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“Of Mice and Men” – Pages 50-51 (old book)

Uploaded by ashchap on Nov 24, 2002

“Of Mice and Men” – Pages 50-51 (old book)

The extract I am studying is on pages 50 and 51 in the old book, where the men are trying to convince candy that his dog should be shot. This is a significant scene, as although the reader does not know it, it is depicting the death of Lennie at the end of the book; candy doesn't want to have the dog shot, but it has to be as it is physically useless and crippled, George doesn't want to have Lennie killed, but he has to be as he is mentally useless and crippled. The same gun is used and Lennie and the dog are both shot in the same manner (in the back of the head). However, there is one difference between the scenes – later, after the dog has been shot by Carlson, candy says “I ought to of shot that dog myself, George. I shouldn’t ought to of let no stranger shoot my dog”. George remembers this when the time comes to shoot Lennie, the other men would shoot Lennie, but George has to make sure that he gets there first so that he can do it himself.

The main purpose of this part of the story is to show how close candy is to his dog, and to show the tension in the atmosphere and candy’s unwillingness to let Carlson shoot his dog. This is achieved using varying sentence lengths, verbs and adjectives and also by repeating certain phrases.

At the start of the quote (“Candy looked a long time at slim(half way down p50)…he subdued one hand with the other, and(end of p51)”) there is a lot of short sentences and a lot of dialogue. This is because the men are talking casually, and it sets a slightly tense tone, as people aren’t saying much. The mood is also sort of slow, as ‘gentle’ verbs and adjectives such as “softly and hopelessly” and “the gently-pulling leash.” Make it seem relaxed, but at the same time tense.

Later on in the extract, the sentences are a lot longer and there is a lot less dialogue, as the scene is being described, and the room is in silence, which shows that the atmosphere has become a lot more tense since the dog has left.

There are two phrases repeated throughout the extract: “Candy stared at the ceiling” and the fact that the...

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Uploaded by:   ashchap

Date:   11/24/2002

Category:   Of Mice And Men

Length:   3 pages (603 words)

Views:   2305

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