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Birds Do It, Bees Do It, and John Steinbeck Did It, Too

Movement was a major feature of John Steinbeck’s life and writing, and migration—human, animal, vegetable—is the focus of this year's John Steinbeck festival in Salinas, California, scheduled May 5-7 to coincide with Cinco de Mayo, a favorite fiesta of the country Steinbeck visited often in the 1930s and 40s. Like the author himself, the 2017 John Steinbeck festival is … [Read More...]

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John Steinbeck Saw “Fake News” Coming When Donald Trump Was Still In Diapers

Did John Steinbeck discover “fake news” seven decades before President Donald Trump? Based on what he wrote about the mainstream media of his day in A Russian … [Read More...]

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An Artful Reminder of Japanese American Internment 75 Years Ago

The forced internment of 120,000 Japanese Americans two months after the bombing of Pearl Harbor distressed John Steinbeck, who admired Franklin Roosevelt, the … [Read More...]

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What I Learned from The Winter of Our Discontent

I’m a small-town high school teacher and newspaper columnist, and every month I pick a new book, usually a literary novel, to read and recommend to my followers, who seem to enjoy what I have to say. Recently I chose The Winter of Our Discontent, and I confess … [Read More...]

Of Mice and Men In the News

The January 21 episode of Saturday Night Live gave a shout-out to John Steinbeck during the weekly fake-news feature “Weekend Update,” further substantiating Steinbeck’s pop-culture standing and sending Of Mice and Men students back to the book to find out … [Read More...]

No Room in Donald Trump’s Inn for Arts and Humanities

In 1965 John Steinbeck was a member of President Johnson's council on the arts when Johnson signed legislation creating the National Endowment for the Arts, the federal agency charged with “bringing the arts to all Americans” and “providing leadership in arts … [Read More...]

Truth or Twitter? Why Donald Trump Is No John Steinbeck

Donald Trump bragged that someone once called him the Ernest Hemingway of Twitter. Unfortunately for us, the new president possesses neither the courage nor the self-control of Hemingway, winner of the 1954 Nobel Prize in Literature for writing unforgettably … [Read More...]