Bradford Wright 10/5/04Jim Casy is the most interesting character we have met so far. Theformer preacher has a colored past and he seems to be moving into acompletely different point in his life.
Although he has given up the lifeof a preacher, Casy still has the instincts of a preacher to help those inneed. Jim Casy decidedly does not believe in the church anymore, but hedoes have very strong emotions and opinions about life and how it should belived. He tries to keep himself from preaching his opinions to others, buthe still has the need to speak his mind no matter how sheepishly.Jim Casy decides to go west with the Joad family to start off his newlife as a reformed preacher. “Gonna lay in the grass open an’ honest withanyone that’ll have me. Gonna cus an’ swear an’ hear the poetry of folkstalkin’. All that’s holy, all that’s what I didn’ understan’.
All themthings is the good things.” (pg.128) He wants to try and understand peopleand connect with them in a way that he could not as a “holy man”. Casybelieves that the real important things in life are not found in the bible,but rather in the everyday lives of people, especially the simple peopleliving regular lives.
He feels he can learn more from just listening toTom and his family then he ever did studying the scriptures and solvingpeoples’ problems.Jim Casy is very reserved and quiet, unless prompted into a topic orconversation. Once he gets hold of an idea, though, he runs with it andtries to get across the way he looks at the world. “Oh, I’m a talker! saidCasy. “No getting’ away from that. But I ain’t preachin’. Preachin’ istellin’ folks stuff.
I’m askin’ ’em. That ain’t preachin’, is it?”(pg.128) Jim has a very deep and inquisitive mind. He spends a lot of hislife thinking. So when he becomes involved in a topic all the questionsand ideas he has going through his head start emptying out into a drawn outspeech. What comes out is not necessarily structured and may not evenmakes sense sometimes, but he makes you think. This is what makes Jim Casyso intriguing, when he says something you have to thoroughly examine whathe says in order to fully appreciate it. If you just read the words atface value then you lose much of the meaning.
Any character that makes thereader think is always interesting and how he develops in his new lifestylewill be the most interesting progression of all.