Of Mice and Men
John Steinbeck took the title of his 1937 novel Of Mice and Men from the Robert Burns poem ‘To a Mouse’, written in 1785. The poem’s line “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft agley” is often paraphrased in English as “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry [or astray]”.
You can find a copy of Burns’ poem here.
You will find the novel on the Library shelf at F STE, and the 1992 movie adaption of the novel is found at DVD0117. There’s also an excellent book in the Library entitled John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, by Brian Williams. It deals in depth with the background to the novel. You’ll find it at 813.09 STE
A movie of Steinbeck’s novel was first made in 1939. Here’s the trailer for the 1992 movie starring John Malkovich and Gary Sinese.
About the novel and the author:
Top 10 Notes: Of Mice and Men
SparkNotes on video
The Setting of the novel:
The Dust Bowl and Great Depression in 1930s America:
There are several longer documentaries about the Dust Bowl on YouTube as well.
The following clip outlines the conflict which resulted from the difficult conditions and hardships facing those living in the 1930s during the economic depression and the Panhandle dust storms.
Study Notes on the novel: Plot summary, themes, characters etc.:
“Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don’t belong no place….With us it ain’t like that. We got a future…. An’ why? Because…because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that’s why.” George Milton
Shmoop (This a very colloquial summary, yet it gets to the core of the book. Make sure you read the Intro!)
Sparknotes (plot, characters, themes, analysis, quotations etc.)