Woody Guthrie’s recently discovered novel, House of Earth, was published posthumously and makes tangible the timeless issues of poverty and oppression. The story takes place in the 1940s, after the height of the Depression. Tike and Ella May Hamlin begin as renters of a piece of arid, desolate land that barely sustains them. When it’s time to renew their rental agreement, they are left with one option; they become sharecroppers, which deepens their hole and weds them to a life of debt and poverty. Hope for change is harder to come by, but determination never deserts them.