In 1939, amidst a flurry of controversy one of the greatest American novels hit the book stands to a population divided over the message that the book sought to explore. The book was The Grapes of Wrath, written by the American literary master John Steinbeck.
Within the book Steinbeck discussed many issues, one of which was the labor movement in the United States. For this exploration, and his other thoughts, Steinbeck created a backlash within the conservative community that resented the fact that an author would dare to explore the darker side of American life. So infuriated where many that a plot developed to arrest Steinbeck and falsely charge him with raping an underage girl. Fortunately for Steinbeck the plot was foiled but the resentment none the less continued to boil.
Such an occurrence is unfortunately common in the States where patriotism is hijacked by the nationalistic to become a state where only certain values are championed and where problems that are inconvenient are white washed and ignored. Such is the case with the labor movement in the United States.
October 11, 2009