biographies – j. steinbeck

On May 7th 1939 John Steinbeck ( 1902-1968) was awarded (fu conferito) the Pulitzer Prize for The Grapes of Wrath. The novel is about a family, the Joads, compelled (obbligata) by draught and depression to leave their farm in Oklahoma for California. They are accompanied by Jim Casey, a former preacher, who has lost his faith after witnessing (aver visto coi propri occhi) so many wrongs (torti) and sufferings. Casey becomes increasingly involved (sempre più coinvolto) as a strike organizer (organizzare sciperi) and a labour leader and is killed by the authorities. Tom, the eldest son of the Joad family is compelled (obbligato) to run away after attacking a policeman. He will eventually decide to become a labour agitator. The novel reflects the growing (crescent) economic and social unease after the depression of the late 1920s; in fact in the new land the Joads find nothing but hostility, poor wages (paghe basse) and exploitation (sfruttamento). Steinbeck also received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962 “for his realistic and imaginative writings, combining as they do sympathetic humour and keen social perception”.

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