Saturday, 6 February 2010

On this day...

John Steinbeck's novella, 'Of Mice and Men' was published in 1937. Following on from the success of 'Tortilla Flat', Steinbeck's newest book was very much in keeping with the themes which had, and would continue to dominate his works. Born in Salinas in 1902, the Great Depression and its effect on the 'American Dream' concept haunted Steinbeck and so manifested itself in literary form. 'Of Mice and Men' exemplifies this, the narrative following two migrant ranchers in search of work, and the struggles and hardships they encounter. Now required reading in numerous school systems, it had previously been a target for censorship, and indeed is listed as the fourth most challenged book of the 21st century by th American Library Association. The novella was written in such a way as to ease transferral to stage, and subsequently many adaptations have followed, the first in the same year as its publication.

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