You can find this storyboard in our article for Grapes of Wrath.

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Plot Diagram for The Grapes of Wrath

Plot Diagram for The Grapes of Wrath
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Storyboard Description

The Grapes of Wrath summary plot diagram

Storyboard Text

  • It ain't the same. Looka that house. Somepin's happened. They ain't nobody there.
  • EXPOSITION
  • CONFLICT
  • RISING ACTION
  • Tommy Joad has been paroled from prison early for good behavior. He was sent there after killing Herb Turnbull in a barfight. He arrives back to his family’s farm to find it deserted; his family has all moved to his Uncle John’s after the bank took the land. He runs into a former Reverend, Jim Casy, and his neighbor Muley Graves. He resolves to go to Uncle John’s the following morning.
  • CLIMAX
  • Because Tommy is out on parole, he technically cannot leave the state. However, his family is planning to move to the San Joaquin Valley of California, where a government program promises a beautiful future for displaced farmers. The entire family and Casy have to fit into a small jalopy Hudson Super-Six truck in order to travel the 2,000 miles across the country.
  • FALLING ACTION
  • The Joads set off on Highway 66, where many others from the Great Plains areas are migrating west. Grandpa Joad has a stroke the night they leave, and dies. As the Joads drive on, they begin to hear rumblings that there aren’t enough jobs in California, after all. As they continue, Noah decides to leave the group, Sairy Wilson is too sick to continue traveling with the Joads, and Granma dies.
  • RESOLUTION
  • At the Hooverville migrant camp, the Joads find corrupt police officers and hostile locals. Casy takes the blame for striking a deputy who was out of control, and is carted off to prison. The Joads move to Weedpatch, which is run by the migrants themselves. They are offered a job picking peaches and find out it’s because the regular workers are on strike. Casy is in charge. He is hit and killed by a police officer, and Tommy explodes, killing the officer.
  • The Joads move onto a cotton-picking field where Tommy hides out until his injuries are healed from the fight. The Joads share a boxcar with the Wainwrights, and Al Joad and Agnes Wainwright fall in love. After another disappointing job opportunity, Rose of Sharon goes into labor and gives birth to a stillborn baby. Tom decides to continue Casy’s work by staying behind to help the migrant workers. The boxcar is overtaken by floodwaters, so the Joads flee.
  • The Joads come to a farm where they find a barn for shelter. Rose of Sharon is still very ill. Inside the barn, they find a young boy and a man, his father, who is starving from being sick and is not able to eat solid foods anymore without getting sick. Rose of Sharon gives the dying man her breast, which has milk from her recent birth, and covers him with a blanket. She is strangely at peace.
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