Chapter 14 Notes from Grapes of Wrath

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Grapes of Wrath Chapter 14

The great owners in the Western states are nervous because they sense that things are changing. They strike at big government, labor unity, and new taxes; but these things are results not causes. The causes are simple. Man has a need to live and to work for a purpose. A million men with these needs threatened will fight against it. "Fear the time when Manself will not suffer and die for a concept, for this one quality is man, distinctive in the universe." Chapter 14, pg. 192

A single family is turned off the their land, and a tractor replaces them. If mankind shared the tractor it could be loved, but when the tractor is owned by one man it is like a tank intimidating people. When this family meets another family on the highway, they share their stories of loss. "This is the zygote. For here 'I lost my land' is changed; a cell is split and from its splitting grows the thing you hate - 'We lost our land.'" Chapter 14, pg. 193 They not only share a hatred, but they share their resources. This is the beginning of the transformation of isolated individuals into a powerful, unified group with a cause. If the owners could understand this, they could preserve themselves, but "the quality of owning freezes you forever into 'I,' and cuts you off forever from the 'we.'" Chapter 14, pg. 193

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