Biblical Allusions In The Grapes Of Wrath

1633 WordsOct 30, 20177 Pages
John Steinbeck’s primary focus in the majority of his literary pieces is religion. The religious aspects of his stories are primarily shown through subtle connections to Biblical characters along with other hints. The most prominent piece of literature that displays religious connections is his novel The Grapes of Wrath. For the duration of the story, religion helps sustain the characters of the novel from difficult times. His novel contains numerous Biblical references that are conveyed through the characters of the Joad family along with Jim Casy; Steinbeck wants his audience to understand the plot development’s relation to religion which is shown through the character’s concern with spirituality as they endure the struggles of the Great…show more content…
Granma Joad often wants Casy to lead in prayers for their family, although Casy doesn’t really want to. Even though he has his own ideas on Christianity, Casy still respects others ideas. Following his days as a preacher, Casy spent time questioning the overall idea of Christianity, saying, “There ain’t no sin and there ain’t no virtue. There’s just stuff people do” (Steinbeck 23). The significance about Casy’s attitude towards religion is that he still respects the fact that others believe it helps them through difficult times. The point Steinbeck is making through Casy is that different people use different approaches to endure difficult times. When he was no longer a preacher, Casy still wants to help others find their spiritual connection. This is first shown through Casy preaching his ideas about life to Tom. Throughout the novel, Casy passes on his knowledge to Tom, who represents his disciple. Both characters develop as spiritual individuals throughout the novel. Peter Lisca, the author of the critical article, “The Grapes of Wrath as Fiction” backs up this point by saying, “The development of Jim Casy is similar to that of Tom. He moves from Bible-belt evangelism to social prophecy. At the beginning of the book he has already left preaching and has returned from ‘in the hills, thinkin,’ almost you might say like Jesus went into the wilderness to think His way out of a mess of troubles.” The importance of this is that Steinbeck wants the characters to have a
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