Of Mice and men

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  • Created on: 22-05-11 17:42
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Context
The American Depression -
October 12 1929 was the beginning of the Wall Street Crash. It led to America's Depression which
lasted from 1930 through to 1936. One third of America's population became unemployed. Food
was short, and people couldn't afford to pay rent, and so they had to move.
Migrant Farmers -
A series of droughts in south-western states led to dried up land (the dust bowl), and so farmers
were forced to move away. People moved towards California, thinking they could find work there,
but California turned many of them away. Therefor they had to find work as casual ranch hands.
American Dream -
Migrants were promised a better life and to be able to rise from the bottom, socially and
economically, to the top through hard work.
Themes
Hopes and Dreams:
Repetition of living off the land makes it feel more achievable
Chapter 1 = hope of the dream
Chapter 6 = dream comforts Lennie before death and dream becomes unachievable
Circular plot = life will never change for these characters
We see a different side to Crooks and Candy when they express their aspirations
Curley's wife had a dream to be a movie star
We discover characters dreams when they have conversations with Lennie
Isolation:
Ranch "Soledad" means solitude (from Spanish)
Due to discrimination:
Crooks because he is black and crippled
Curley's wife because she is a woman and, is seen as "trouble" as she is Curley's possession
Candy because of his disability
Candy's dog because it is old and smells
Crooks uses his room as a retreat, he controls carefully who comes in and out which shows
that he is proud even though he has little.
George ends up alone at the end which shows the inevitability of becoming isolated when a
ranch hand (Circular plot)
Setting:
Weed foreshadows coming events
Barn = negative events (puppies and Curley's wife's death and the crushing of Curley's hand)
Setting reflects events to come

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Relationships:
George and Lennie = strength, friendship, father and son relationship, pet and master
Master and pet = Lennie and mice, Lennie and puppy, Candy and his dog, George and Lennie.…read more

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You'd drink out of a gutter if you was thirsty."pg. 5
4. "Slowly, like a terrier who doesn't want to bring a ball to its master, Lennie
approached, drew back, approached again." pg. 10
5. "if I was alone I could live so easy. I could go get a job an' work, an' no trouble....An'
whatta I got." pg. 12
6. "You get in trouble. You do bad things and I got to get you out.'" pg. 12
7.…read more

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Section 4
22. "I seen it over an' over-a guy talkin' to another guy and it don't make no difference if
he don't hear or understand. The thing is, they're talkin', or they're settin' still not
talkin'. It don't make no difference, no difference....It's just the talking." pg. 70
23. "They'll take ya to the booby hatch. They'll tie ya up with a collar, like a dog." pg. 71
24. "'A guy needs somebody-to be near him.…read more

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