Abuse Of Power In The Grapes Of Wrath

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The abuse of power in order to make a profit is a prominent theme today in current events and throughout the novel The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. Today, people in positions of power use that power to take advantage of their workers and customers in order to benefit themselves. In The Grapes of Wrath, most of the Joads’ problems stem from people using the power they have to deceive them. Economic abuse of power is not only prevalent today, but is also prevalent in The Grapes of Wrath as shown through the bank owners, salesmen, brokers, and the landowners. During the Great Depression, the bank frequently took over lands and kicked people out of their homes. This “monster” bank caused many people to move out west to California, leaving them with nothing. Towards the beginning of The Grapes of Wrath, the new owners of the land who were sent by the bank are seen conversing with the tenant men—the previous owners of the land, about how the land is dying. The owners then proceeded to kick the tenants off the land. “The bank, the fifty-thousand-acre owner can't be responsible. You're on land that isn't yours” (Steinbeck 34). As the land is going to be plowed over with a tractor “The man in the iron seat” (35), or the tractor driver, is found out to be a friend of the tenants. His response when asked why he would turn against his fellow farmers is, “Times are changed don't you know…Get your three dollars a day, feed your kids” (37). This shows that when given the
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