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Exam Questions on Of Mice and Men. NEAB English Literature. Higher Tier. How does Steinbeck create a sense of insecurity in the novel? You should write about: ·    Why some characters may feel insecure ·    Uses of language ·    The contribution of the settings

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exam questions on of mice and men

Exam Questions on Of Mice and Men

NEAB English Literature

higher tier
Higher Tier

How does Steinbeck create a sense of insecurity in the novel?

You should write about:

·    Why some characters may feel insecure

·    Uses of language

·    The contribution of the settings

·    Other features which create a sense of insecurity.

higher tier3
Higher Tier

Of Mice and Men ends where it begins, with George and Lenny, alone by the pool.

What is your response to the ending of the novel?

Write about:

·    Your feelings about George’s decision to shoot Lenny

·   Ways in which Steinbeck prepares us for this ending

·    Why the writer chooses to end the story in this way

·    Whether the ending suggests that the friendship between George and Lenny was pointless.

higher tier4
Higher Tier

Hopes and dreams help people to survive, even if they can never become real.

How true is this for characters in Of Mice and Men?

higher tier5
Higher Tier

Show how John Steinbeck explores the complex relationship between George and Lennie. 

You should write about:

·      What keeps them together, and the difficulties they each have

·      How the writer brings out differences between them

·      How they are different from other people on the farm

·      What you think Steinbeck’s purpose was in writing about this relationship.

foundation tier
Foundation Tier

Remind yourself of the description of Lennie’s fight with Curley in the extract below. 

Write about the importance of this passage in Of Mice and Men.

 Write about:

·    The different aspects of Lennie shown in the passage

·    What is revealed about the relationship between George and Lennie, and about Curley

·    How this passage links with other parts of the novel

·    The importance of the passage in the novel as a whole.

foundation tier7
Foundation Tier

Many characters in Of Mice and Men are shown to be lonely.

Write about loneliness in the novel.

You should write about:

·    Characters who are lonely

·    How the write shows their loneliness

·    The differences and similarities between lonely characters

·    What you think the writer is saying about loneliness

foundation tier8
Foundation Tier

Find the passage in the novel where Lennie kills Curley’s wife, from the description of the barn to the point when Lennie leaves to go to the brush.

Write about:

·   Why the writer begins this passage with the dead puppy

·   Why Lennie and Curley’s wife behave in the way they do

·   How the writer makes the death seem unavoidable

·   Whether you were surprised when you first read about her death, and why.

foundation tier9
Foundation Tier

Of Mice and Men shows us that people can be cruel, or kind, or sometimes a mixture of both.

Compare three characters.

Write about:

· The ways in which the different characters are cruel, or kind, or a mixture of both

· Why they behave as they do

· How you respond to them

· How Steinbeck writes about them to make you respond this way.

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Exam Topics
  • Back to Table of Contents
  • Below are some possible essay topics suitable for GCSE Level questions on 'Of Mice and Men'. Use these topics for revision by writing or planning the essays and comparing your work with that of a friend.
  • The killing of Candy's old dog foreshadowed Lennie's death. Describe the two killings, pointing out any similarities and differences between them.
  • When all the other ranch hands go to town, Lennie, Crooks and Candy are left behind. Describe what each of these three do after the others leave, and explain what they have in common that causes them to be left out. See MODEL ANSWER
  • Describe in some detail the farm that George and Lennie dream of owning one day. When Candy and Crooks join the dream, what part do they foresee themselves playing?
  • Curley's wife appears three times in the novel. Briefly describe what takes place on each occasion. On which occasion does she reveal the most about herself, and what is it?
  • 'I like to pet nice things with my fingers, soft things.' Trace in detail the 'sof' things' that Lennie pets in the novel, showing that the petting grows more serious as the novel goes on.
  • Describe in some detail the incident where Lennie crushes Curley's hand. What does this incident reveal about each of these two characters?
  • While Curley is physically aggressive towards Lennie, his wife is sexually provocative. Show how these two characters create trouble for Lennie, and combine to cause his death.
  • Many people in the novel suffer from disappointment. Choose any three of the following characters and discuss what reasons they have to be disappointed about their life: Crooks - Curley - George - Candy
  • Which character do you feel most sorry for in this story? Explain your choice by referring closely to the events of the novel.
  • Slim is the only character in the novel who is not handicapped in some way. Do you agree?
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