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Foreshadowing is the essential part of Steinbecks style in Of Mice and Men

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Introduction

"Foreshadowing is the essential part of Steinbeck's style in 'Of Mice and Men' " Steinbeck, in my opinion, has one of the most unique styles of writing which is not only effective but also inspirational. The fact that he puts the whole plot and the ending right in front of us (at the beginning, in every section and even in the name) and we don't recognise it easily is truly fascinating. Hints of the 'grand finale' could be found nearly everywhere in the novella. In the beginning of the play we learn that Lennie likes to pet soft things. He starts off by petting a mouse and then petting a puppy, of which he kills both as a result of his unrecognised brutal strength. The puppy was all innocent and fragile and Curley's wife was seen in the same way which foreshadows the killing of Curley's wife. ...read more.

Middle

The extract "I'll put the old devil out of his misery right now" was said by Carlson to Candy. This action foreshadows the death of Lennie; He can be personified as Candy's dog as his main purpose is also to accompany George hence when Lennie/ the dog is of no use or has exceeded his limit then he will be put down. This also highlights one of the theories attached to this story in perspective; the idea of Darwin's 'Survival of the fittest' theory. The natural environment and settings could also emphasise Darwin's theory as it was linked to nature but the quote also shows that a weak element in the food chain (Carlson) preys a weaker member of the food chain (the dog) and later on we learn that George (a weak member of the food chain) kills Lennie (a weaker member of the food chain in terms of mental abilities) ...read more.

Conclusion

This could be considered a gesture of loyalty and love that now Lennie wouldn't have to suffer anymore or it could also be a sign that George was just fed up of carrying Lennie's burden around on his back. In my judgement, I would question George's actions because I believe there are always other ways of getting around the situation and who gave George the right to take someone's life. In conclusion, the element of foreshadowing is the main and one of the most important techniques which the novella is based on. Foreshadowing and hints of the future aspects of the story could be found at nearly every stage of the novella and I think that this doesn't only make the story interesting but it also clamps the reader in deeper and deeper, it makes a reader's hunger to find out the ending even more and more. In my opinion, Of Mice and Men is one of the most inspiring story's I've read not only plot and content wise but also writer's techniques wise. ...read more.

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Response to the question

This is a response to a question discussing the device of foreshadowing in John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men'. In their answers, candidates must refers to Steinbeck's method of foreshadowing and, where applicable, the recurrent theme of it. They must ...

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Response to the question

This is a response to a question discussing the device of foreshadowing in John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men'. In their answers, candidates must refers to Steinbeck's method of foreshadowing and, where applicable, the recurrent theme of it. They must also comment on the effect on the reader. Whilst the candidate can be said to have done that, it is of a very poor standard. The analysis is brief and far too often the candidate instead proposes a question to us (without a question mark) - "who gave George the right to take someones life". This shows that the candidate does not understand the novel. All candidates must appreciate the gravity of George and Lennie's predicament at the end of the novel and cannot make such sweeping remarks as this.

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is very debatable. On one hand there is evidence that the candidate can correctly identify moments that are appropriate for analysis with regard to the question proposed, but there is a clear lack of comprehension about the writer's intentions, the novella's plot (the candidate seems to think that Curly's wife was aware of "what happened in Weed" and the events prior to her death with regard to Lennie smothering animals, but this is not the case; she does not know of these incidents) and how to successfully comment on the effect on the reader. It would be advisable to follow the PEE (Point, Evidence & Explanation) structure if essay writing under the pressure of exam time causes you to lose track of your thoughts. Make a point; an observation with regard to the proposed question, then prove it's not just personal opinion by providing a quote from the source text, and then explain it further - what is the author telling us is about to happen? How does it relate to the finale?, etc.
Candidates are reminded that personal opinions and rhetorical questions towards the examiner are not required for analytical question and will lose marks if their answer is based on a subjective response. The candidate answers the questions - not the examiner. Analysis MUST be objective - candidates are trying to understand, with insight and evidence, how/what/why/to what effect the author is achieving their particular aim. Explanations hung off the back of phrases like "In my judgement" harbour no marks.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication (QWC) is average. There is evidence of colloquial language such as "pretty identical" and this, for the reasons of adhering to the proper English standards, is not allowed an will lose marks. Candidates must proof-read their answers before closing their exam paper/handing in their coursework to ensure that their QWC is of an acceptable standard.


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