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John Steinbeck Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Steinbeck’s Regionalism

John Steinbeck’s contribution to American literature is cemented in the works of East of Eden, The Grapes of Wrath and Cannery Row. His use of regionalism and his simplistic characters with everyday problems has gained him the reputation of one of the greatest writers in American history. The following essay will give examples of Steinbeck’s writing, why it is important and the element of regionalism will be addressed as one of the most important concepts in Steinbeck’s writing. One element with which Steinbeck writes with great emphasis is hope. The family Joads in The Grapes of Wrath epitomize this lack of hope in some of the family members and in the other family members epitomize a plethora of hope as…

Life of Pi and Religion

The Grapes of Wrath has many Religious parallels to the bible. The characters are paralleled with people from the bible, some easily recognizable. Also the Grapes of Wrath is during the Great Depression which can be an allusion to the horrible treatments and suffering times the Israelist people had to deal with reflects to this time period. The plot of John Steinbeck’s novel, The Grapes of Wrath, can easily be related to many biblical references as well as it could be applied to the daily struggles of the lives of Christians. Two particular portions of this novel stick out more than any other. Those are the characters of Jim Casey and Pa Joad. Jim Casey reminds me of Moses from…

Machinery vs. Human Characteristics in Grapes of Wrath

Humans and machinery have one major difference that sets them apart: emotions. Machines don’t feel emotions the way humans do , or have characteristics like humans. In chapter 5 of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes Of Wrath, Steinbeck is portraying a land owner giving the bad news to a tenant farmer that he is being kicked off his land, who does not take it lightly. Throughout the chapter , Steinbeck is depicting the idea that machinery is void of all human characteristics and emotions. As humans becomes less powerful in the time period of Steinbecks novel , machinery is taking over their jobs. “The tenant system won’t work anymore. One man on a tractor can take the place of twelve or…

Monotony in Elisa’s life

Many people in our modern society lead monotonous lives; in other words they follow a routine and have little or no excitement in their lives. Sometimes we fool ourselves by believing that a monotonous life is happy life, but it does not work the same way for every person. Leading a monotonous life can be very harmful to one’s well being and those around us. In the short story “The Chrysanthemums” by John Steinbeck we see a person who finds herself in this situation, following a daily routine without much change in it. When a person realizes that they have been living a boring life they start to feel dissatisfied with what they have accomplished, act on impulse and even…

Gow Rhetorical Analysis

Chapter 19 of the book The Grapes of Wrath presents historical background on the development of land ownership in California, and traces the American settlement of the land taken from the Mexicans. Fundamentally, the chapter explores the conflict between farming solely as a means of profit making and farming as a way of life. Throughout this chapter, Steinbeck uses a wide variety of persuasive techniques including parallelism, diction, and metaphors to convey his attitude about the plight of migrants migrating to California. This chapter is filled with parallelism. The Californians wonder “what if [the okies] won’t scare,” (236) and “what if they stand up” (236) and “shoot back” (236). Here, Steinbeck is pointing out the natives’ fears and hinting about…

Grapes of Wrath (Sin&Virtue)

Through out John Steinbeck’s controversial novel, The Grapes of Wrath, the protagonist are faced with a daunting idea; that there is no ‘good’ and ‘bad’ forces in the world. Grapes of Wrath was published in an era filled with discrimination, hate, and fear directed at the fleeing “Okies”; in the early 1930’s the midwestern states where decimated by a foreseen but still devastating Dust Bowl. The reader joins the main characters, the Joad family, as they travel across the country hoping for work in a foreign state; California. Through out their trip they seem to come to believe that “there ain’t no sin and there ain’t no virtue” just people doing what people do. Yet the more they seem to…

How the Characters React Towards the Shooting of Candy’s Og

The way the characters react towards the shooting of Candy’s dog reveals a lot abut the characters that we might not have expected. Carlson offers to shoot the old dog, complaining many times of the smell. The shooting of Candy’s dog shows the callousness of Carlson and the reality of old age and infirmity. Carlson typifies the men George describes as “the loneliest guys in the world”. He is outwardly friendly, but essentially selfish. He finds the smell of an old dog offensive so the dog must be shot. He shows very little regard to the dog’s owner, Candy. He relentlessly pursues the dog’s death, more for his own comfort than to put the dog out of its misery. However,…

