The Grapes of Wrath
- GRANMA JOAD
Grampa had to have a wife like Granma. She has the same vocabulary, the
same spunk, and the same madcap ways as her husband. She needs him to fight
with, just as he needs her.
Granma has one unique quality, however. She's ferociously religious. "Pu-raise
Gawd fur vittory," she yells when Tom rejoins the family. Granma has
gone to prayer meetings where she wailed and moaned for God and Jesus, damned
the devil, and shed her sins. She's thrilled to have Casy in her family,
even though he professes to have given up preaching. She forces him to say
grace at mealtime and to say a prayer over Grampa's grave.
After Grampa dies, she takes ill, never to recover. She dies on the truck
while crossing the Mojave Desert, and is buried in California.
Just as Grampa had to die when he left the land, Granma had to die without
Grampa. They were two bodies with a single soul. Granma's death also completes
the Joads' separation from their old lives.
- MULEY GRAVES
When the Oklahoma sharecroppers are evicted from their farms, Muley, the
stubborn one, refuses to budge. He's bound to the land where he was born.
He'd rather wander the countryside alone, like an "ol' graveyard ghos'"
than join the throngs going west.
Muley inspires Grampa Joad's rebellion. Grampa claims that if Muley can
stay behind and live off the land, so can he.
One of Muley's casual remarks over a campfire starts Casy thinking about
the need for people to share and to work together. Muley doesn't know it,
of course, but what he said changes Casy's life, and ultimately the lives
of Tom, Ma, and countless others.
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