• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How does the novel Of Mice and Men reflect the culture of 1930s America?

Extracts from this document...


How does the novel 'Of Mice and Men' reflect the culture of 1930's America? In my essay I am going to write regarding how John Steinbeck's novel: 'Of Mice and Men' reflects the culture of 1930's America. The main focus of my essay is the treatment of women and prejudice towards black people. Of Mice and Men was written by John Steinbeck. John Steinbeck was born on February 27, 1902, in Salinas, California. His father worked as the regions treasurer while his mother, Olive (Hamilton) Steinbeck, a former school teacher, fostered Steinbeck's love of reading and the written word. During summers he worked as a hired help on nearby ranches. After graduating from Salinas High School in 1919, Steinbeck attended Stanford University. His first novel, Cup of Gold was published in 1929, but attracted little attention. His two subsequent novels, The Pastures of Heaven and To a God Unknown, were also poorly received by the literary world. His book 'Of Mice and Men' was published in 1937. At the time, America was still suffering the harsh result of the depression and the travelling workers, who form the basis of the novel, were very much within the "consciousness of a nation separated by wealth" but they were still driven by the idea of 'the American dream'. The story is a tragic story about George Milton and Lennie Small, one simple and one a cynical man. They are both moving from ranch to ranch searching for jobs. ...read more.


They wouldn't allow him to enter the bunk house. Although he is lonely, he would rather stay away from the ranch workers because of the way they treat him. "He kept his distance and demanded that other keep theirs." However, he still wanted to have friends. "Know what he done Christmas? Brang a gallon of whisky right in here and says, "drink hearty, boys. Christmas comes but once a year."" This shows that Crooks only gets to go in the bunk house once a year. Generally he keeps himself away from the bunk house and has a room to himself. This is because of the boundaries between black and white people. Crooks knows that he is not welcome in the bunk house; 'I ain't wanted in the bunk house and you ain't wanted in my room.' Crooks also knows that he is not welcome because of the colour of his skin: 'Cause I'm black. They play cards in there, but I can't play cause I'm black. They say I stink. Well I tell you, all of you stink to me.' Although he is well educated he doesn't get treated the same way the other men on the ranch get treated. He is one of the most permanent workers on the ranch because he has crooked back which is caused because he got kicked by a horse in the back on the ranch. Crooks gets annoyed when Lennie enters his room because he thinks that Lennie would treat him like the other people on the ranch treat him. ...read more.


Curley's wife died and Crooks wouldn't be able to achieve it because people in the society would never allow him his freedom All the characters had a dream, The American Dream. The dream of Lennie and George was to live "off the fat of the land". They wanted to achieve this dream so Lennie would always want to hear the dream from George. Crooks also wanted to share their dreams and so did Candy. But their dream was ruined because of the death of Curley's wife. She also had a dream. Her dream was to become an actress in Hollywood. She married Curley because she thought that she could make a lot of money and work in Hollywood. Her dream would never be realised because she died cruelly. In conclusion, I think that John Steinbeck's novel 'Of Mice and Men' reflects a lot about the culture of 1930's America. It focuses on various different factors; racism, the treatment of women and the jobs that most American men had. He also shows that one thing can ruin everyone's dream. The death of Curley's wife damaged George and Lennie's dream. Curley's wife was killed unintentionally by Lennie. George knew that if he didn't kill Lennie the ranch workers would kill him, so he decided to shoot his only real friend. Crooks and Curley's wife are similar in some ways. They are similar in the way they are treated. They are both lonely. They have nobody to talk to. They also have an American dream. Loneliness is a result of being marginalized by society and Steinbeck shows this clearly in his novel. ?? ?? ?? ?? - 1 -Kibria Ali ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe essays

  1. Holiday to America

    But we did get there in the end. We all ran into the house to check out where we would be staying for the next seven days. It was a really nice bungalow with everything you could ever possibly need even satellite television and a water bed. The best part of the house for me was the pool,

  2. Is George a good friend to Lennie in Of Mice And Men

    George lets him imagine this, as it's the only thing that keeps him going. George uses this fantasy to his advantage by saying that if Lennie complies with his every command we can have the rabbits and if not then he will have none.

  1. 'Revenge Is Sweet'.

    She gazed around for a bit, as if she knew I was there. This made me worried because it may have spoiled my perfect moment. I didn't care. I followed after her at her walking pace. I heard someone breathing really heavily.

  2. Dreams and visions that motivate the characters of "Of Mice and Men"

    Steinbeck's use of language here convey George's feelings, his rhythmic tone and deep voice suggest that he is in an almost trance- like mode, fantasising about his dream. This is very ironic however, seeing that George actually ends this vision himself.

  1. Wishes and Dream

    Now he does not know where he can go. He walks again after say good-bye to all his friends and teacher including Mr. Miroslav and Mrs. Fewrell.

  2. How significant a character is Crooks in the novel " Of Mice And Men"

    He refuses to be hurt again after being abused so many times, his physical condition is so very similar to his mental state of mind: - damaged. On numerous occasions he has mentioned or emphasised rather, how he differs from the others; his colour.

  1. Chinese Culture

    manpower was a short, lean, and thin man with absolutely no visible fats or muscle riding the cycle with 3 people sitting in the trailer. He was pushing with all his might to move the cycle forward so he could get it running, within a minute

  2. Influence of Culture and Stigmatisation on HIV transmission programme

    We have to keep advising the mothers on personal hygiene, nutrition, drug taking and other issues, but some women disappear soon after delivering when they know of their HIV-positive status." 24-year-old Nthabiseng Ranyali was one of the expecting mothers. She made up her mind to go through HIV testing to protect her unborn child.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work