In John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath, symbolism holds a very crucial part in telling the story. Throughout the novel, many symbols are used, the most apparent of which are that of a turtle, grapes, various symbols from the bible, and a cat. The turtle is used by the author to represent hope for the novel's central characters. Grapes are used as metaphors for the anger and bitterness of the migrant families (including the Joads who are the novel's central family) that are forced to leave their land and homes. Steinbeck uses a number of symbols in the telling of his story which parallel stories from the bible. Some of the biblical symbols he uses are in his characters which have qualities similar to people from the bible, and in parts of the Joad family ˜s travels. The tractors (cats) that plow over the farmers' land and the actual animal are used a few times in the novel to represent the merciless banks. The symbols in The Grapes of Wrath help explain the themes of the novel.
The turtle is used to represent hope for the trip West. Steinbeck describes the turtle as struggling to cross a concrete highway and it almost gets across a truck hits it, flipping it over onto its back. The turtle fights to
ntercalary chapters in The Grapes of Wrath were mostly focused in on foreshadowing soon-to-come events with symbolism. John Steinbeck used symbolism often throughout the entire book. He used imagery to enhance his use of symbolism. In intercalary chapters, such as Chapter 3, he made the symbols “come to life.” An example of this imagery would be, “Sow bugs like little armadillos.” (p32) The turtle in Chapter 3 symbolizes the whole story of the struggle for the Joads’ life from beginning through their travels to California. Then, as the book progresses, Steinbeck displaces the symbolism into characters and their roles. His main proof would be in Casy, an ex-preacher, and how he shows such Christ-like actions in his life. Casy went off into nature to think for...