Black Boy vs Grapes of Wrath

Essay by Groovy_chickHigh School, 10th grade June 2002

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Even though the books of Black Boy and Grapes of Wrath gave a vivid picture of the past American life to the readers regarding the socio-economic bigotry. Both books are similar in focusing the social and economic discrimination in the family setting. On Grapes of Wrath the California prejudice against the immigrants. Prejudice was a strong word, which leaves a bitter taste in the mouth. It is the prejudice against the migrant workers by the established financially Californians. Steinbeck provides four clear examples of prejudice; the man whose children died of starvation, the fishing story, the California police officer and the history of Californians. The best picture to describe was on the way to California, the Joad's encountered some people who have been in California and were returning. One of the encounter was with a ragged man with sunburned faced, described on page 242. The ragged man had children that died because wages were too low and work was scarce to afford food to his children and wife.

His story was one of pain and despair. The evidence of cruelty and inhumane treatment which resulted from the California farmers prejudiced towards the migrant workers.

With Wright's Black Boy, the prejudice was the racial issue, it is white taking advantage of the blacks. As an example, after Richard sees a "black" boy whipped by a "white" man, he asks his mother why did the incident happen. His mother says, "The white man did not whip the "black" boy...He beat the "black" boy," (31). This quote showed racism, which is one way of society keeping Richard Wright and all other blacks in the South down. Another example was at the railroad station with his mother, as they were waiting for the train, he saw something he never saw before,