Analysis Of Upton Sinclair 's ' The Grapes Of Wrath '

3839 Words Oct 28th, 2014 16 Pages
Contemporary society deems social class a division within a given population defined by wealth, education, and power, but the lines that divide them unceasingly deepen. Social mobility, or the movement of an individual between the stratification of societal classes, remains virtually illusory, an unattainable falsity that millions have laboriously fought for since the turn of the twentieth century. Monopolies and wage slavery remain definite and palpable, both of which contribute to immobility between social rankings, establishing an unbreakable cycle of poverty. The idyllic ethos of the American Dream, a belief that one will achieve success through hard work and opportunity, prove to be a fallacious, hollow and vague ambition that cannot be attained. Paradigms that exploit the plight of the “American worker” beginning in the early nineteen hundreds include muckraker Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle and John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. The quandaries that plague the characters of the aforementioned novels parallel that of modern day exposés, such as Class Matters, by Bill Keller, Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich, and Fast Food Nation, by Eric Schlosser, all of which harness and expose the falsehood of The American Dream as a result of wage slavery, class separation, and monopolization of major industries. The delineations that exist between the lower and upper class render the American Dream an empty, intangible delusion, unattainable to those enslaved by low wages…
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