East of Eden

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East of Eden (1952) is a novel by John Steinbeck about Salinas Valley, California. "Eden" in the title refers to the Garden of Eden. A successful movie starring James Dean, only roughly adapted from the second half of this novel, was based on a screenplay by the American screenwriter Paul Osborn.

As explained by the National Steinbeck Center in continuing his legacy:

“I think I would like to write the story of this whole valley,” he wrote to a friend in 1933, when he was 31 years old, “of all the little towns and all the farms and the ranches in the wilder hills. I can see how I would like to do it so that it would be the valley of the world.” In 1952 he published his epic novel about the Salinas Valley, East of Eden.[1]

The story of Cal and Aron in the movie is essentially an adaptation of the story of Cain and Abel in the Book of Genesis in the Bible.