The novel Grapes of Wrath is national epic. In the novel, on a broad background of socio-political life of the country during the crisis Steinbeck tells about the fate of the Joad family, one of the many thousands who have fallen between crisis. The Joads gathered their few belongings in the old car and went to the West. Like other migrants from the central states, which were drove to California by the drought, the Joads go through disappointments as well. In the minds of yesterday’s farmer the concept of I still firmly seats, he does not care about the fate of the neighboring families. But on the roads of America, which are full of half a million desperate people driving in broken trucks, petrol and money is running out, food is over, and there are no jobs, their mind starts to change. In the crucible of misery and deprivation unity and solidarity are born.
In the novel, family is a means of survival. Without each other, the Joads would have not been able to deal with the loss of their land or on the way to California. The Joads have only one weapon against cold and bitter world around – the family. They together with other families realize that they are safer and stronger when they reach to other families, and when they build a sense of community.
The Joads and the like are not pretending for anything in life. Their aspirations are simple and unpretentious: to cultivate the land and to live the fruits of their own hands. But that’s the whole point – the American way of life deprives them of it.
The way to Californian paradise turned out for the Joads a tragedy. They were forced to leave their native land. For them it was not only a place of everyday hard work, but also the embodiment of goodness and justice in the world. Their love to nature is a natural sense of a worker, who thinks of the earth as a living organism, for whom the land gives a harvest.
The tragedy of these ordinary US citizens, thrown out of life by society, is presented in the novel. The fate of the Joads, disintegrated due to unbearable circumstances is cruel and tragic and leaves little hope in the possibility of happiness for the man who wants to earn a living for the family with an honest work. And in the minds of ordinary people get filled with rage, the grapes of wrath grow in their hearts. The Joads, like a drop of water, reflect the specific features of the national consciousness and the fundamental social contradictions and problems of American life in the 1930s of 20th century.
The novel Grapes of Wrath is national epic. In the novel, on a broad background of socio-political life of the country during the crisis Steinbeck tells about the fate of the Joad family, one of the many thousands who have fallen between crisis. The Joads gathered their few belongings in the old car and went to the West.