(An Analysis of Grandpa Joad of Grapes of Wrath)
John Steinbeck once stated: “If he needs a million acres to make him feel rich, seems to me he needs it 'cause he feels awful poor inside hisself, and if he's poor in hisself, there ain't no million acres gonna make him feel rich, an' maybe he's disappointed that nothin' he can do 'll make him feel rich.” The classic text Grapes of Wrath contains several characters with a considerable amount of depth. Characters like Tom and Ma Joad are usually celebrated for their symbolism and dialogue. I feel as though Grandpa Joad is a highly underrated character in Steinbeck’s text Grapes of Wrath.
Tom Joad’s grandfather has a deep appreciation for the land he lives on. Individuals that grew up in the times of the Great Depression often find themselves holding onto anything that has their name to it. Grandpa says in the scene where his farm is being taken away: “It's my dirt! Eh-heh! No good, but it's - it's mine, all mine.” Grandpa does not care that the land is no longer fertile. All he cares about is the sentimentality of his land. Being the founding patriarch of the Joad farm, he undoubtedly has become attached to his home. In a time period where most individuals did not travel more than 30 miles away from their home, it is easy to see why Grandpa says he wishes to give up the fight. He begs and pleads for the family to leave him there to die on his once property. He truly appreciates what the lad had to offer to raise him, and wished to leave his world at the same place he was brought into it.
Although grandpa Joad passes away early in their voyage, he has very clever dialogue and a spit-fire attitude. From the initial moments of Tom Joad returning from prison, his grandfather immediately makes witty remarks as to how he got out of his confinement. By asking Tom if he was back because he escaped, audiences quickly learn that either Tom has a somewhat cunning side to himself or...