Social Historical Context of Mice and Men

Mind Map by , created over 5 years ago

GCSE ENGLISH Mind Map on Social Historical Context of Mice and Men, created by Chloe.Sharland on 05/16/2014.

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Created by Chloe.Sharland over 5 years ago
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Social Historical Context of Mice and Men
1 The treatment of Women
1.1 Curley's wife
1.1.1 Married women were the property of their husbands, young unmarried women who were not prostitutes presented a temptation and threat to itinerant work hands looking for solace and company.
1.1.2 The portrayal of women is limited and unflattering, We learn early on that Lennie and George are on the run from the previous ranch where they worked, due to encoutering trouble there with a women. Misunderstanding Lennie's love of soft things, a women accused him of rape for touching her dress. George berates Lennie for his behaviour, but is convinced that women are the cause of such trouble. Thier enciting sexualtity, he belives, tempts men to behave in ways they would otherwise not.
2 The treatment of Blacks
3 The treatment of the disabled
3.1 No benefits, rights, those who are impaired in some way, Crooks, Candy, Lennie, - their only hope is that they are taken in by someone such as george or a permenant place at the ranch
4 Farming
4.1 Boss + Ranch hands
4.1.1 After World War I, economic and ecological forces brought many rural poor and migrant agricultural workers from the Great Plains states, such as California. Following 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.
4.1.2 To meet this demand for increased productivity, many farmers bought more land and invested in agricultural equipment, which put them in debt. The stock market crash of 1929 made matters worse. Unable to pay their creditors, many farmers lost their property and were forced to find other work. But doing so proved difficult.
4.1.3 Hundreds of thousands of farmers packed up their families and few belongings, and headed for California. Migrant workers came to be known as Okies, for 20% of the farmers were originally from Oklahoma. Okies were often met with scorn (worthlessness) by California farmers and natives, which only made their poverty more unpleasant.
4.1.4 The increase in farming activity across the Great Plains states caused the precious soil to erode. This erosion, coupled with a seven-year drought that began in 1931, turned once fertile grasslands into a desertlike region known as the Dust Bowl.
5 John Steinbeck
5.1 John Steinbeck was born in 1902 in Salinas, California, a region that became the setting for much of his fiction, including Of Mice and Men. As a teenager, he spent his summers working as a hired hand on neighboring ranches, where his experiences of rural California and its people impressed him deeply. In 1919, he enrolled at Stanford University, where he studied intermittently for the next six years before finally leaving without having earned a degree.
6 Biblical refrences
6.1 Steinbeck uses some biblical imagery. This comes from the Christian Holy Book, the Bible, mostly the Old Testament Creation Myth in Genesis. These are most noticeable in Chapters One and Six, the first and last chapters. The links, or symbols, are not exact. They are like echoes. Biblical symbols in Of Mice and Men: the beautiful natural landscape > the garden of Eden, God’s garden > a place of safety, beauty, the setting of man’s first SIN (or crime). Eden is later invaded by evil. Evil is represented by a snake. There is a snake in the first and last chapters of Of Mice and Men. In the final chapter, the snake is eaten. In the Bible, the snake represents sin, evil, the devil, death. Before the first man commits a sin, he is innocent and childlike. Like Lennie. The snake is killed just before Lennie is killed. Evil is removed. But so is Lennie's innocence.
7 The American dream

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