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englisch artikel (Interpretation und charakterisierung)

Of mice and men - by john steinbeck





The Author: - Real name is John Ernst Steinbeck
- he was born in 1902 in Salinas - California
- Studied marine biology at Stanford University
- Held several jobs including laboratory assistant, fruit picker, construction worker at Madison Square Garden in NYC and he was a reporter for NEW YORK AMERICAN
- During this time he wrote short stories
- 1929 wrote his first novel "Cup Of Gold"
- 1930 he found a publisher

- 1935 he became a full-time writer
- during World War II he was a special writer for the United States

- 1940 he won the Pulitzer Prize
- 1962 Steinbeck was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature
- he died at the 20th of December in 1968 in NYC


The Book:
- is about a story of two travelling farm workers, who yearn for some sort of home

- it was published in 1937
- divided into 15 chapters

Setting:
- plays in the beginning of the 20th century on a ranch near Soledad - California


Main Characters:
LENNIE
- very large, strong but gentle man with a large face, pale eyes, wide shoulders and the mind of a child
- is very forgetful
- loves stroking nice things, specially animals
- works on ranches and travels with George, who looks after him
- cannot think how to do things himself, but he always obeys orders
GEORGE
- is a small and quick man with a dark face, restless eyes and a thin nose
- is Lennies friend and looks after him and tries to keep him out of trouble

- is very honest
CANDY
- is an old man, who works on the ranch too
- lost his hand years ago while doing his job as farmer
- becomes friends with George and Lennie
- has a very old dog

CURLEY
- the son of the owner of the ranch, where George and Lennie work
- is always looking for fights for showing, how strong he is
- doesn't like Lennie


CURLEY'S WIFE
- a pretty young woman who tries to make all the men on the ranch falling in love with her
- also flirts with Lennie, but she doesn't realize, that he is very simple


Plot:
- story starts in one evening at the Salinas River
- George and Lennie worked on a ranch in Weed (a town nearby)
- Before they arrive at the ranch where they are going to work for a month
- And they become friends with an old man called Candy and meet Curley , who wants to fight with Lennie
- George and Lennie meet Curley's wife
- Lennie is fascinated of her and loves her, since he has been seen her the first time
- Lennie gets a little puppy from another man one the ranch
- George tells this man (his name is Slim) about Lennie
- Candy, the farmer, has a very old dog that hasn't got any teeth and can hardly move
- The other man doesn't like this dog, because he smells worse
- Candy doesn't want to shoot his dog, because he has got him since he was a puppy
- This job was undertaken by another man on the ranch
- Candy tells George: "I should have shot my dog myself, I shouldn't have let a stranger shoot my dog."
- One day, Curley provokes a fight with Lennie and Lennie injures Curley
- On a Sunday afternoon, Curley's wife begins to flirt with Lennie in the barn

- She wants him to stroke her hair
- When he strokes too strong she starts screaming and Lennie wants her to stop
- He shakes her stronger and stronger and so, he breaks her neck
- Lennie runs away, back to the river, where the story started
- Another men find the dead woman and her husband Curley knows, the Lennie must have killed her
- He decided to kill him and starts looking for him
- George knows, where Lennie is and sends the other men in the wrong direction
- He steels a pistol of one of the other men and goes to the river alone and finally he find Lennie there
- George shoots Lennie in the back of his head, so that he is dead immediately and doesn't feel any pain


Conflict:
- is the inner one of George
- His friend Lennie has killed Curley's wife
- If he doesn't shoot Lennie, Curley would do it
- Then George maybe feels guilty like Candy, who has not shot his old dog himself
- But to kill his friend is not easy for George



Point of view:

- omniscient narrator


Further Analysis:
- written in Past

- colloquial style
- tone is mostly serious, sometimes emotional
- scenic mode (often direct speech, action presented in detail)
- some stylistic devices:

repetitions (Lennie often repeat, what George tells him)

interior monologues (Lennie speaks to himself many times)

ellipses (e.g. )

Sources:

- The book
- German one
- Dictionary - Microsoft Encarta 2001

 
 




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