The Grapes of Wrath Characters

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Jim Casy accompanies the Joad family on their journey from Oklahoma to California. He is a former preacher who has given up both Christian fundamentalism and sexuality, and is ready for a new life dedicated to helping people like the Joads. He is honest, compassionate, and courageous. Casy's new "religion" is based on love and a belief in each person's soul as well as an all-inclusive soul, the "Holy Spirit" of humanity. As critics have noted, these non-secular views of humanity can be traced to the transcendentalist philosophy of Walt Whitman and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Casy is a new convert to this transcendentalism.

Casy's initials (J. C.) have been cited as evidence that his character is a symbol of Jesus Christ. Moreover, his words and actions in the novel parallel those of Jesus Christ. For instance, he takes the blame for the deputy's beating at the Hooverville...

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This section contains 889 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Grapes of Wrath Study Guide
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The Grapes of Wrath from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.