Wednesday, 23 November 2011
Steinbeck on the BBC
Melvyn Bragg travels from Oklahoma to California to examine the enduring legacy of the Nobel Prize-winning author John Steinbeck.
In novels such as The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men and Cannery Row, Steinbeck gave voice to ordinary people who were battling poverty, drought and homelessness. Travelling the famous Route 66 from the midwest to the Pacific coast, Melvyn assesses how relevant Steinbeck's work is today. He visits the site of the 1930s dust bowl in Oklahoma; the California orchards where bloody political battles were fought between migrant labourers and growers; and the Monterey coastline where Steinbeck developed his ideas on ecology.
Melvyn makes a case for Steinbeck as one of the great voices of American literature.
On BBC iPLayer until 29 November: http://www.bbc.co.uk/i/b017j50x/