ettingThe Grapes of Wrath: Description Al Joad and the SettingAl Joad is a fairly skinny guy of medium built who starts out being acocky, self-conceited character. His only justifiable reason for acting cockyis that his brother, Tom, killed a man and went to jail. Al respects his brotherand thinks of him as a man for having killed another man. The fact of thematter is that Tom was only acting in self defense. After a man came after Tomwith a knife, Tom hit him over the head with a shovel, and killing him in theprocess.
Al would receive complements all over town from people who recognizehim and being the brother of a man that was a killer. As soon as Tom Joadcomes home from prison, Al is a changed person. He is no longer cocky and healmost resents his brother coming home so soon.
As the Joad family is forced toleave their home land and travel to California, Al takes on a greatresponsibility. His job is to drive the family and take complete care of thetruck that they are driving. Al takes his job very seriously and gets upset whenanything happens to the car. Emotionally, I would say Al has become very strongthroughout the novel. He starts out pretty depend on the “glory” of his brother,but he takes his responsibilities seriously. I see Al as being a crucialcharacter later in the novel. He is the kind of person that needs motivationfrom the start, but once he gets going, he won’t stop.
Setting DescriptionOklahoma could best be described as one large dustbowl. All rain hasceased to fall. The dry wind wisps through the air and gathers dirt. If youlisten closely enough, it sounds as though there are people moaning wheneverwind is present.
The heat is so humid that any source of water is dried up, andthe plants wither away. All of the corn crops are gone as well as all othercrops. The dirt is like sand; it has no moisture or fertilization. It isgrainy and hard as though no water has ever moistened it. Day after day,storm clouds can be seen lingering overhead.
You could swear it would rain anyminute, but it never does. The humidity only increases and the fine dustparticles become part of the air; which only makes things worse. Not only is itunbearably hot, but it is terribly difficult to breathe. Life cannot exist insuch unbearable conditions. For this reason, life moves on and leaves behindthe giant dustbowl.