Style Analysis: The Tenacious Turtle

In chapter three of Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck, The adventure of a determined turtle progressing along a road is illustrated. The tone of the chapter is optimistically objective, as well as sympathetic toward the struggles the turtle encounters. The turtle has the goal of crossing the road within his journey, and the degrading challenges he faces empowers him to continue to move forward. The diction functions to portray the character of the turtle and how he physically moves throughout his journey. The turtle’s “fierce” and “old humorous eyes” are able to overcome his “frantic” emotion of fear extroverting his competitiveness. The purpose of this is to exhibit the fact that self-doubt is present within the turtle, however it…

Family Unit in the Grapes of Wrath

I dedicate this humble work to those whose blood runs in my veins; to my dearly loved parents and to: my dearest sisters all fundamental B.A student all my delighted and respected English teachers all those who will read this modest research paper ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I’m foremost grateful to my supervisor Dr. YASSINE Rachida whose guidance and continual encouragement have efficaciously helped towards the fulfillment of this modest research paper. I would like also to thank deeply whose efforts in class room opened my eyes and inspired the idea and the subject of this research paper, namely: Mr. ELHAMRI Rachid. I would like as well to express my deep feelings of gratitude to my little precious family that supported me to…

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Every piece of literature created is influenced by the time in which it was written. A particular text is a reflection of the era or period in which it was born. An author is contained within a specific time in history, and his writing becomes the result of the social, economic or political milieu of that time. This is the reason why it is extremely important for a reader to determine the context of the story in order to fully understand a piece of literature. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck is a great example of how a text reflects a particular era. It is a novel written in the 1930s and revealed what was happening during that time…

Social Injustice in Cathcer in the Rye and Grapes of Wrath

Do you know what is really going on in our world? Behind the safety of your closed doors there is social injustice. Our past and present is a world full of unfairness. For example how the “Okies” were treated in The Grapes of Wrath, or how of the rich get richer and go to private boarding schools to get the best education in The Catcher in the Rye. Social Injustice arises when equals are treated unequally and unequals are treated equally John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath people, in places such as Oklahoma, were told that if they moved to California they would live a lavish life and there would be plenty of jobs, but oh boy were they told…

John Steinbeck

Steinbeck as an author always seemed to have a niche for writing stories that made you think about the importance of life. Respect for life was highlighted in his stories many times, whether it’s the presence of or the lack of. A few stories that involved this were The Pearl, Of Mice and Men and Travels with Charlie. He knew how to tug on peoples heart strings and make them really think about what life truly means to us even after we close the book. The importance of respecting life is evident. Life is something that is beautiful when it is given and sorrow some when its taken away. The beauty of something alive can easily outweigh the beauty of…

Characters Effect on a Reader

Characters dealing with a situation affect each reader differently. The characters reaction to a situation may have a reader feel exactly as the character does, or in some instances, the reader may look more at how differently they would feel in the same situation. In an attempt to answer Henry James on how characters are only as interesting as their response to the particular situation we will look at “The Chrysanthemums” by John Steinbeck and “To Build a Fire” by Jack London. In “The Chrysanthemums” we are introduced to Elisa Allen at her ranch working in her garden. She is described in the story as: “She was thirty five. Her face was lean and strong and her eyes were clear…

English A Language And Literature

These notes to examiners are intended only as guidelines to assist marking. They are not offered as an exhaustive and fixed set of responses or approaches to which all answers must rigidly adhere. Good ideas or angles not offered here should be acknowledged and rewarded as appropriate. Similarly, answers which do not include all the ideas or approaches suggested here should be rewarded appropriately. SECTION A Candidates are required to compare a letter from John Steinbeck to his eldest son Thom with an “advice” comic strip by Ken Cursoe, both of which explore the virtues (or not) of being in love. An adequate to good analysis will: • note the commonalities of the two texts, such as Thom and Luke both…

Distinctly Visual Essay

Explore the ways the distinctly visual is viewed through experience of others Distinctly visual images are viewed through experiences of others, which are significant in developing portraits of the environment and relationships. Henry Lawson’s ‘Loaded Dog’ and ‘Drovers Wife’, produce distinctly visual images through the experience of characters relationships with each other and their ability to survive in the harsh Australian environment. Similarly, John Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men’ looks at the environment, as a way to develop the relationship between characters and as a result creating a distinctly visual image for the audience In the prescribed text ‘Loaded Dog’, Lawson, develops visuals through the use of larrikin behavior in the Australian environment. The emptiness and often-hopeful feelings in the…

