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From “I” to “We”

  • Date Submitted: 02/14/2012 06:13 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 63.2 
  • Words: 286
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From “I” to “We”
At the forefront of John Steinbeck’s novel, The Grapes of Wrath tells the tale of a family’s migration west. Within this journey is a larger one though, encompassing not only the Joads, but countless of other families on the same course for survival. It is the “I” to “We” movement, or how individuals transform the needs of self-interest into a collective power to thwart the greed and selfishness that oppresses them. Only by working together will the collection of migrant families have the ability to overcome their hardships.
The first change from “I” to “We” begins along the Joads’ passage to California, as they meet another family headed in the same direction, the Wilsons. The two families soon realize their burdens could be eased by travelling together. Tom reasons that “some of us folks could ride with them an’ take some a their light stuff in the truck. An me an’ Al both know about a car, so we could keep their car a-rollin’” (202). This is a simple decision for the Joads, by joining forces both families benefit. Unknowingly though, they contribute to a larger series of acts that spread across the country, made by people who are brought together by adversity. By sharing resources, these intermingled groups of people are able to endure what they otherwise could not have.   For this reason, both the Joads and the Wilsons will find the support and strength that they lack on their own in their partnership.
Even as the Joads separate from the Wilsons, they do not leave behind their gratitude for actions of support. When the family makes their way to a government camp of migrant workers,

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