Setting plays a significant role in the presentation of Steinbeck’s novella. Explore the ways Steinbeck presents setting in one other part of the story.
John Steinbeck uses setting in order to offer insight into the background behind which the novella is written as well as to engage the audience.
To begin with, Steinbeck uses setting in order to help people understand the context of his novella. For example, in section two, he describes the bunkhouse as having “white washed walls” and “unpainted floors”. The colour white has connotations of simple and basic. This use of colour allows Steinbeck to effectively depict the lack of money available to decorate the bunkhouse due to the Great Depression. Although, some may argue that, the bunkhouse was not very hospitable because the workers did not stay on the ranch for very long, as in the 1930’s the men had to often move around in order to find work because of the Great Depression. Therefore, by using colours, John Steinbeck is successful in explaining to the audience the background to his novella.
Furthermore in section two, Steinbeck mentions “the morning sun throwing a bright dust-laden bar through one of the windows and in and out of the beam flies shot like rushing stars”. By personifying the sun through the word “threw” and the simile “flies shot like rushing starts”, gives the audience a vivid image of the setting. In addition, this simile creates an ominous feeling and makes the audience very wary of what is going to happen further into the story. Some may argue that, flies could be symbolic and could foreshadow future events. Moreover, Steinbeck juxtaposes language; an example of this is the use of the “sun” and “stars” and the “dust laden bars”. It could be said that these opposites represent George and Lennie. However, some may argue that the “dust laden bar” suggests that the end of the story will be tinted with negativity, thus, creating forewarning. By using these linguistic techniques,...
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