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Grapes of Wrath. Recap & Wrap Up. Synthesis Paragraphs. I scanned and posted some synthesis paragraphs focusing on 22-26 on my website. Chapter 29: Will They Break?.

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Grapes of wrath

Grapes of Wrath

Recap & Wrap Up

Synthesis paragraphs
Synthesis Paragraphs

  • I scanned and posted some synthesis paragraphs focusing on 22-26 on my website

Chapter 29 will they break
Chapter 29: Will They Break?

  • What is the significance and effects of the torrential rains and floods? Do people get help from the government? What happens? What are people forced to do?

  • Look at the last two paragraphs of this chapter, how do they connect to the earlier part of the book? What can you infer will happen to the migrants? Use a quote

Last chapter
Last Chapter

  • This chapter is sometimes a rough one for students. The last scene is awkward, but a mature eye can see why Steinbeck does this. In fact, his publishers said he had to change it as it made readers uncomfortable and was obscene and he told them to shove off, stressing that the plight of the migrants is what is unacceptable….

    Let’s break it down…

    • Why is the man starving?

    • If Rose of Sharon does not feed the man, what will happen?

  • So…deciding to be selfless and help others often requires a serious break from our comfort zones. It is a sacrifice, but one that can save another. Has an otherwise selfish character, Rose of Sharon, finally learned the value of helping others……does that mean we all can?

  • Are we to assume the Joads will be okay? Why?

  • Why isn’t there a nice finality to the novel?

Gow animation
GOW Animation

  • Student final project from last year from a non-MAP student. It is an animated video combining animated art from GOW and the song’s content, using the song to drive the emotions

  • She created this frame by frame, it is her own art, and she learned the software herself

  • Song is called “Dust Bowl Dance” by Mumford and Sons. Song is certainly based on GOW.

  • Thoughts?


Legacy through music
Legacy Through Music

  • In 1940, Woody Guthrie recorded a ballad called "Tom Joad".

  • The Norwegian composer GeirrTveitt composed a cantata for mezzo-soprano and orchestra called "The Turtle", using an excerpt from The Grapes of Wrath.

  • Kris Kristofferson's 1981 single "Here Comes That Rainbow Again" is based on a scene from the book.

  • On Pink Floyd's 1987 album A Momentary Lapse of Reason, the opening lines for the song "Sorrow" are paraphrased from the beginning of a chapter in The Grapes of Wrath: "Sweet smell of a great sorrow lies over the land.”

  • In 1991, the English progressive rock band Camel recorded an album Dust and Dreams inspired by the novel.

  • In 1995, Bruce Springsteen recorded his song "The Ghost of Tom Joad" on the album of the same name. The lyric is set in contemporary times, but the third verse quotes Tom's famous "wherever there's a ..." lines. The song was later recorded by Rage Against The Machine

So what happened to the migrants
So what happened to the migrants?

A revised version of this essay appeared as  “The Dust Bowl Migration” in Poverty in the United States: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, and Policy, eds. Gwendolyn Mink and Alice O’Connor (Santa Barbara: ABC-Clio, 2004)

Things got worse
Things got worse…

  •   Until 1941 states felt free to restrict interstate mobility, focusing that power, when they used it, on the poor.

  • California had been especially hostile to poor newcomers. In 1936, the Los Angeles police department established a border patrol, dubbed the "Bum Blockade," at major road and rail crossings for the purpose of turning back would-be visitors who lacked obvious means of support.

  • California's Indigent Act, passed in 1933, made it a crime to bring indigent persons into the state.

  • In 1939 the district attorneys of several of the counties most affected by the Dust Bowl influx began using the law in a very public manner. More than two dozen people were indicted, tried, and convicted. Their crime: helping their relatives move to California from Oklahoma and nearby states.

  • The prosecutions were challenged by the ACLU which pushed the issue all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1941 the court issued a landmark decision (Edwards v. California) ruling that states had no right to restrict interstate migration by poor people or any other Americans.

Then things got better
Then things got better…

  •      Fortunately the poverty that drew the artists was much less permanent. Even as The Grapes of Wrath was flying off bookshelves in 1939, conditions were beginning to improve in rural California thanks first to federal aid programs (in part driven by Congress because of GOW) and then to the World War II defense boom that pulled many of the migrants out of the fields and raised wages for those remaining.

  • Still, incomes for many former Oklahomans, Arkansans, and Texans would remain low for some time. As late as the 1970s poverty experts in the San Joaquin Valley talked about "Okies" as a disadvantaged population and could point to poverty and welfare use rates that exceeded norms for other whites.

  • But the bigger story was the climb up from poverty that most families experienced in the decades after the Depression. Taking advantage of the wide open job markets for white male workers that characterized the war and post war eras, the Dust Bowl migrants and their children made steady, if unspectacular, progress up the economic ladder.

Formal unions
Formal Unions

  • The United Farm Workers of America (UFWA) is a labor union created from the merging of two groups, the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC) and the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) led by Cesar Chavez.

  • By uniting together the workers are able to negotiate wage minimums, insurance, and contracts.

  • The NFWA and the AWOC, recognizing their common goals and methods, and realizing the strengths of coalition formation, jointly formed the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee on August 22, 1966.[1] This organization was accepted into the AFL/CLO in 1972 and changed its name to the United Farm workers Union.[2]

Is wealth distribution more equal now
Is wealth distribution more equal now?

  • The 1930s was 80 years ago, America is much more “equal” now, right? We will watch this Monday.


For monday 4 22
For Monday 4/22

  • Poetry Creative Tasks

  • Bring GOW (with flags on key quotes as they pertain to the Socratic Qs), GOW question sheet, your journal, all pwpts and supplemental handouts for debate prep. Really try not to miss this day, as it will make the debate much harder for you, and if you do miss please email me so I can give you the details you need for the debate the following class period

  • Rest and Relax over break!