Steinbeck’s Red Chrysanthemums East of Eden’s Grapes Essay

Every great writer creates powerful images and presents story lines that draw their readers deep into the pages of their books, however; any writer would be hard pressed to do so without incorporating their own feelings, trials and tribulations into the plots and John Steinbeck is no exception. Through his appreciation for adventure and willingness to indulge in it, Steinbeck found a myriad of fascinating people in addition to experiences that he was eager to share. Past various negative criticisms and frequent rejections of his work, he manages to provide relatable characters capable of deep connections to those who enter into the realms of his tales. John Steinbeck’s early life experiences influenced his portrayals of women, his love of the land, and his intimate connection to the plight of lower social classes, themes which translate into his work.Initially insecure from teasing in his youth, Steinbeck’s delayed sexual progression produced a need for female validation; a theme which presented itself as the characterization of women as sexual objects, particularly prostitutes, in his narratives. Jay Parini, author of “John Steinbeck: A Biography”, points out that Steinbeck endured nicknames such as little squirrel, muskrat and mouse from his own family relating to his physical features, which created in him a great propensity for shyness. Physical maturity that lagged behind his schoolmates added to his isolation from his peers, especially women (Parini 17). His friend George Mors disclosed that Steinbeck “spent much of his time with a stack of pulp novels and girlie magazines” demonstrating his desire for sexual stimulation yet insufficient resolve to seek it out (Parini 26). Steinbeck overcame his apprehension after happ…

…ings of the people he met along his way. While some of his works have been praised for their greatness and other discarded as junk, Steinbeck satisfied his need to write and in doing so shared some fantastic stories with the world.

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Works Cited

Parini, Jay. John Steinbeck. New York: Henry Holt andCompany, Inc., 1995. 9,12,13,17,25,26,38. Print.Beyond Boundries. Tuscaloosa: The University of AlabamaPress, 2002. 15,57,74. Print.John Steinbeck . Chelsea House Publishers, a division of MainLine Book Co., 1987. 92. Print.Readings on John Steinbeck. San Diego: Greenhaven Press,Inc., 1996. 15. Print.Moss, Joyce, and George Wilson. Overview: The Red Pony(1997): n.pag. Library Resource. Web. 9 May 2012.Shillinglaw, Susan. “The Martha Heasley Cox Center forSteinbeck Studies.” John Steinbeck, AmericanWriter n.pag. Web. 9 May 2012.

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