Travels with Charley (Steinbeck) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions 
Use our LitLovers Book Club Resources; they can help with discussions for any book:

How to Discuss a Book (helpful discussion tips)
Generic Discussion Questions—Fiction and Nonfiction
Read-Think-Talk (a guided reading chart)

Also consider these LitLovers talking points to help get a discussion started for Travels with Charley:

1. What anxieties do people express to Steinbeck, and how do those fears affect the political atmosphere? Are there similarities between that time and ours—the nuclear vs. terrorist threat?

2. Steinbeck considers that radio and teen popular music will minimize regional differences. Fifty years later, was he right? And is this good or badt?

3. Compare Steinbeck's assessment of technology in the 1960's with new technologies of today. What are the impacts, in his day and ours? Are they similar or different; good or harmful?

4. How has car travel changed over the past 50 years? (Think local vs. chain motels and restaurants, country roads v. the Interstate.)

5. To what extent does geography reflect (or cause?) Americans' attitudes then...and now. What regional attitudes did Steinbeck encounter? Are they different or similar today.

6. Talk about Lonesome Harry and what he represents.

7. What is Steinbeck's attitude toward immigration and idea of America as a "melting-pot"? What did it mean to be an American in the 1960's vs. today?

8. If you could change one thing in America, what would it be?

(Questions by LitLovers. Please feel free to use them, online or off, with attribution. Thanks.)

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