English Literature

Overview of 'Of Mice and Men'.

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Of Mice and Men

Setting - Banks of Salinas river not far from Soledad. Friday evening.

  • George and Lennie sleep for the night. George tells Lennie to come back to the banks of the river if something goes wrong.
  • Book opens with suggestion that the peaceful world of nature is disturbed by man.

"the sound of footsteps on crisp sycamore leaves. The rabbits hurried noiselessly for cover."

  • The green pool is described as a beautiful place which is peaceful and innocent, like the Garden of Eden.
  • Small clues. The rabbits bolt at the sound of the men arriving. They may sense violence in the men. It might show that their dream is running away and never going to happen.

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Of Mice and Men

Lennie is compared to a range of animals by Steinbeck.

The bear and the horse signify strength.

"snorting into the water like a horse" -- "dragging his feet a little, the way a bear drags his paws"

A terrier when he refuses to give up his mouse.

"Lennie held his closed hand away from George's direction....'Aw, leave me have it, George'"

  • A cuckoo to suggest madness.
  • Not only a bear-like physicality, but also a kind of animal innocence.

Hands are important in the novel as well.

  • Lennie's hands are reffered to as paws. It shows power in them he doesn't know.
  • Curley's wife's red painted nails. Danger and predatorial claws.
  • Curley keeps his hand in a glove. Uses them with malice.
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Amazing, thanks alot! :) x Good luck for tuesday, I'm dreading it haha x

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