Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

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Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Steinbeck's career has ranged from novelist to journalist to playwright. He has been acclaimed for novels such as Of Mice and Men and The Grapes of Wrath. In novels such as these, aspects of Steinbeck's life history are evident. It is also seen that most of his novels focus around the same central theme "the relationship between man and his environment" (Draper 3373).

The theme described is also demonstrated within the novel Of Mice and Men. Steinbeck's past relationships and personal life are a great influence in his work. By delving into Steinbeck's biographies and literary criticisms, a mixture of his life and sympathy for American society was discovered in the novel Of Mice and Men (Draper 3373).

John Steinbeck, born February 27th, 1902, in Salinas, California, worked mainly as a field hand, developing many of his characters from the people whom he worked alongside (Rylant et al. 70). His birthplace of Salinas is of major importance to many of his novels.

When used as a setting, it tends to put more importance towards the theme "the relationship between man and his environment." (Draper 3373). Steinbeck also continued to work as a lab assistant and field hand in order to pay for his tuition at Stanford University for six years, which was fruitless because he never aspired to receive a degree ("Steinbeck, John Ernst"). His first novel was Cup of Gold (1929), which was a failure, but soon after he came back with the novel Tortilla Flat (1935), which brought him to success. Soon after, in 1937, his novels Of Mice and Men and The Red Pony, were created and from these books his writing became recognized (Rylant et al. 70-1). Steinbeck, in his fiction, displayed contradicting feelings. He clearly shows his sympathy for American society yet also he exhibits his displeasure with it (Draper 3373).

The first time Steinbeck wrote for a newspaper publication was when he wrote for William Randolph Hearst's morning newspaper named the American in 1925 (French 13). He broke into journalism during World War II when he began writing about the war and in addition wrote articles about the war for the government (Rylant et al. 71). Steinbeck was always Pro-America and was continuously supporting American causes. An example of this was during the Great Depression ("Steinbeck, John Ernst").

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