Grapes of Wrath Reflection

Darin Engquist
Eng102 Section: 11084
Tue-Thurs 10-11:15a.m.
February 19, 2015
Classics Essay
My Reflection of The Grapes of Wrath
In this classic John Steinbeck novel I will discuss one of the interconnected themes that intrigued me the most as a reader. Steinbeck seems to want the reader to understand that life and humanity is a journey. With that journey comes good times, bad times, hardships, and enjoyment, but no matter what, life continues to move ahead. Along with life’s ever ending journey and forward motion also comes change.
In the very beginning of the novel we see two journeys taking place. Tom Joad’s journey from prison back home, and the journey of the turtle.
Tom encounters changes in his journey to get home. The challenge of getting a ride, and then the challenge of having to walk. Tom had a choice to not go anywhere, but it’s important to see, that in order for Tom to reach his goal of going home, he would have to deal with things outside of his control. Things he might not want to do, but would have to do, in order to reach his goal of getting home. It relates to humanity as a whole. If you set a goal, there may be challenges or obstacles outside of one’s control, but these will have to be overcome to achieve success in reaching the goal.
I think the journey of the turtle is used as a good analogy of the types of obstacles and challenges, that people might face when journeying through life. The turtle was nearly hit by a car, and was hit by a truck. The turtle somehow managed to survive through these circumstances outside of his control. Tom picking the turtle up also reflected to me the importance of kinship to help each other through life’s journey.
These two journeys seem to set the foundation for the trip to California. The Joad’s, and other families that were losing their way of life, had a goal to get to California. They had heard there was work to be had, but they were also aware of the difficulties of traveling that far….