Of Mice and Men A* Revision notes

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Of Mice and Men A* Revision
How to get an A*
Make sure you are constantly using quotes and saying why
Relate EVEYTHING to Steinbeck and WHY the author Steinbeck has
created the characters to be like they are
Speak about the audience and why Steinbeck does certain things to
influence our views on things.
Say a lot about a little
Give alternative interpretations (more than one per point)
Always refer back to Context and how Characters show the hegemony at
the time of the novella
Use `Steinbeck' a lot
A* Ideas/Points to make:
Structure of the novella is cyclical.
Pyramid Structure of novella:
1. Exposition ­ Setting/Main characters introduced
2. Inciting incident ­ a catalyst for conflict
3. Rising action ­ Series of events which keeps the reader interested
4. Climax ­ The main character is faced with conflict and a choice to make
5. Denouement ­ The consequences of the action the main character made
Some could say that Steinbeck used this structure not just to make the
book interesting but as a way to show some of the contemporary views by
applying it to characters
One character this could be applied to is Crooks . Over the book we are
given glimpses about his character but do not actually meet him until late
in the novella. This could show how many black people were prejudged
solely because of their colour instead of waiting to see what he is like.
How to answer the question:
Part A: 3 points from the extract
Part B: Introduction with one point about the theme, 3 paragraphs about
separate events with 2/3 points which are well analysed and back up what
you said in your introduction.

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Character Interpretations
Lennie:
Lennie shows the audience the harsh reality of society whilst also
emphasising the animalistic nature of some men
"don't know no rules"
o Lennie is the most innocent person however as he does not understand
the rules of society.
o Could also be Steinbeck actually saying how, without rules, men are
animalistic killers who show no remorse in doing so.…read more

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Candy:
Candy is used to emphasise the harshness of society
"You seen what they done to my dog tonight?"
o Dog is used to represent Candy and how society treat old/useless
people, would rather get shot . Could show the value of work to a man
o Could also show how he can prove his status through work instead of
violence.…read more

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Carlson: "luger"
Very obnoxious, used in the novella to show the violent side to
masculinity, a character who simply enjoys killing.
Use of a `luger' (A German gun) implies Carlson is like a Nazi, someone
who is evil.
Themes
Fate:
Lennie was always going to ruin the dream , killing a mouse, then a pup
and then eventually Curley's wife
However you could also say that the only reason the dream failed was
because George stopped believing in it.…read more

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Religious Symbolism
Some could say that the ending reflects the Easter story opposite:
o Good Friday ­ Both safely alive, escape trial and death
o Saturday Burial ­ They are going to `heaven' now they can buy farm
o Sunday resurrection ­ Lennie is killed with no resurrection
Steinbeck may have done this to:
o Show there is no heaven or hope and that God is an easy way out from
loneliness
o Society is creating this cruel cycle and forcing men into this sinful…read more

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