Of Mice and MenJohn SteinbeckGenre: Fiction; tragedyFirst Publication: 1937Narrator: Third-person omniscientProtagonists: George and LennieAntagonists: Curley; society; the cruel, predatory nature of human lifeSetting: 1930s, South of Soledad, California
John SteinbeckBorn in Salinas, CA in 1902Died in 1968Won the Nobel Prize for his novel Grapes of Wrath
History to 1920sAfter World War I, a recession led to a drop in the market price of farm crops, which meant that farmers were forced to produce more goods in order to earn the same amount of money.Farmers bought more land and invested in expensive agricultural equipment, which plunged them into debt.
Great DepressionThe stock market crash of 1929 forced banks to foreclose on mortgages and collect debts. Unable to pay their creditors, many farmers lost their property and were forced to find other work.Nations unemployment rate skyrocketed peaking at nearly twenty-five percent in 1933.
Conditions in the U.S. 1930sIn 1930, California had 5.7 million residents, and the population shrank as 120,000 Mexicans were repatriated.
Move to CaliforniaIn the 1930s, farmers from the Midwestern Dust Bowl states, especially Oklahoma and Arkansas, began to move to California; 250,000 arrived by 1940. During the 1930s, some 2.5 million people left the Plains states.
Into the bookSetting: Soledad, CA
Prereading"The best laid plans of mice and men go oft astray." - Robert BurnsThis saying so impressed John Steinbeck that he titled his novel after it. What does this saying mean to you?Write a paragraph analyzing this quote. Relate it to your own life. (sec. 3)
Lennie a large, lumbering, childlike migrant worker. Due to his mild mental disability, Lennie completely depends upon George, his friend and traveling companion, for guidance and protection. The two men share a vision of a farm that they will own together, a vision that Lennie believes in wholeheartedly. Gentle and kind, Lennie nevertheless does not understand his own strength. His love of petting soft things, such as small animals, dresses, and peoples hair, leads to disaster.
George A small, wiry, quick-witted man who travels with, and cares for, Lennie. Although he frequently speaks of how much better his life would be without his caretaking responsibilities, George is obviously devoted to Lennie. Georges behavior is motivated by the desire to protect Lennie and, eventually, deliver them both to the farm of their dreams. Though George is the source of the often-told story of life on their future farm, it is Lennies childlike faith that enables George to actually believe his account of their future.
Due Friday, Nov. 14 Reading Section 2 pgs. 17-37Write two paragraphs, one for each character Section 3 Writing -40 pts.
Write about Lennie and Georges characters. Find one quote for each character that best describes his personality. Cite the quote i.e. (Steinbeck, pg 2). Explain why this quote characterizes each person.
Chapter Two Vocabulary apprehensive (adj.): anxious; fearfularchly (adv.): playfullybridled (v.): to pull one's head back in anger or pride; especially when one feels one has been offendedbuckers (n.): people who buck grain bagscalculating (adj.): shrewd; schemingcesspool (n.): a deep hole in the ground into which sewage from sinks, toilets, etc. is drained.cockier (adj.): To be cocky is to be conceited, overbearing, and aggressive.complacently (adv.): in a pleased, satisfied mannercultivator (n.): a large farm machine used for cultivation (the preparation of the earth for planting). derogatory (adj.): belittling and insultingdisengage (v.): freedousing (n): to douse is to be drenched with liquid. A dousing refers to someone having been covered with a liquid, in this case water, during a washing.dragfooted (adj.) lame; dragging a lame footgingerly (adv.): in a careful, cautious waygraybacks (n.): lice; parasites. Lice are small, wingless insects that live off the blood of other animals. hatchet face (n): a lean, sharp faceheavy-laden (adj.) heavily loadedinsteps (n.): the parts of the shoes between the toe and the anklejerkline skinnerlaboring (adj.): working, particularly work that involves physical labor.lamely (adv.): To be lame is to be crippled; especially to have an injured leg or foot.lashed (v.): swung around quicklyleaves (n.): pageslevelly (adv.): Something that is level is flat and horizontal. To stare at someone levelly is to stare at that person straight on -- not looking up nor down.lightweight (n.): a boxer who weighs between 127 - 135 poundsliniment (n.): a medicated liquid rubbed on the skin to ease sore muscles and sprains (25)
