OF MICE AND MENBy:John Steinbeck John Steinbeck was born in Salinas, California in 1902.This was a small town by the Salinas Valley, a few miles off the Pacific coast.He began his studies at Stanford University, but left without taking a degree.After several labor jobs, he began his work as an author.
In 1935 he wrote Tortilla Flat, an immediate success.He also wrote In Dubious Battle, Of Mice and Men, and the Grapes of Wrath.In 1962 he won the Nobel Prize in Literature and died in 1968. In the story there are two main characters.Their names are given as George Milton and Lennie Small.They were basically fugitives running from the law looking for work.Lennie was what they said to be insane and George looked after him.
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When they find work at a nearby ranch, this is where the problems begin.George decides to get Lennie a puppy, but he plays too hard with it and it dies.In his anger he kills Curley’s wife and flees from the ranch.Later on George goes out and finds him and he shoots Lennie. The unifying element of the book Of Mice and Men is characters.
The two characters share a somewhat symbiotic relationship.Together they both need each other to survive.George helps Lennie by doing most of the talking and business, whereas Lennie acts as a bodyguard or protector because of physical strength and size.This is how they both benefit from this, what some would say strange, relationship.
The story begins during the great Depression near the Salinas River in Soledad, California.Two immigrant workers, Lennie Small and George Milton, who were running from the law after being falsely accused of rape.When they reach the ranch bunkhouse, an old man named Candy shows them their beds.The boss comes in and they explain the reason for their lateness.After he leaves, a short man named Curley enters and challenges George to a fight. After one days work, the men return to the bunkhouse.Slim, whose dog has had a litter, gives Lennie a puppy.George admits to Slim that he and Lennie are not cousins.George tells Lennie of the house that they will have and Candy claims that he knows of an available house if the three men put their money together.Curley picks a fight with Lennie because he thinks that he is laughing at him.Lennie ends up crushing his hand.While all the other men are gone Lennie tries.