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About this Lecture
In this module, we provide a broad introduction to the world of ‘Of Mice and Men’, focusing in particular on the changing fortunes of the United States before and after the Great Depression, Steinbeck’s own work as a “bindlestiff”, the themes of desperation, hope and the American Dream, and the significance of the title – taken from a poem by Robert Burns.
In this course, Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) explores John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men. We begin with a broad introduction to the world of the novel, focusing in particular on life in America during the Great Depression and the idea of the American Dream. After that, we go through the novel section by section, providing close reading and analysis of character, plot, themes, motifs, language, symbolism – and more.
Note: Page numbers refer to the Penguin edition of the text. Students using a different version of the novel may encounter slight differences in page numbers.
John McRae is Special Professor of Language in Literature Studies and Teaching Associate in the School of English at Nottingham University, and holds Visiting Professorships in China, Malaysia, Spain and the USA. He is co-author of The Routledge History of Literature in English with Ron Carter, and also wrote The Language of Poetry, Literature with a Small 'l' and the first critical edition of Teleny by Oscar Wilde and others.
Cite this Lecture
McRae, J. (2018, August 30). Steinbeck: Of Mice and Men - Introduction [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/steinbeck-of-mice-and-men/introduction-34e74455-f7c2-4867-a9a2-860d010693f6
McRae, J. "Steinbeck: Of Mice and Men – Introduction." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 31 Aug 2018, https://massolit.io/courses/steinbeck-of-mice-and-men/introduction-34e74455-f7c2-4867-a9a2-860d010693f6