Novels and Stories 1932–1937: The Pastures of Heaven / To a God Unknown / Tortilla Flat / In Dubious Battle / Of Mice and Men by John SteinbeckJohn Steinbeck, from the very start of his career, evoked the landscape and people of central California with lyrical intensity and unflinching frankness. The Library of America presents for the first time in one volume Steinbeck’s early writings, which expressed his abiding concerns for community, social justice, and the elemental connection between nature and human society. In prose that blends the vernacular and the incantatory, the local and the mythic, these five works chart Steinbeck’s evolution into one of the greatest and most enduring popular of American novelists.
The Pastures of Heaven (1932), a collection of interrelated stories, delineates the troubled inner lives and sometimes disastrous fates of families living in a seemingly tranquil California valley. The surface realism of Steinbeck’s first mature work is enriched by hints of uncanny forces at work beneath.
“Deep down it’s mine, right to the center of the world,” says Salinas Valley farmer Joseph Wayne about his land in John Steinbeck’s To a God Unknown (1933). A sense of primeval magic dominates the novel as the farmer reverts to pagan nature worship and begins a tortuous journey toward catastrophe and ultimate understanding.
Steinbeck’s sympathetic depiction of the raffish paisons of Tortilla Flat (1935), a ramshackle district above Monterey, first won him popular attention. The Flat’s tenderhearted, resourceful, mildly corrupt, over-optimistic characters are a triumph of life-affirming humor.
In Dubious Battle (1936) plunges into the political struggle of the 1930s and paints a vigorous fresco of a migrant fruit-pickers’ strike. Anticipating the collective portraiture of The Grapes of Wrath, Steinbeck poignantly traces the surges and shifts of group behavior.
With Of Mice and Men (1937), Steinbeck secured his status as one of the most influential American writers. Lennie and George, itinerant farmhands held together in the face of deprivation only by the frailest of dreams, have long since passed into American mythology. This novel, which Steinbeck called “such a simple little thing,” is now recognized as a masterpiece of concentrated emotional power.
John Steinbeck: Voice of America
By Steinbeck was back in California, living near scenic Lake Tahoe and working as a handyman at a resort. In he published his first novel, Cup of Gold. The book was a quasi-historical account of the adventures of real-life pirate Henry Morgan in Panama, a country that Steinbeck had never visited. Unsurprisingly, the book was not very good. Steinbeck's best work always drew in some way from personal experience—from places he had visited or people he had interviewed. In his later years, after considerably more critical and commercial success, Steinbeck indulged his interest in historical fiction with a few more themed novels. A year after publishing his first book, Steinbeck married Carol Henning and the couple moved into a tiny cottage in coastal Pacific Grove, California.
John Ernst Steinbeck Jr. Steinbeck dropped out of college and worked as a manual laborer before achieving success as a writer. His works often dealt with social and economic issues. John Steinbeck wrote 31 books over the course of his career. Two poor migrant workers, George and Lennie, are working for the American dream in California during the Great Depression. Lennie, who has a mild mental disability, is steadfastly faithful to his friend George, but he has a habit of getting into trouble. Their goal: to own an acre of land and a shack.
John Steinbeck was one of the greatest American writers of the twentieth century. He liked to examine the working class, and his novel The Grapes of Wrath accomplished this so well that it won a Pulitzer Prize. Although you have probably studied John Steinbeck at one point or another in school, how much do you really know about him? John Steinbeck's full name was John Ernst Steinbeck. He was born on February 27th in
In , Salinas, California was a prosperous farming community, founded about fifty years earlier. Only fifteen miles from the Pacific, the mile long Salinas Valley was cool and often foggy, temperatures moderate, and the soil rich beyond measure. Ranchers and farmers thrived. By the time he went to college in , the valley was about to ship lettuce across America in refrigerated railroad cars. John Steinbeck was born in Salinas in , in a stately home on Central Ave now open as a popular luncheon spot.
John Steinbeck's books depict a realistic and tender image of his childhood and life spent in "Steinbeck Country," the region around the city of Monterrey, California. The world-renowned novelist, playwright, essayist, and short-story writer was born in Salinas, California, in Growing up in a rural town, he spent his summers working on local ranches which exposed him to the harsh lives of migrant workers. These experiences would provide much of the inspiration for some of his most celebrated works such as " Of Mice and Men. Steinbeck published 30 books, including several that were well-respected by both critics and the public.
Questions and answers on John Steinbeck. J ohn Steinbeck , born in Salinas, California, came from a family of moderate means. He worked his way through college at Stanford University but never graduated. In he went to New York, where he tried for a few years to establish himself as a free-lance writer, but he failed and returned to California. After publishing some novels and short stories, Steinbeck first became widely known with Tortilla Flat , a series of humorous stories about Monterey paisanos. After the rough and earthy humour of Tortilla Flat, he moved on to more serious fiction, often aggressive in its social criticism, to In Dubious Battle , which deals with the strikes of the migratory fruit pickers on California plantations. This was followed by Of Mice and Men , the story of the imbecile giant Lennie, and a series of admirable short stories collected in the volume The Long Valley