–John Steinbeck Background Born in 1902 Attended Stanford Won Nobel Prize in 1962 Died in 1968
Steinbeck’s Most Famous Works Grapes of Wrath Of Mice and Men The Pearl
Background Information for Of Mice and Men During the late 1930s, California was struggling with the economic problems of the Great Depression Steinbeck wrote movingly about the struggles of migrant farm workers in his most famous works: –Of Mice and Men (1937), –The Grapes of Wrath (1939).
Overview for Of Mice and Men George is Lennie’s keeper, and Lennie imitates everything that George does. George promises Lennie that some day they will have their own farm and raise rabbits as well as other animals. Lennie causes George problems; he has a bad habit of hurting the very things he feels affection towards (like pet mice, which he pets too hard and kills)
Setting of for Of Mice and Men Set in California's Salinas Valley, the story takes place on a large ranch during the Great Depression. Salinas Valley, was dominated by large collective farms, or "farm factories These farm factories employed hundreds of workers, many of whom were migrants. Small farms of a few hundred acres, such as the one Lennie and George dream about, were relatively scarce.
Main Characters –George: The migrant ranch hand who takes care of Lennie. He is one of two main protagonists in the story. He is slender, small and quick, with a dark face, restless eyes, and sharp features. Taking care of Lennie shows George’s need for companionship, but also his high moral character and compassion because Lennie is such a burden and George is completely loyal to him. George dreams of owning a small farm of his own, but his dream is lost.
Lennie George’s mildly retarded traveling companion and the other main protagonist in the story. He is a huge man, with large, pale eyes, a shapeless face, and sloping shoulders. Lennie is frequently portrayed in animal terms and loves to pet soft things. He is large and possesses incredible physical strength, yet he has the mind of a child. Lennie also dreams of owning a farm with his friend George, but Lennie causes the ruin of their dream.
Supporting Characters –Candy: –Curley: An old, crippled man who has lost his hand Swamper at the ranch Son of ranch owner Formidable pugilist (Boxer)
Supporting Characters, Continued –Curley’s Wife: –Crooks: Considered a tramp by most of the ranch men Doesn’t have a name Stable buck of the ranch Only Black man
Supporting Characters, Continued –Carlson –Slim –Boss Large man who complains about Candy’s old dog Offers to put the dog down Ranch foreman Wise man Suspects George and Lennie when they arrive late Fair man