what American farmers were going through in this era. Steinbeck himself went with a family and traveled across the United States seeing what he has depicted so vividly in this book.