Of Mice and Men

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  • Created on: 05-05-13 13:02
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  • Of Mice and Men
    • John Steinbeck
      • Born 1902- 35 years old when OMAM was published.
      • Steinbeck was of a wealthy family however spent time as a young man as a migrant ranch worker.
        • The details of the novella are therefore accurate.
    • Context
      • Set in the time of the Great Depression
        • Widespread povery
          • Whole families moved across America to the 'Golden State' of California to find work and weren't greeted kindly.
            • 'Okies' were  not wanted by California and often had nowhere to go.
          • "We got ten bucks between us" George p60
            • "ten bucks" is a near impossible amount for one man to survive on, let alone two
              • they HAD to survive on it
      • Women
        • Of  Mice and Men has quite a cruel portrayal of women
          • However all nice and positive thing are"her"s:
            • "...we'd jus' go to her" George talking about going to a carnival p61
            • "We'll let her die down" George talking about their fire p17
              • The fire that night allowed them to eat, kept them warm and could be used to protect them if they had needed it to.
                • Protection
                  • Aunt Clara
          • Women are almost always portrayed as a danger
            • Foreshadowing Lennie's involvement with Curley's wife and her death.
            • "Andy's in San Quentin right now on account of a tart" George warning Lennie to stay away from Curley's wife p56
          • Curley's wife is nameless
            • Even Slim's dog has a name- Lulu
              • threatens to destroy the mens' happiness and longevity
          • However Aunt Clara, Lulu and the women in the "cat house" are described positively.
            • Susy is an entrepreneur, a business woman
              • "'My girls is clean'" Whit speaking for Susy p53
            • Steinbeck incorporates many stereotypes of women to portray women at this time.
              • All of these women/female characters serve men in some way.
                • However Aunt Clara, Lulu and the women in the "cat house" are described positively.
                  • Susy is an entrepreneur, a business woman
                    • "'My girls is clean'" Whit speaking for Susy p53
                  • Steinbeck incorporates many stereotypes of women to portray women at this time.
                    • All of these women/female characters serve men in some way.
                      • Aunt Clara: looked after Lennie and gave him mice.
                      • Lulu: provides company and has puppies which could be sold or trained.
                      • Cat house: fulfill men's sexual desires as they are young sinlge men.
                • Aunt Clara: looked after Lennie and gave him mice.
                • Lulu: provides company and has puppies which could be sold or trained.
                • Cat house: fulfill men's sexual desires as they are young sinlge men.
      • The elderly
        • Untitled
      • Published 1937
    • Themes
      • Loneliness
        • Soledad
      • Companionship
      • Outsiderdom
      • American Dream
      • Violence
      • Marginalised factions of society
      • Hope and faith
      • Power and status
    • Structure
      • Cyclic
        • Portrays hopelessness of ranch hands' lives at this time.
        • Starts and ends at the pool by the Salinas River
          • Represents start and end of life and how nothing changes.
    • Imagery
      • Animals
        • Lennie
          • "the way a bear drags his paws" p4
            • immediately described as a potentially dangerous and incredibly powerful animal
              • foreshadows murder of Curley's wife, puppies and the crushing of Curley's hand.
              • a bear can also be though of as a cuddly teddy bear
                • false sense of security for reader
          • "like a horse" p4
            • another powerful, strong animal
            • when a horse falls, it takes down its jockey.
              • Lennie is the horse, George and the Dream are the jockey?
                • when Lennie is killed, does the Dream die too?
          • "dabbled his big paw" p5
            • immediately described as a potentially dangerous and incredibly powerful animal
              • foreshadows murder of Curley's wife, puppies and the crushing of Curley's hand.
              • a bear can also be though of as a cuddly teddy bear
                • false sense of security for reader
          • "The small man stepped nervously beside him"
            • reinforces initial idea of Lennie being a danger, his companion is nervous.
          • "like a terrier who doesn't want to bring a ball to its master" p10
            • Lennie is a terrier
              • a typical terrier temperament is described as reluctant to back down.
                • Lennie doesn't know when to stop
            • George is the "master", leader, provider and carer.
        • George
          • "small and quick" p4
            • a mouse
              • "restless eyes and strong, dark features" p4
                • nervous?
      • Biblical
        • Pool by the Salinas river = Garden of Eden.
          • "fresh and green" p1
            • all very alive and growing
              • where Lennie is killed.
          • "A water snake glided smoothly up the pool" p98
            • a snake tempted Eve
              • foreshadows and evil occurrence
                • Lennie's death
          • The Dream farm = Garden of eden.
            • The land of milk and honey (Exodus)
              • The dream farm: "live on the fatta the lan'" p56
                • "the cream is so God damn think you got to cut it with a knife" p57
        • Lennie is killed because nobody except George fully understand him
          • Jesus
            • Judas betrays Jesus
              • George kills Lennie
            • Jesus and Lennie both killed for something which they can't really control.
              • his mental issues
        • Lennie thinks about the future before his death
          • Jesus prayed at Gethsemane
          • Jesus
            • Judas betrays Jesus
              • George kills Lennie
            • Jesus and Lennie both killed for something which they can't really control.
              • his mental issues
    • Characters
      • George
        • "small and quick" p4
      • Lennie
        • "terrier"p10
      • Slim
        • "the prince of the ranch" p34
      • Crooks
        • "negro stable buck"p66
      • Candy
        • "tall, stoop-shouldered old man" p19
      • Curley
        • "always scrappy" p28
      • Curley's wife
        • "poison" p33
  • The animals which live in the clearing by the pool "hurried noiselessly for cover" as Lennie approached.
    • the other animals know that Lennie is a threat.
  • "I don' like this place George. This ain't no good place"
    • Jesus knew of his fate and it seems Lennie does too?

Comments

Crystal Blue ♥

5 Star:).. Have my first literature exam today and don't know anything!


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