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Of Mice and Men- Historical Context

To build background knowledge prior to reading OMM
by

Waleska Mendoza

on 30 October 2014

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Transcript of Of Mice and Men- Historical Context

Stock Market
Crash of 1929
More than
$30 billion
was lost in the stock market by
December 1929
.
Causes for the stock market crash included:
1.
Excessive
spending and
borrowing
2.
Unpaid
debt to banks
3. Banks failed leading to
bankruptcy
and
layoffs
.
Great Depression
Unemployment increased from
3%
in 1929 to
25%
by 1933 to
13 million
.
9,000
banks closed, costing
$9 million
in individual
life savings
to be
lost
.
The average American family income fell from
$2,300
to
$1,500
between 1929 to 1932.
Dust Bowl
Occurred between
1930
and
1936
in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, and New Mexico, known as
the Great Plains
.
In the Great Plains,
14 dust storms
were recorded in
1932
and
38

dust storms
in
1933
.
The
winds
hit velocity of up to
40
to
50
mph, blowing
650 million

tons
of
top soil
off the Great Plains.
Causes included:
New farming machinery
promoted plowing of
larger areas
of grassland.
Over production
of wheat and
overgrazing
of livestock
Extreme
drought
and record
high temperatures
Planting of crops that were
not drought resistant
thereby giving nothing to
hold the topsoil
in place.
Migrant Farm Workers
Dust Bowl exodus the
largest migration
in American history.
Popular methods of travel included:
Riding the rails and hitchhiking
Many received
harsh
welcomes or even were
turned away
at the border of California.
Earnings ranged from
.75 cents
to
$1.25
a day.
From their earning, farmers
had to pay .25 cents
to

rent a tar-paper shack
with no flooring or plumbing and often had to
buy their own groceries
from high-priced company stores.
Of Mice and Men
- Historical Context


about two
migrant workers
searching for
work and a better life in
Soledad, CA
.

Two years later
, he publishes his Pulitzer
Prize winning novel
The Grapes of Wrath
,
inspired by his visits to
migrant labor camps
at the height of the
Great Depression
.
John Steinbeck
Publishes
Of Mice and Men
in
1937
, a tale
*Economy did not fully
recover until
after 1939
with the start of WWII.
Explain in which ways you
think these mistakes of
the past made an impact
on Americans' idea of
financial responsibility
today.
How are these facts and statistics
about unemployment and family
income similar to what our
economy has and is currently
facing today?
Explain the important
lesson mother nature
taught Americans
during the 1930s
and an example of
similar lesson mother
nature is teaching us
today.
Argue for or against
possible reasons for the
discrimination of
migrant farm workers
within CA.
Full transcript