The Grapes of Wrath: Literary Criticism & Critical Analysis


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When it was first published in 1939, John Steinbeck's, The Grapes of Wrath, was met with what kind of critical reception?

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1. In 1939, what type of reader responded *most* negatively to John Steinbeck's, The Grapes of Wrath?

2. Which theme in Steinbeck's, The Grapes of Wrath, attracted negative criticism?

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

This quiz and worksheet provides an assessment of your knowledge of the literary criticism of The Grapes of Wrath. You'll check your understanding of what the critics think of the themes in the novel as well.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

This quiz and worksheet focuses on what you know about:

  • How the critics received the book when it was first published
  • The type of reader who reacted negatively
  • The theme that received negative criticism
  • Which social class Steinbeck offers a sympathetic portrayal of

Skills Practiced

  • Knowledge application - use what you know about the literary criticisms of the book to answer questions about how the critics received this book
  • Information recall - see if you can remember the theme that received negative criticism
  • Interpreting information - verify that you read and were able to correctly interpret the theme that today's critics find relevant in the 21st century

Additional Learning

If you wish to look into this novel at a deeper level, you can review the provided lesson, The Grapes of Wrath: Literary Criticism & Critical Analysis. In this lesson, you'll find more insight into:

  • Who critics put Steinbeck on par with due to this work
  • The political debate ignited in this book
  • What Peter Munro Jack of The New York Times predicted about how the book would be received
  • Reasons for the negative criticisms
  • Who denounced Steinbeck as a Red and a Communist