John Steinbeck, author of many classic American novels, greatly influenced modern American literature. Steinbeck often referred to the Salinas Valley of California in his writing. He often referred to the settlers and the adversities they had faced during the migration to the Salinas Valley area. With novels such as Of Mice And Men and The Grapes Of Wrath, Steinbeck explained the harsh reality of the severe hardships the settlers faced to accomplish the American Dream. These novels share many similarities in regard to their themes. To understand Steinbeck’s work, we must first understand Steinbeck.
John Steinbeck was born in Salinas, California in 1902. His father was a treasurer for the county. Steinbeck’s mother was a school teacher. His mother taught him to appreciate books. Steinbeck attended high school locally. During his summers, he worked on ranches and farms to earn money. After high school, he studied marine biology at Stanford University. By the late 1920's, he moved back to California without an academic degree. Steinbeck had never planned to work in the field of his major. He had always known he would be a writer.
In 1929, now living in the Sierra Nevada mountains, Steinbeck was given an advance from a publisher to write a book. The publisher gave him $250. This book, called Cup Of Gold, failed to make a profit. Steinbeck did not get discouraged. By 1935, he released a novel called Tortilla Flat. This novel earned him recognition as well as money. Steinbeck was paid thousands of dollars for the film rights to this novel. From this, Steinbeck went on to write many more great American novels. These novels include Of Mice And Men and The Grapes Of Wrath which were both written in the late 1930's as well as East Of Eden, written in 1952. Steinbeck eventually earned a Nobel Peace Prize for his works. John Steinbeck died in 1968 having written countless classic novels.
In Of Mice And Men, the main characters, George and Lennie, are poor migrant workers who travel throughout the Salinas Valley in search of work. Throughout the novel, George and Lennie are in search of the American Dream. They crave the opportunity to work, land to call their own and being their own bosses by working off of that land. George and Lennie feel that they are different than other migrant workers because they have dreams and they rely on each other.
George and Lennie find work on a farm “bucking barley.” On this farm they meet the laborers as well as other characters of this novel including Candy (an older laborer), Crooks (the black stable hand), the boss, Curley (a short man who happens to be the bosses son), Curley’s wife (a lonely woman easily excited by the attention of men), Carlson (a...