Analysis Of The Book ' The Grapes Of Wrath ' Essay

Analysis Of The Book ' The Grapes Of Wrath ' Essay

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Coming Full Circle

Symbolism in the Conclusion of “The Grapes of Wrath”

The last few chapters of The Grapes of Wrath have always been a controversial topic within the literature world. “The Associated Farmers of Kern County California denounced the book as ‘obscene sensationalism’ and ‘propaganda in its vilest form.’” (Shockley) The book was banned multiple times, including by the Kansas City libraries as well as the Library Board of East St. Louis, which actually ordered the librarian to burn the three copies that were on hand. The ending of the book involves a situation that most likely no reader ever saw coming. Rose of Sharon Joad, with her child being recently stillborn, breast feeds a sick, starving man in his time of need. John Steinbeck used this situation to show the desperation that the people of the Great Depression era were showing. Steinbeck’s use of this event in The Grapes of Wrath can be seen as a survival method, coming full circle in the life cycle; a sort of rebirth, as well as the unification of people living through the Great Depression.

The thing that Rose of Sharon did for this man was definitely a survival method. Without her help and generosity, there was no way that the man would’ve survived much longer. She took it upon herself to put herself out there in a time of suffering and grief from the loss of her baby. Out of Rose of Sharon’s own need, she give life. “Out of the profoundest depth of despair comes the greatest assertion of faith.” (Lisca) When Rose of Sharon offered her breast milk to the man, and he wasn’t completely for the idea, she pursued anyway. Not only did her breast feeding the man lead to his survival, if only for a short time, but it also helped her in her survival. Because...


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...oneliness haunting her. (Blythe) This is a large fault in Faulkner’s writing, as he does not even follow his own principles.

All in all, Faulkner does not follow the ideas he presents in his Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech in his short story, A Rose For Emily. In fact, it seems that he goes toward using the exact opposite ideas. Instead of planting hope, courage, and love into the hearts and minds of his readers, he provides a feeling of weariness, as well as confusion, and possibly even doubt. It is not easy to understand why Faulkner would decide to write a story like this, since he did preach such different propaganda in his acceptance speech. The feelings portrayed in A Rose For Emily are very different than what you would expect from Faulkner, because of his thoughts in his acceptance speech, and that is why the two do not come together in sync. (Nebeker)




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