“The Grapes of Wrath: In Times of Despair”
If one was to examine the three characters, Tom, Ma, and Pa Joad from John Steinback’s The Grapes of Wrath. How would we figure out what astrological signs they were born under, as taken from their actions and attitudes in the novel? What certain qualities do they possess, that make them fit there Zodiac sign?
Tom Joad, a hard stubborn man, who has served time in prison for murder. He has come back home to find his family falling apart. At the head there is Pa Joad, who has been trying to keep the family stable. He is failing fast. There seems to be no answer to the drought which has killed the land they farm. So they take to the road. Hoping there will be a new life and work in the west. The whole faimly packs their belongings, and leaves the place they have called home, behind them. Along the way to the west, they have many misfortunes. They still had more to come. Just one of the many families, caught in times of despair. They are held together by, Tom the Lion, Ma the bull, andPa
who holds the scales of balance.
I chose Leo, the lion for Tom. The lion is an icon of strength. I think his character represents the strength and knowledge. Shown through his psyichal fights and hard crop work in the novel. Also because he had the strength to push on for his family. To keep goin through the hardest times, and overcome his obstacles. He also represents knowledge from his experiences with fixing the truck, and keeping things under control at the government camps. Another example of personal and mental strength, as well as knowledge is the courage it took to leave his family behind at the boxcar farm. He knew he had to leave his family behind for the better of the whole group.
Ma Joad represents Taurus, the bull. The bull symbolizes stability. As shown through Ma’s actions and involvment in the novel. There comes a time when, Pa Joad falls into the hopelessness of the whole situtation. At that time Ma steps into the breach and takes over. She must assume the posistion of head, and keep her family going. Keep it together. She takes on the responsibility of running the family, feeding the family, working in the fields for money, and keeping it stable. To overcome all this, one would have to be stable. One would have to have the heart of a bull.
Pa Joad would be a Libra, the one who holds the scales.of balance. The Libra symbolizes balance. This is the element Pa brings to the family. After the tragic loss of the grandfather, and grandmother someone had to be at the head. Pa filled that posistion. Even though Noah ran off, Pa was still there. Even in times of despair, Pa was still there. Ma ran the family, but Pa was the head. Which made them a family. A father, a mother, and children. With out Pa there would have been no male/female balance. There would have been no family. Without family what purpose did they have to survive?
In conclusion, its not your Zodiac sign that determines your qualities. Your heart determines your qualities and defines who you are. But one was to categorize these characters actions into Zodiac groups. These characters fit those said signs, Tom who is strong like the lion, Ma with the heart of a bull, and Pa who holds the scales of balance.