|Browne, Neil. “‘The Form of the New’: Pragmatist Literary Ecology and The Log
from the Sea of Cortez.” Steinbeck Newsletter 12.1 (1998): 10-13.
Explores the interdependence of self and world in The Log from the Sea of Cortez and
the writings of philosopher John Dewey. Finds that both “erect methods or structures
suited to an environment in which all things, all truths, all knowledge is contingent.”
Fensch, Thomas. “John Steinbeck: The Journalistic Background of The Grapes of Wrath.”
The Eye of the Reporter: Literature’s Heritage in the Press. Knight, Bill, and
Deckle McLean, ed. Essays in Lit. Books. Macomb, IL: Western IL UP, 1996.
Examines the seven-part series of articles, “The Harvest Gypsies,” that Steinbeck wrote
on the Dust Bowl migrants for the San Francisco Review in 1936. Comments on his spare
use of quotes and individuals, stating that it is risky for journalists to rely on composite
characters. Concludes that his writing was true investigative reporting, the series was
well conceived and planned, Steinbeck had a full understanding of the subject, he
contacted the right people, and he was able to remain a neutral reporter.
French, Warren G. John Steinbeck’s Nonfiction Revisited. New York: Twayne, 1996.
Intended as a companion to French’s John Steinbeck’s Fiction Revisited (1994).
Examines the nonfiction works “principally to advance the thesis that there was an
undeniable decline in the effective power of Steinbeck’s work after World War II, but
that the decline was attributable not so much to changes in his views and expressive
powers as in the times.” Organizes the discussion of works in the order in which they
were written. Analyzes “Harvest Gypsies,” The Sea of Cortez, WWII reporting,
The Russian Journal, the research for Zapata!, Journal of a Novel, the uncollected articles
written from 1953-56, Travels with Charley, America and Americans, and articles written
for Newsday’s “Letters to Alicia.”
Harmon, Robert. John Steinbeck and Newsday, with a Focus on “Letters to Alicia”:
An Annotated and Documented Reference Guide. San Jose: n. p., 1999.
Not available for annotation.
- - -. John Steinbeck: World War II Correspondent: An Annotated Reference Guide.
San Jose: Dibco, 1997.
Compiles Steinbeck’s 86 dispatches to the New York Herald Tribune for the first time
in one volume (Once There Was a War includes only 66). Section I offers an overview
of Steinbeck’s work during the war. Section II lists, annotates, and classifies sources of
and about his reports, including newspapers, periodicals, book collections, and reviews of
Once There Was a War. Section III is the collection of dispatches. There are only ten
copies of this valuable tool for Steinbeck researchers, which Harmon has published himself.
Sullivan, Christopher C. “John Steinbeck, War Reporter: Fiction, Journalism and
Types of Truth.” Journalism History 23.1 (1997): 16-23.
Examines Steinbeck’s World War II reporting, Bombs Away, and The Moon is Down,
and determines that all are valid forms of truth. Reveals that his journalism is sometimes
fictionalized, but contends that this makes the reporting more focused, memorable, and
true. Admits that Bombs Away is pure propaganda, but feels that the story is not faked.
Demonstrates that Moon provides background truths to his journalism.