JOHN STEINBECK. BY: Mariah Anastasia and Michael. Books: Of Mice and Men Grapes of Wrath and East of Eden. BIOGRAPHY. John Steinbeck 1902-1968. He was born in Salinas, California. He went to Stanford University but didn’t graduate
Of Mice and Men
Grapes of Wrath and
East of Eden
The Grapes of Wrath
Time and Place Written: Late May to Late October, 1938 in Los Gatos, California
Published: April 14th, 1939
The Trask Family
Cyrus Trask - the father of Adam and Charles. He also lies about his war storys and truthfully he was shot with in the first hour of war
Mrs. Trask - The first wife of Cyrus Trask and the mother of Adam. When cyrus cheats on her with a prostitute during the war she commits suicide
Alice Trask - Cyrus’s second wife and the mother of Charles. She never really shows emotion during the book Adam Trask - The son of Cyrus Trask and the father of Aron and Cal. Adam is a goodhearted but somewhat impractical man he ends up falling in love with the most evil women in the book
Charles Trask - The son of Cyrus Trask and the half-brother of Adam. Charles is a violent, manipulative man who works on his father’s farm he fills canes part in the novel
Aron Trask - The son of Adam and Cathy and the twin brother of Cal. Joins the army after his brothers lies which then he dies in acction (the abel)
Caleb Trask - The son of Adam and Cathy and the twin brother of Aron. He plays canes role in the second generation of the book indirectly killing Aron (the Abel)
The Hamilton Family
Samuel Hamilton - The patriarch of the Hamilton family.
Liza Hamilton - Samuel’s wife and the mother of their nine children. The tiny Liza is a strict, moral woman George Hamilton - The oldest son of Samuel and Liza.
Will Hamilton - The second son of Samuel and Liza. He becomes very weathy
Tom Hamilton - The third son of Samuel and Liza. He kills his sister on accident which then he kills himself out of grief
Joe Hamilton - The youngest son of Samuel and Liza. Joe, a dreamer and academic by nature,
Lizzie Hamilton - The eldest daughter of Samuel and Liza. Lizzie, a very minor character, essentially leaves the Hamilton family and chooses instead to associate herself with her husband’s family.
Una Hamilton - The second daughter of Samuel and Liza. She dies after she moves into her husbands house Her death crushes Samuel and ages him considerably.
Dessie Hamilton - The third daughter of Samuel and Liza. Dessie, who runs a dressmaking shop in Salinas, is not beautiful but has a lovely personality that makes everyone enjoy her company. She dies when Tom gives her salts to soothe her stomach, accidentally aggravating her illness.
Olive Hamilton - The fourth daughter of Samuel and Liza. Olive becomes a teacher, which makes her family proud. She is the mother of the narrator of the novel (and indeed, in real life, the mother of John Steinbeck).
Mollie Hamilton - The youngest daughter of Samuel and Liza. Mollie is the lovely one, the sweetheart of the family. She marries and moves to an apartment in San Francisco.
Cathy Ames - A moral monster, the most evil character in the novel. As a young girl, she murders her parents by arson and then commences a life of prostitution. She later marries and then shoots Adam Trask, abandoning her newborn twin sons in order to return to prostitution. After murdering the brothel owner, Faye, Cathy becomes the madam of the brothel, using drugs to control and manipulate her whores. She takes photographs of powerful men involved in sex acts in order to blackmail them. Aron’s discovery that Cathy is his mother shatters him and spurs the chain of events that leads to his death. Cathy represents Eve in the Cain and Abel story of the novel, introducing sin and evil into the world. She commits suicide after enduring Aron’s response to her.
Lee - Adam Trask’s dutiful cook and housekeeper,
Abra Bacon - The daughter of the corrupt county supervisor in Salinas
Mr. Edwards - A man who runs a prostitution ring throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut. he beats her nearly to death, and she crawls away to the nearest farm—that owned by Charles and Adam Trask.
Faye - The madam at the Salinas whorehouse where Cathy works as a prostitute. Cathy poisons Faye gradually, and after Faye finally dies, takes over the brothel.
Ethel - A prostitute at Faye’s brothel who obtains proof that Cathy murdered Faye. Ethel tries to blackmail Cathy for a payment of $100 each month but is later discovered to have drowned.
Joe Valery - An escaped convict who is employed as a bouncer at Cathy’s brothel.
The narrator tells the story in the third person switching the view over MANY diff charicters through out the book.
John Steinbeck writes a great book sibling rivalry as he examines what we become vs. what we may become. The Biblical tale of Cain and Abel sets the tone as we are introduced to two sets of brothers. Each tries to win the love of his father in different ways. The story of why one brother succeeds while another feels unloved is beautifully told.
Adam Trask, from the first set of brothers, repeats his own story with his sons, the twins Aron and Caleb. The enduring themes of light vs. dark, good vs. evil, hatred vs. love, and always the free will, the ability to choose one's own destiny.
Cathy, the whore with a heart of stone, has to be one of the most evil characters in this book. She kills her parents, beds her husband's brother on her wedding night, shoots her husband and desserts her infant sons. And, all this before she turns really bad! Truly a character that is like pure evil but she keeps you interested in the book. On the other hand there are the wonderful characters of Samuel and Lee, men you will remember for their smarts, caring, and niceness. And there is Adam, a weird man until his re-birth and spectacular failure finds him caught in a web of good and evil that he struggles with.through out the whole story
I found out that John Steinbeck put himself into the novel, as Samuel Hamilton is based on his own grandfather. The entire Hamilton clan is one that represents the true "salt of the earth"