The cast of the chapters included the chairman of the camp committee, Ezra Huston, Rose of Sharon, Tom, Ma, Willie, Connie, John, the men paid in attempt to start a riot, and the man who shares his story about the men who were hired for cheap labor and ran out of town. In these chapters, the camp dance was to happen at night. There was word of people starting riots to allow the government an excuse to shut down the camps. Ezra hired several men to watch for these instigators and try to contain them should anything be attempted. Three men were unsuccessful in trying to start a riot confessing to the fact that they were paid handsomely to do so. There was a man that told a story of travelers who were hired for cheap labor and started a union. They were soon run out of town by the townspeople after the start of the union. In California, migrants and farmers were struggling against the land owners who monopolized the farming industry. Everyone was growing impatient for salvation.
One theme I noticed was the need for family. With that I mean a group of people who are willing to get each other’s backs even if it means consequence. We see that the camp has a committee devoted to making sure that everything in the camp itself is run smoothly with the cooperation of everyone by having everyone chip in and having people look out at the dances as if their own form of security. You can see that people do care and the fact that they are having a dance for the camp shows a great sense of unity in that they still have hope in each other. Another theme that is probably going to be popular is hope. These themes do have similarities, but you can see the hope that everyone has at the dance at night by enjoying themselves and just getting away from all of the hardships for a bit and the migrants and farmers in California are all struggling, but are not quite completely giving up. The people obviously still have hope for something better if they are still working because that is what it is going to take to get to something better. Working that is.
One question I had was as to how people can be so terrible as to hire others to start a riot for an excuse to take away all hope a group of struggling humans had? Another question I had was, why is that the local farmers in California could not create their own unions? Were they really that afraid to stand up to the monopoly? I mean it’s not like they had anything else to lose.
One passage I found was on page 337 where Ma told her daughter, “’You always was a good girl. I’ll take care a you. Don’t you fret’”. Again with this we see that people are looking out for each other. Another passage I found interesting was on page 349 where it says, “In the souls of the people the grapes of wrath are filling and growing heavy, growing heavy for the vintage”. This quote shows the desperation coming from the farmers and that something really needs to be done before all hope is lost.
A comparison I made was when the dance was going on, you could see that there was a lot of hope kind of like we saw earlier when grandpa died and the family still kept moving on in hopes of something better and in the world we see hope with multibillion fundraising in hopes of cures for diseases like cancer and we see the stories of those who have been affected by it. A contrast I noticed was with the government trying to buy off people to instigate riots to get an excuse to shut down the camp. I contrasted this to the fact that the government advertised themselves earlier in the book as doing many things to help the nation rebuild and grow, but are trying to make it impossible for some in doing so. Today we see some corruption with the lies and the promises that rarely kept in our government.