Grapes of Wrath and Migration Experience

The novel, “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck, takes you on a chronicle of one family’s migration, from Oklahoma to California as a result of exodus. The family is forced to migrate west in search of a livelihood during the great depression of the 1930’s. The structure of the chapters in this book alternate between narrating the journey of the Joad family with descriptions of the westward movement of migrant farmers in the 1930s as they flee drought and industry. Steinbeck, a native of California, draws from first hand experiences to guide the reader not only along the journey of one family in particular, the Joad’s but, to also expose the desperate conditions of migrant farming-families faced during the…

Characterization in John Steinbeck’s Flight

1. Sophistication- Sherwood Anderson 2. Big Two- Hearted River- Ernest Hemingway 3. Winter Dreams- F. Scott Fitzgerald 4. The Bear- William Faulkner 5. The Catbird Seat- James Thurber 6. The Jilting of Granny Weatherall- Katherine Anne Porter 7. The Devil and Daniel Webster- Stephen Vincent Benet 8. Flight- John Steinbeck 9. Winter Night- Kay Boyle 10. Another April- Jesse Stuart 11. A Worn Path- Eudora Welty 12. The Crop- Flannery O’Connor 13. The First Seven Years- Bernard Malamud 14. The Lucid Eye in Silver Town- John Updike 15. A Visit to Grandmother- William Melvin Kelley 16. Lost- Isaac Bashevis Singer Characterization: Almost animalisticMrs. Torres and Pepe were the only protagonists. Mrs. Torres was flat, but Pepe was a round character….

Relationships In A Time That This Novel Is Set

How does Steinbeck present ideas of relationships in a time that this novel is set? Steinbeck portrays a world dominated by authoritative white males. It is the attitude of this social structure that permeate ranch society and those who come from outside these expectations are inferior. Of Mice and Men describes the plight of which women, disabled people, black people and people with mental difficulties endure and suffer simply because they do not fit into the ideal category which we see whilst they interact with each other. Lennie’s brief interaction with Crooks reveals the complexity of racial prejudice during the ranch life. Like many of the men on the characters in the story, Crooks admits to being very lonely. “This…

Relationship between Humans and Nature

The relationship between humans and nature is an important topic in which many people contribute ideas to and have done studies on. It is important for people to see that nature is a necessity and that we are responsible for protecting it. In essays and an article, John Steinbeck, Lynn White, Peter Kahn, Rachel Severson, and Jolina Ruckert discuss their beliefs and information they have found to be true about humans and nature living together. In the article “Americans and the Land”, John Steinbeck talks about the American settlers’ impact on the land. He states that the relationship between humans and nature used to be one of settlers living with or against nature, but has over time come to humans…

The Impossibility of the American Dream

America has come to represent ideals such as wealth, happiness, and freedom. Immigrants travel to America in search of the American Dream, constructed of these hopes, although the majority of foreigners and natives alike never discover it. Various American novelists comprehend this unachievable desire and explore its depths in books that have now become classics. Among these novels are John Steinbeck’s _Of Mice and Men_ and the same author’s _The Grapes of Wrath._ In the first, two men with the names Lennie and George roam California in the 1930’s, hunting for ranches to work on. However, Lennie is mentally ill and always provokes trouble, driving the two companions to become fugitives until the next rural occupation. The American Dream motivates…

“East of Eden” by John Steinbeck

The prosecution will begin by establishing the character of the defendant, and further prove that the criminal acts committed by Ms. Catherine Ames were not random, but rather a part of a cynical mindset that deliberately caused harm. Catherine Ames was without a doubt, a stunning work of beauty with the power to make all heads turn everywhere she went. She have lovely gold hair, big hazel eyes, pointy small chin along with a delicate nose, and high cheekbones giving her a heart shaped face. She was an adorable child that became an irresistible woman with the power to make all man fall head over heels. With a timid smile and a soft spoken voice, this appears to be the…

The American Dream as Shown in The Novels

America: a land of endless wealth, and the dream; a dream of endless opportunity, is not depicted as such in the books The Grapes of Wrath and The Great Gatsby. The Dream is instead portrayed as hypocritical in the assumption that spiritual satisfaction is always accompanied material gain. In The Great Gatsby America is shown as a land of dreams that is undeniably corrupted by materialism to such a degree that even the image of god (the blue eyes of Dr. Eckleburg be) was looking “out… from a pair of enormous yellow spectacles” (Fitzgerald 23) (the yellow being a symbol of materialism). Following the theory that yellow is symbolic for the corruption of wealth. It could be hypothesized that Daisy…

