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Having Read Of Mice Men,What have you learnt about the life of a ranch worker in 1930’s America?

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19/11/2001 Having Read Of Mice Men, What have you learnt about the life of a ranch worker in 1930's America? The book Of Mice and Men is set in California, at the time of the Great Depression. The American stock market had collapsed, and left the country in a state of economic disarray. This affected the two main characters George and Lennie who have to work on ranches because there was a need for people to work on the land and not much work elsewhere. Georges dream is to own a farm or a ranch of his own so he could be his own boss and wouldn't have to be pushed round by other ranch owners who he works for now. This is the American dream George and Lennie aren't alone in their dream. He says to Lennie, "We're gonna have a little house and a couple of acres an' a cow and some pigs..." Because of this dream George resents authority, when he first meets Curley (the ranch owners son) he spoke to him in an 'insulting manner' and refuses to give Curley a straight answer. The life of the ranchers is very hard, they works every day except Sunday and only gets fifty dollars a month. All week the farm workers would toil the land for the ranch owners and would be paid a tiny percentage of the profit. ...read more.


Candy offers three hundred and fifty dollars to help George get his dream farm and so that Candy can leave the farm and look after himself, his attitude towards Curley, the ranch and Curley's wife changes after this. When Curley is starting on Lennie, Candy quickly rushes to his defence' "Glove fulla Vaseline," he said disgustedly' referring to the glove Curley wears on his hand full of Vaseline, to keep 'soft' for his wife. Candy is not scared of Curley and the boss anymore because if he gets sacked he can just move on to George's dream farm. With Candy's newfound confidence he starts sharing his views and sticking up for other people such as Crooks the black stable buck. Curley's wife is verbally attacking Crooks, telling him how she can get him killed if she wanted too. Candy retaliates by saying, "If you was to do that, we'd tell... We'd tell about you framing Crooks." He sticks up for Crooks, which shows he wasn't racist and that he also had a dream for a better society. Where is you have worked and are getting old you would have money, a pension, and that everyone is treated equally like him and Crooks. This shows that the book reflects the time its set because Candy would probably have a pension and wouldn't have been able to get sacked without out a just cause. ...read more.


Film work was one of the few types of work you could get as a woman, it was every girls dream, but it was often only a scam to take advantage of young women. Curley's wife remembers how a man in the 'pitchers' said he was going to write to her about being in the movies. But she says her mother stole the letter when it came, when really it didn't come at all. When Lennie killed her Steinbeck says. "The meanness and..... the ache for attention were all gone from her face." This means that she didn't have to try anymore and life wasn't just one long struggle for recognition. She had been released and was now more beautiful and alive than ever. Maybe it also means that she would get the attention now, she would be known as the woman who got killed by a mad man. Steinbeck draws attention to the idea that there is more to the American dream than just having a place of your own. The characters have dreams of an equal society. George describes to Lennie, "The place no-one's gonna hurt you." This reminds me of heaven where people would understand, listen and accept other people's right to a dignified and free life. Although we have more of a life like this now, that is very different from the inequality of the time of 'Mice and Men', we still have a long way to go to achieve Steinbeck's dream. 3 ...read more.

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