Read 'OMAM' Chapter 3; then, answer the following (2-3 sentences/question):
1. What does Slim find funny? Why? What does this tell you about relationships on the ranch?
2. What would George do if he were really smart? Why is this significant?
3. Why do George and Lennie travel together? What can you infer about Lennie's early life?
4. What did George once do to Lennie? Why did he never do it again?
5. What does Whit show Slim? Why is this significant?
6. For whom is Curley looking? For whom is he really looking? What does this tell you about Curley?
7. Who interrupts George and Lennie's conversation about the ranch? What does he want? Why is this significant?
8. What happens between Lennie and Curley? Why does it happen? What does it tell you about Curley? What does it tell you about Lennie?
9. How does Slim handle the situation? How does this relate to our discussion from class regarding the ranch society?
Get them done by Sunday because a response is coming your way on Monday.
Notes from class:
11/9 – Contin. of “Dream” & “A Dream Deferred” in rel. to OMAM:
L&G’s dream motivates them to work in unsavory professions to one day own their own ranch (to be beholden only to themselves, not a boss – work to survive, not to prosper from a monetary standpoint).
• This dream is really George’s; however, Lennie is a part of it b/c he is George’s companion. As previously mentioned, the ranch is a microcosm of society, but really is also its own society dictated by its inhabitants – on the ranch, others do not have long-term plans or ambitions.
• Not only this, but they also do not understand companionship as evidenced by Carlson’s calloused goading of Candy (old swamper) to euthanize his dog.
• To Carlson, he views the dog as an interchangeable part (much like the workers are on the ranch). Carlson’s significance in the story is that he represents the typical worker – no family, no friends/companions, no hobbies or pursuits, no goals/dreams. To Carlson, like many of the other workers, life is work, getting paid, spending the money on frivolous pursuits – i.e. drinking, gambling, consorting with prostitutes – and returning to work to start the cycle over again until death.
• To Candy, his dog is his only friend and companion – he feels a connection to this animal as he’s raised him since his infancy. Carlson does not understand this connection. To him, the dog smells and therefore must be shot – as blunt and emotionless as that b/c the ranch is not a place of connections or even feelings.
• Carlson doesn’t have the capacity to see the greater meaning of this relationship.
• There is a figurative parallel b/w Candy and his dog – on the ranch, you are only as good as your usefulness. Once you’re no longer useful, you’re discarded b/c you’re simply a part in a machine that can be replaced. Much in the same way that Candy’s dog is discarded, as Candy ages and becomes less and less helpful on the ranch, he too will be “put out to pasture.”
• This understanding is why you do not see relationships develop b/w workers b/c one minute a person can be there and the next he can be gone.
• This sets George and Lennie’s relationship as ATYPICAL in comp. to the rel. b/w other workers on the ranch, which you will see expounded upon in CH 3.
• This sets up the above-mentioned theme The need for companionship.
Part of truly understanding a character is both observing what an author writes about a character (direct characterization) v. what is implied through how other characters feel about a character (indirect characterization).
• Ex. what characters say about Curley’s wife – “tart” or “jailbait” – v. who she actually is – a lonely, isolated young woman.
English Assignments 7-12
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