The ranch in Of Mice and Men is a very hostile environment.

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The ranch in Of Mice and Men is a very hostile environment.

The ranch in ‘Of Mice and Men’ is a very hostile environment. What do

we learn about life during the Great Depression from John Steinbeck’s


In this essay I aim to describe how life was like on a ranch during

the great depression in John Steinbeck’s novel ‘Of Mice and Men’.

Steinbeck was born on February 27, 1902 in Salinas, California. This

is where the book is set, in the Salinas valley. The books exact

location is in Soledad near the Salinas Valley. From research I found

out that Steinbeck chose the title ‘Of Mice and Men’ because of a poem

which inspired him by Robert Burns. Steinbeck wrote ‘Of Mice and Men’

hoping that future generations would realise the difficulties millions

of Americans like himself were facing.

The great depression was the cause of all these difficulties. It all

started because of the Wall Street crash (American stock exchange),

this made many businesses go bankrupt and were forced to close down.

Many banks also became bankrupt losing everyone’s savings, so people

were left with no money. Over 15 million Americans became jobless

during the great depression and many were left homeless because they

could not afford to keep the payments of the houses they had rented

out. Some people were left with almost nothing and committed suicide

because of this. The great depression really was a depressing time for

most Americans. The depression caused people to become migrant

workers, they had to leave home to find work. Families were split up

and many men and women became very lonely. We learn a lot about life

on the ranch during the great depression from Steinbeck’s novel.

Life on the ranch was a very unfriendly place....

... middle of paper ... for her to socialise with.

Life on the ranch was also unpleasant because of the stressful

conditions that the ranch hands had to go through. The ranch hands

worked 6 day long weeks and had to work 11 hours a day in Steinbeck’s

book. Life was stressful for a few conditions of being lonely, being

away from family and having to move from place to place to try and

find work.

From reading Steinbeck’s book ‘Of Mice and Men’, I have learnt a lot

about how life was like during the great depression. I have also

learnt how hard life was on the ranch and what caused the

difficulties. ‘Of Mice and Men’ has been an interesting read and it is

best book I have read from the period of time when this book was

written in. I now understand why the depression had such a big effect

on the quality of life in America and why life on the ranch was a

hostile environment.

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