The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

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How is The Grapes of Wrath relevant to readers today? How has the novel influenced American society and culture as we know it?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The previous post was well directed.  I would say that Steinbeck’s work is relevant to the modern setting because it articulates the condition of being poor.  In a nation such as America, poverty is not something readily associated with its conception.  As a nation, Americans truly embrace the concept of being “middle class”  in large part because there is no institutionalized caste system, class configuration, or any other external distinction which locks people into the roles of having to occupy the lowest rungs of society.  This preoccupation with being “middle class” is one where the belief of upward mobility has a tendency to silence the realities of those who are poor, immersed in poverty.  The faith in this opportunity ideology creates a situation where there is a tendency to not listen to the voices of those who have failed or been denied their share of the economic pie.  I feel that it is in this void where Steinbeck’s work walks. There is a reality that is...

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clairewait eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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