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Grapes Of Wrath Essay

1049 words - 5 pages

Glen Coco
Ms. Smaldore
English 3AP
Due Date: 10/2/12
The Human Sperit
During the Great Depression, men and women were enduring unthinkable hardships. Their drive to overcome, while relentless, was often curtailed by the mean circumstances they faced. Often losing, they fought against drought, starvation, and foreclosure. In these harsh times faith in God and religion wasn’t enough. In the days when succeeding by one’s own abilities was the American Dream, relying on God to solve one’s problems was not going to cut it. The hope that humanity could move forward as a whole sustained the country more than faith in solely God. John Steinbeck, recognizing the need for a faith founded in ...view middle of the document...

He realizes that the spirit is in people not religion. This astonishing new idea spurs a whole new spectrum of faith in which “the Holy Sperit” is” the human sperit” (24). Casy realizes that people are “holy when we [are] one thing” (81). This revelation made by Casy in the beginning of the novel is very symbolic of Jesus Christ’s own revelations about Christianity. Casy’s idea that his “little piece of soul wasn’t no good ‘less it was with the rest” shows his faith in humanity as a whole begin to develop (418). As Casy slowly absorbs this new definition of faith, he begins applying it to his life and his teachings.
While Jim journeys on with the Joads, he begins to implement some of his new ideas. Just like Jesus changed his approach to rectifying society, Casy stops trying to help mankind through religion and helps mankind directly. When not benefiting anyone else, Casy becomes very self-loathing. “I’m a-eatin’ your food an a’talin up room. An I ain’t given you nothin’” (251). Only when he is able to help others is he truly happy. Casy does this by listening to what troubles people and “purty soon [he hears] the way folks are feelin’” (250). His discovery of the what’s truly holy expands when he sees the truth in the rich who need money because they feel “awful poor inside [themselves]” (207). Very similarly to Jesus Christ, Casy solidifies his knew belief by sacrificing himself for the sake of others. When Tom hits a guard Casy quickly offers to step in arguing that, “somebody got to take the blame” (265). He truly embodies the modernized Christ figure when he drives away in the cop car with “his head up and stringy muscles of his neck prominent” (267). Casy is proud to take the place of a fellow man because he believes in fighting for the strength of society as a whole.
Before being killed, Casy attempts to unite the impoverished workers in order to overthrow the wealthy subjugators. His belief in the ability of mankind is one that not only...

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