America’s Vision

Fame, wealth, freedom, and success. Every person desires a life where riches, glory, or freedom surround them. Numerous people consider this dream the American dream, however, is it truly possible to achieve? Even those various immigrants who travel a great distance to come to America to live their own American dream shortly become intemperate people. The idea of the American dream is not attainable because people in general are exceedingly paradoxical and are constantly left yearning for more in a variety of ways. In the heartfelt story “America and Americans, Is the American Dream Even Possible,” by John Steinbeck, he wrote, “One of the generalities often noted about the Americans is that we are restless, a dissatisfied, a searching people”…

John Steinbeck “Of Mice and Men” Character Analysis

When all of the ranch hands went into town, Lennie, Crooks, Candy, and Curley’s wife were left behind. This was due to discrimination and prejudice. While the ranch hands were in town, the true similarities among the others really come out. One can see that they are left out and secluded due the fact that each one of them has either a physical or mental disability, or are considered trouble. In John Steinbeck’s novel, Lennie Small is a mentally handicapped man who traveled with George Milton. George had to speak for Lennie and do a lot of babysitting and thinking for him also. Crooks, the Negro stablebuck, had been injured when a horse kicked him. He had a hard time…

Lennie and George in Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Lennie and George are considerably different from the other ranch workers mainly unlike the workers who are all shown to be lonely, George and Lennie have each other. They relay on each other and their dreams together. There is a bond of trust and friendship between the two main characters which is tragically highlighted in the closing lines of the novel. The novel ‘Of Mice and Men’ by John Steinbeck is set in the early 1930’s following the collapse of the New York wall street market known as the depression years. In this time there was heavy unemployment; migrant workers from all over America came to California where the novel is set in the Salinas valley in search of prospects…

Qualifications of a Hero

“With great power there must also come great responsibility.” These words from Peter Parker’s uncle, along with spiders attributes, allow Peter to defeat the Green Goblin and successfully to become the hero of the story, Spiderman. Traditionally, characters who carry attributes such as strength and distinguished super-natural powers/abilities and are successful in the end are automatically known as the heroes of the stories. However, what requirements does a character literally need to be an absolute hero? In most novels today, heroes do not often hold such traditional qualities. Many have to put in effort, and pay the price to undergo this honour. In some instances, they may not even be appreciated as the heroes. Within those novels, we can identify…

John Steinbeck’s use of Realism

John Ernst Steinbeck has written many award winning novels, some of which has even been produced as plays that captured audiences everywhere. Steinbeck wrote about real life experiences using realism, characterization, and dreams to emphasize his points and make an impact on his readers in order to reform or change society. The realism used in Steinbeck’s works is not only effective in informing the reader of circumstances that should be changed, but this nineteenth century literary style also creates great feelings of empathy toward the characters and their dreams. Steinbeck used realism to convey his points for a purpose, and his main purpose was that he wanted something to be made known to the public. Of Mice and Men and…

John Steinbeck’s “The pearl”

John Steinbeck’s The Pearl is a tale of a poor Indian family who stumbles upon the greatest pearl in the world. Headed by a man named Kino and his supporting wife Juana, they both are determined to live a wealthy life no matter what the cost. Although the story is fictional, it is based on the unpleasant truths of life as we know it. Steinbeck reveals an array of irony like no other: Starting with Kino finding the pearl of the world, the pearl buyers not to buy the magnificent pearl, and ending with the evil that the pearl brought upon the characters. Kino and Juana woke on a gloomy morning after a tragic accident where their baby, Coyotito, was…

‘Of Mice and Men’ by John Steinbeck

All the characters at one point in the book express their dreams, Curleys wife, Lennie, George, Candy all have dreams. The novel ‘Of Mice and Men’ by John Steinbeck is set in the Salinas valley, California. During the collapse of the New York Wall Street market known as the depression years, hoards of migrant worker came to California from parts of America in search of work. The ranch itself is a microcosm of the society and lifestyle of migrant workers black and white in that time, the writer includes life of the black people and attitudes towards them we gain insight of life for black people in America the time. The same applies to Curleys wife, how women where seen…

“The Pearl” by John Steinbeck

Kino, the main character in the novel “The Pearl” is an example of a common man faced with the daily concerns and dangers of living in poverty. From the start to the end of the novel Kino develops drastically. At the beginning of the novel he is shown to be a kind and loyal husband but as the story continues he becomes an ‘animal,’ a man whom is driven by greed and willing do anything for money. When the story begins, Kino is a man perfectly content with his situation despite the lack of material possessions; he wants nothing more than to be able to support his family. After a scorpion stings Coyotito, Kino’s only child, he prays that he…