On Reading The Grapes of Wrath

Susan Shillinglaw - Author

ePub eBook | $9.99 | add to cart | view cart
ISBN 9780698146099 | 224 pages | 19 Feb 2014 | Penguin | 18 - AND UP
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Todays foremost Steinbeck scholar writes an extended meditation on the influence of The Grapes of Wrath, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of its first publication

In this compelling biography of a book, Susan Shillinglaw delves into John Steinbecks classic to explore the cultural, social, political, scientific, and creative impact of The Grapes of Wrath upon first publication, as well as its enduring legacy. First published in April 1939, Steinbecks National Book Awardwinning epic of the Great Depression chronicles the Dust Bowl migration of the 1930s and the story of one Oklahoma farm family, the Joads, driven from their homestead and forced to travel west to the promised land of California. The story of their struggle remains eerily relevant in todays America and stands as a portrait of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, in the souls of the people.

“[Shillinglaw is] a scintillating guide. Shillinglaw explores the novel’s layers of meaning, richly mining cultural context, history, and social thought, as well as Steinbeck’s own background, work process, and politics. The captivating result resembles an extended college lecture series, appealingly combining personal reflections and a conversational tone with accessible scholarship.”
—Publisher's Weekly (Book of the Week Selection)

"Shillinglaw provides, moreover, a richly detailed account of the growth of The Grapes of Wrath...This book will appeal to serious students of Steinbeck’s work, particularly those interested in his connection to ecology and the environmental movement."
—Library Journal

"A concise yet penetrating study of the genesis of the book and its interlocking themes...[Shillinglaw is] an astute critic."

"Nobody who’s ever managed to enjoy The Grapes of Wrath should miss this powerfully memorable little study of it."
—Open Letters Monthly
"Longtime Steinbeck fans and first-time readers alike will find much to enrich their understanding of The Grapes of Wrath in Shillinglaw's book."
—Tampa Bay times

"For those familiar with the novel, try reading this book and then return for a rereading of Steinbeck’s classic. You will find it a much more rewarding experience after you have pondered the contents of Shillinglaw’s book."
—The Salinas Californian


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