English Literature: Of Mice and Men Analysis Chapter Five

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What effect does the beginning of the chapter have? - a peaceful description of a "lazy and warm" Sunday afternoon.
The calmness juxtaposes with the "bad thing" that Lennie's done.
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What "bad thing" has Lennie done? Explain.
He has killed the puppy. He's angry with it because he's terrified George won't let him tend the rabbits. His anger is sudden and violent - he shouts at the dead puppy and throws it across the barn.
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What is the puppy's death another symbol of?
Something bad is going to happen - once again Lennie's attempts to show affection have ended in tragedy.
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What does Curley's wife do when she meets Lennie in the barn? Why?
She flirts with him because she doesn't know any other kind of communication
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What does the fact that Curley's wife tells Lennie she still dreams of being a film star show? - "Maybe I will yet"
That she still hopes for a better life.
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Why does it seem that Curley's wife has planned her encounter with Lennie?
Because she mentions twice that the other men are playing the horseshoe game and they won't "leave till it's over" This means that she knows they'll be alone for a little while
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What is the issue even though Curley's wife's actions seem reckless?
She doesn't really know how dangerous Lennie is.
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What does the fact that for large parts of the conversation, Lennie and Curley's wife are talking past each other show?
That their failure to listen to each other shows that most of the characters don't care about each other's dreams.
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What do Lennie and Curley's wife both have in common?
They like soft things like hair and velvet.
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What does Curley's wife resist which causes Lennie to suddenly become violent? What two things does this echo?
His attempts to stroke her hair. This echoes the way he pinches the mice and smacks the puppy.
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What is Lennie's violence triggered by?
Fear - like an animal
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Talk about the description of Curley's wife "flopped like a fish"
It is an awfully similar to how Curley is described when Lennie crushes his hand - "flopping like a fish on a line"
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What has Lennie's actions done?
Ended the dreams of several characters.
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George's dream of owning his own land and being his own boss is over - what does he know his future is going to consist of?
Spending his monthly wages on women and whisky.
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What does George's quote of the dream "I think I knowed we'd never do her" suggest?
That he always knew what his destiny would be.
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What happens to Curley's wife when she's dead? - "the meanness and the plannings and the discontent and the ache for attention were all gone from her face"
She becomes more beautiful
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What does Candy do when he realises the dream is over?
He breaks down at the bitterness of his loss and for what will happen to Lennie - he says Lennie is "such a nice fella" and a "poor *******"
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Who does Candy blame for ruining the dream? What does this show?
Curley's wife - shows he's selfish but also devastated by what's happened.
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Why does Curley want revenge?
Because he was been humiliated twice by Lennie.
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What is Curley's cold hearted nature emphasised by? What does this contrast with? What does this suggest?
His unwillingness to touch his dead wife which contrasts with the use of Vaseline to keep his hand soft for his wife. This suggests that he interest in his wife was purely sexual.
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Who touches Curley's wife? Explain.
Slim - who is usually efficient and businesslike but with Curley's wife he "felt her wrist" rather than taking her pulse, and he "touched her cheeky" and "explored her neck"
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What does Slim's tender actions emphasis/imply?
It may be emphasising Slim's authority as the 'spiritual leader' of the men and his gentleness contrasts with Lennie's sudden violence. It also implies Slim may have felt affection for Curley's wife.
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What does George know he has to do?
Get to Lennie before Curley and the rest do or else they'll kill him slowly and painfully.
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How does Steinbeck suggest George is going to kill Lennie?
Carlson reveals that his Luger (gun) is missing - Steinbeck hints that George has the gun - he 'weakly' suggests that Carlon's lost it. This missing gun gives the reader a clear indiction of what George is planning to do and how he intends to do it.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What "bad thing" has Lennie done? Explain.

Back

He has killed the puppy. He's angry with it because he's terrified George won't let him tend the rabbits. His anger is sudden and violent - he shouts at the dead puppy and throws it across the barn.

Card 3

Front

What is the puppy's death another symbol of?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What does Curley's wife do when she meets Lennie in the barn? Why?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What does the fact that Curley's wife tells Lennie she still dreams of being a film star show? - "Maybe I will yet"

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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