Study Guide

Old African American Hitchhiker in Travels with Charley

By John Steinbeck

Old African American Hitchhiker

Steinbeck picks up an older African American man as he's driving away from New Orleans. He tries to strike up a conversation with the guy about race relations, but that goes over like a lead balloon. It makes the older man super-nervous, and he asks to be let out, pretending that he's near his home (he's not).