To A God Unknown Book Report

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To A God Unknown is a book written by John Steinbeck first published in 1933. This is Steinbeck’s second published novel. After reading the book, we were asked to write an essay responding to a question about the book. The question is, why is the book called To A God Unknown? In this novel, Joseph Wayne moves to California in hopes to find new land. His three brothers travel from Vermont to join Joseph on the homestead after their father dies. The four of them develop the land and create a thriving ranch. Joseph struggles with his own beliefs as well as how beliefs affect people. The book is called To A God Unknown because Joseph, as well as his brothers, believe in many unknown gods.

Burton, Joseph’s brother, believes that Joseph is worshipping tree gods. When Joseph first saw his piece of land in Nuestra Senora, he was astonished at its beauty. On his property, there is a big oak tree. Throughout the book, Joseph develops a strong connection with the tree. He treats the tree as if it is his father alive in the physical world. Burton doesn’t concur with Joseph’s connection with the tree. After a while, Burton gets sick of Joseph and the tree. He decides
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At the end of the book, there is a terrible drought that kills his land and some of his livestock. He is devastated and decides to go to the glade. When he finds that the glade is unaffected by the drought, he thinks he could save the land by killing himself. When Joseph cuts his wrists it immediately starts raining. The townspeople had a huge celebration with dancing and music, they were so thankful for the rain. Father Angelo decided not to celebrate, but instead he thinks of Joseph, “That man must be very happy now” (Steinbeck 186). He says this because Joseph told him to pray for the land and for the rain. Joseph does this because he is a farmer and worships the land. He believes there is a god of the land; 2he worships that god by taking care of the
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