Vocabulary contmollified (adj.): soothed; pacifiedmules (n): a type of shoe or slipper than does not cover the heal. muzzle (n.): the projecting part (the part that sticks out) of a dogs head that includes the mouth, nose, and jaw.ominously (adv.): in a threatening waypeered (v.): To peer is to look closely or squint at something to see it more clearly.pocket (n.): in this instance, a pocket would be a hollow or cavity in the land filled with gold oreprecede (v.): go before or ahead ofpugnacious (adj.): eager and ready to fightscourges (n.): a scourge is anything that inflicts discomfort or suffering; in this case, any variety of insects and pestsscowled (v.): a scowl is an angry look achieved by frowning and scrunching the eyebrows together.skeptically (adv.): To be skeptical is doubt or question something. George is doubting that the bunk house, and especially his mattress, is really cleanslough (v): get rid ofsquirmed (v.): twisted and turned; wriggledstable buck (n.): a stable is a building where horses are kept. A buck, in this case, is a derogatory word for a black man. A staple buck, then, would be a black man who works in a stable.stocky (adj.): heavily and solidly builtswamper (n.): a handyman; someone who performs odd jobs often involving cleaningtart (n.) a woman of loose morals; one who is prone to be sexually unfaithfultick (n.) mattress coveringticking (n.): the cloth case for a mattress. In this instance, the cloth case was made from burlap.time book (n): a book used to record the hours of workerstrace chains (n): the chains that connect a horse's harness to a vehicletramp (n.): In this case, a tramp is a woman of loose morals who is sexually promiscuousvials (n.): small bottlesviciously (adv.): cruelly; in a mean waywheeler (n.): the horse harnessed nearest to the front wheels of a vehicle (25)
Task for section 2Individually or in pairs, students will be assigned vocabulary words. Find the sentence where the word(s) are being used. Record the sentence.Identify the content of the sentence what is taking place, who is speaking, what is being said, and why?
Section 2 pgs. 16-37 Lennie and George arrive at the farm
Allusions a literary reference to a familiar person, place, thing, or event. All page numbers refer to the Penguin Books edition, 1993. "On his head was a soiled brown Stetson hat...(p. 20)."" 'You got your work slips (p. 21)?' "" 'Well, that glove's fulla vaseline (p. 27).' "" 'An' I bet he's eatin' raw eggs and writin' to the patent medicine houses (p. 32).' "" '...we'll shove off and go up the American River and pan gold (p. 33).' ""His hands, large and lean, were as delicate in their action as those of a temple dancer (p. 34)."
Section 3 pgs.38-65Assignment On a separate sheet of paper, complete a Reading Log while reading section 3. Record information about all the characters. What motivates each character? Record vocabulary words, allusions, and idiomsRecord what you already know, what you learned, and what you would like to know.
Due Tuesday, Nov. 18 60 pts.
Reading Log- 60 pts.Name ____________________________ Chapter _______Date _________________Characters: (8) George, Lennie, Slim, Candy, Curley, Carlson, Crooks (stablebuck), Wilt (young man)What motivates this character? What does he want from life? What is important to him or her?
Setting and Atmosphere (2)Vocabulary (10 words)with definitions, part of speech, and in text sentencesAllusions (5) with page numbers and sentenceIdioms (5) with page numbers and sentenceWhat I understand from this section (1)What I learned from this section (1)What I wonder about after reading this section (1)
Chapter Three Lennie, George, and Candy spend some time with Crooks as they discuss their plans for the future. Read this section closely.Answer the following questions: 1. What are the plans now that Candy is included in Lennie and Georges dream?
2. How does the dream change now that Candy is involved?
More of chapter 4 Saturday night at Crook's room in the barn. All but Crooks, Candy and Lennie go to town. Lennie drops in on Crooks who philosophizes about companionship. Candy drops by and talks of their dreams. Curley's wife shows up and insults them all. Candy brags of their ranch. She infers that Lennie is the machine which got Curley. She threatens Crooks with a lynching. George arrives and all leave Crooks' room.
Chapter 4 Writing TaskIn your binders, make a T chart. List Main Idea on one side, What the Text says on the other.Starting with chapter 4, record the references make to loneliness. Go back through the earlier chapters and record any references to loneliness.
NOTE: References can be things said that show a person is lonely, actions which show the person is lonely, or desires stated that indicate he doesnt want to be lonely.
Chapter 5What is mental retardation? The definition used most often in the United States is from the American Association on Mental Retardatio