Of Mice and Men - Background Information

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'Of Mice and Men' is set on a Ranch in California

  • Although the ranch where George and Lennie work is fictional, Weed and Soldedad are both real places in California.
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Life during the Great Depression was tough

  • The Great Depression in the 1930s hit farmers badly. Many farmers were forced to leave their homes and move to other areas to find work.
  • Many farmers had borrowed money from the banks to buy moder machines for their farms. These machines helped farmers to produce more crops, but eventually led to overproduction, which made prices fall. 
  • A drought in the 1930s, combined with over-farming, created the 'Dust Bowl'. The soil dried up and the wind blew away the fertile top layer. Huge areas of farmland became like a desert, and couldn't be used to grow crops
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