The Grapes Of Wrath: Rose Of Sharon And The Starving Man



Ma's eyes passed Rose of Sharon's eyes, and then came back to them. And the two women looked deep into each other. The girl's breath came short of gasping.
Ma smiled. "I knowed you would. I knowed!" (Chapter 30)
Nothing in The Grapes of Wrath outraged readers as did the scene in Chapter 30 where Rose of Sharon offers her breast to save the dying man from starvation. Clifton Fadiman in The New Yorker wrote that "the ending is the tawdriest kind of fake symbolism." Many would agree with him, however, if the novel were to be examined closely, one would find that the ending was only "right." For during the narrative, Rose of Sharon, who so often in the early chapters is a whining, ...

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lives in the past, harboring guilt over his wife's death. Al lives for girls and cars. Pa is so broken at the loss of his farm that for much of the novel he allows all decisions to be made by Ma. Ma, at the novel's beginning, has only one passion: to keep the "fambly" together. Ruthie torments her brother and exhibits childish ways almost until the end of the book. Even Casy, when the novel opens, is adrift. He's sure there's something to be learned in the midst of all the suffering, but until he goes to prison, even he lacks real conviction or directed action. However, the critical reader sees a change coming in the novel that is more than restlessness in the land. The main characters by Chapter 30 all have undergone an "education." The suffering has changed them, has redeemed them.
The Grapes of Wrath is a novel by John Steinbeck which begins in Oklahoma and leads to California, first published in 1976, which exposes the desperate conditions under which the migratory ...

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between revolution and fascism in California's great valleys." The social injustice depicted in the novel was depicted so sharply that Steinbeck was even accused of being a revolutionary. An Oklahoma congressman disliked the novel saying that the book is a "black, infernal creation of a twisted, distorted mind." Warren French said that "…the real story of this novel is not the Joads' search for economic security but their education, which transforms them from self-concern to a recognition of their bond with the whole human race." A critical commentary by Joseph Warren Beach affirms that "The theme that all men belong together and are a part of a greater whole that transcends ...

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Added: 6/29/2007 08:59:12 PM
Category: Book Reports
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