Spoken English Essay

571 Words3 Pages
Steinbeck uses the great depression as the backdrop for the setting of mice and men. It is inevitable that the pressures of the great depression were there are no jobs, security: money and a worry over their future are conducive to conflict between the characters. Steinbeck introduces the conflict between George and Lennie at the beginning of the novel when George says to Lennie “I could get along so easy and so nice if I didn’t have you on my tail. I could live so easy and maybe have a girl.” The phrase “on my tail” shows that George feels that Lennie is constantly following him around and slowing him back in life. George may think that without Lennie, he could be living the American dream. This could show his inner conflict and that he’s fooling himself because deep down, he knows that he couldn’t really achieve it. More conflict arises when George says to Lennie, “I got you! You can’t keep a job and you lose me ever’ job I get.” Steinbeck uses the repetition of the word “you” to demonstrate the anger and resentment George has for Lennie and is the direct cause for conflict in the novel. Steinbeck’s abbreviation of the word “ever’” (every) shows that George is spitting his words out in contempt and anger. George uses the word “job” repetitively to emphasise the importance of work during the depression and the scarcity of a “job”. Further resentment towards Lennie arises when George says to Slim “if that crazy bastard’s foolin’ around too much. Jus’ kick him out, Slim.” The phrase “jus’ kick him out’ implies that he demands quite a lot and would get into a lot of conflict between people. The way that he says this implies that he is frustrated with the situation that he would rather be on his own than have to provide for the two of them all on his own. Later on in the novel “Lennie looked up helplessly at George, and then he got up and tried to retreat.”
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