Jim Casy: An Unlikely American Transcendentalist
In John Steinbeck's novel The Grapes of Wrath, Jim Casy is depicted as a philosophical, Christ-like teacher who triumphs over the evils of society. A literal interpretation of Emerson's philosophy gave birth to Casy's new doctrine of Love. As he evolves from a preacher of the old to a practitioner of the new, some believe that Jim Casy demonstrates remarkable similarities to Jesus Christ. These similarities are impressed upon not only Tom Joad, but also an entire group of oppressed workers that had little hope of a better life.
Ninety-three years before Jim Casy, Ralph Waldo Emerson lef…
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