Theme Of Alienation In The Grapes Of Wrath

708 WordsSep 5, 20173 Pages
In the novel, The Grapes of Wrath, Uncle John's alienation from his family and society reveal surrounding moral values. As the family travels across the states, Uncle John alienates himself from his family and conflicts with the principle of greatest happiness. John believes the will of God has caused the family to be under a series unfortunate events due to an incident in his past. In chapter 18, Uncle John ask Casy about sin. He continues on, in the rest of the novel contemplating the extents to which one has committed sin."' I got to give that a goin'-over,' said Uncle John, and he rolled on his back and lay with his knees pulled up (225)." To expand, Uncle John is haunted by his past and believes that he has committed such a horrible…show more content…
Then he crept into houses and left gum under the pillows; then he cut wood and took no pay (96)." To show, John had dedicated his life in an act to compensate for what he believed he had done wrong. He tried to contribute to society but, in the end he had ended up cutting himself off from the people around him. It was said that, “Nearly all the time the barrier of loneliness cut Uncle John off from people and from appetite (96)." Even though John had tried to compensate for his sins he has still doubted himself when he was brought into being able to find happiness or at least, stability. When things were becoming good, John still had his intrusive thoughts fill his mind. He had asked Casy," You think it was a sin to let my wife die like that? (225)." Casy had given John an answer he was not looking for, which lead him to drink for when the times changed. He stated, “I can get an’ drunk for two dollars. I don’ want no sin of waste on me. I'll send whatever I got. Always do (269)." This shows how John battled the principle of greatest happiness because he believed that in the will of god a sin must be paid for, for the rest of someone's life and the more severe the sin is, the bigger the compensation must be. To conclude, Uncle John alienates himself from his family due to his constant feeling of powerlessness. He believed that the will of God is for him to compensate for the biggest sin the family could he caused and the only reason to
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