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Of Mice and Men
Transcript of Of Mice and Men
by John Steinbeck
Elements of the Novel:
Plot - The related series of eventsthat make up a story.
Climax - (part of the plot): the turning point of the story. The emotional high point.
Conflict - The struggles between opposing forces. There are two main types:
Internal, which occurs within yourself...you're battling yourself.
Man vs. Man
Man vs. Nature
Man vs. Beast
Point of View:
•Third-person point of view is that of an outsider looking at the action. The writer may choose third-person omniscient, in which the thoughts of every character are open to the reader, or third-person limited, in which the reader enters only one character's mind, either throughout the entire work or in a specific section. Third-person limited differs from first-person because the author's voice, not the character's voice, is what you hear in the descriptive passages.
Setting: Time and Place
1930's - California - Dust Bowl...Great Depression
The Plight of Migrant Workers
George Milton - George is small, intelligent, dark of face, has restless eyes and sharp, strong features with every part of him defined. He is a "cousin" to Lennie and loves him very much. Always has to bail Lennie out of his troubles.
Lennie Small - Lennie is unnaturally large and has a shapeless face. He drags his feet when he walks and lets his arms hang. He is mentally challenged and needs George's constant attention and care. He has an infatuation with anything soft and furry. He acts impulsively which gets him and George into trouble numerous times.
Curley - Curley is the boss's son, and was a welterweight boxer. He was short and stocky, and wore high-heeled boots and spurs to prove he wasn't a laboring man. He believes himself superior to everyone.
Candy-He is an old man that is missing a hand.He is an outcast and is discriminated against. He offers his life savings to George and Lennie to help finance their dream. He wants to be a part of it and live on the farm
with them. He has a friend and long time companion, his dog. Candy represents what will ultimately happen to all ranch hands. They will get old and have no place to go.
Black stable worker. He is disfigured and is an outcast like Candy. He has a place of his own and stays there by himself. He claims he doesn't want company, but he also wants to be part of George and Lennie's dream. He says that he would work for free. He is the only one who understands Lennie, besides George, and befriends him. He looks past Lennie's mental handicap and Lennie looks past Crooks' physical handicap.
Carlson- He has a lack of concern for other people's feelings and doesn't take time to understand them. He is an insensitive person who cares nothing for
others. Carlson is the type of man George hopes to avoid becoming.
Curley's Wife: There isn't much known about her. She isn't even given a name. She is lonely because Curley doesn't pay
much attention to her. This lack of attention from Curley forces her to seek it elsewhere. She flirts with the other ranch hands but they pay her no attention either. She longs to go to Hollywood to become a fabulous starlet.
1. Steinbeck Biography
2. Worksheet p. 6
Anticipation Reaction Guide p.7-8
Note Taking and Summarizing Sheet - Chapter One p.12
Standards Focus: Dialogue p.13-14
Vocabulary Context Clues
Character Analysis Trace - Jim Burke Organizers
Chapter Quiz - Matching and Short Response
Note Taking and Summarizing p.16
Standard Focus: Analyzing Poetry. "To a Mouse by robert burns" p. 17
Vocabulary in Context Chapter Two p. 19
Continue Character Analysis Sheets
Introduce Theme Trace
Note Taking and Summarizing p.20
Standards focus: details p.21
Vocabulary Practice p.22 - Synonyms and Antonyms p. 22
Continue Character Arcs and Theme Traces
Slim - A highly skilled mule driver
and the acknowledged “prince” of the ranch,
Slim is the only character who seems to be at peace with himself.
The other characters often look to Slim for advice.
The American Dream
Man vs. Society:
What elements of your culture or society conflict with your individuality or happiness?
- Religious conflicts
- Government? Laws?
- Social customs?
Curley's father. The owner of the ranch.
The boss questions George's "stake" in Lennie.
Traveling companions were rare within the migrant worker community, so he assumed he was taking advantage of him by taking his paychecks (which actually was sort of true).
Of Mice and Men in Pop Culture: