Annotated Bibliography – A Field of Wheat
Ross, Sinclair. A Field of Wheat. Queen’s Quarterly. A Field of Wheat. Winnipeg, 1935.
The article in discussion is a story about the devastating effects of sudden hailstorms that results in destroying a family’s entire crop. The head of household, John, is not comfortable in revealing his emotions to the family and thus retreats to the barn where he cries alone in isolation. The work is another example of farming life in the prairies where the setting is back in the depression regime coupled with the threats that families faced in the wake of destructive power from natural forces. The naturalistic impression is ideal for class study especially when we consider the economic prose and lack of sentimentality in literature. Moreover, the theme of hope is evident in the text as we see the manner in which the protagonists hopes that nature would take pity on his family. Some of the literary tools that make studying the text interesting is the use of imagery. By referring to the depression years, the audience is immediately swamped with images of dry, dusty, and dark lands thereby effectively contributing to the tragic mood. In addition to that, the class read makes the audience succumbs to a sense of foreboding. Closely linked to the relevance of the class discussion is that the audience is made to understand that the prose is another example of how nature connects to human emotions. The author selects specific imagery to advances such idea through the life of the protagonist family that is forced to find ways of making a living despite the harshness of the depression. Another powerful tool used that makes the text worthy for study is symbolism. The author has carefully designed different weather patterns so as he may alter the mood of the audience. In other words, the different weathers in the story all have different meanings. Suffice to say that the Canadian novelist and storywriter know his trade.