When Does Of Mice and Men Take Place?

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck is a novella that explores the struggles of the American working class during the Great Depression. This article will focus on the user intent of those who search for “when does Of Mice and Men take place”, providing a detailed answer to their question and discussing the historical context in which the story is set.

The Context of Of Mice and Men

Of Mice and Men takes place during the Great Depression in the Salinas Valley, California. Knowing the historical context and background of the novella can help readers understand the time period when the story takes place.

The Great Depression
The Great Depression was a severe economic downturn that lasted from 1929 to the late 1930s. The stock market crash of October 1929 led to a decade of widespread poverty, unemployment and homelessness.

Many people lost their life savings, their homes, and their jobs, and they were forced to live in shantytowns and work for very low wages.
The story of George and Lennie’s struggle to survive during the Great Depression is a reflection of the harsh reality that many people faced at the time.

Steinbeck’s use of realistic language and vivid descriptions brings this historical period to life in Of Mice and Men.
The Salinas Valley
The Salinas Valley is the primary setting of Of Mice and Men.

It is located in central California and is characterized by its fertile soil and Mediterranean climate. Agriculture based on cultivation of lettuce, strawberries, and other crops dominated the region.

READ  Who Dies in Of Mice and Men? 2023 Update

Steinbeck, who grew up near Salinas, often used its landscape, history, and geography as inspiration for his works.
In Of Mice and Men, the Salinas Valley serves as the backdrop to George and Lennie’s adventures.

Key landmarks, such as the Salinas River and the Gabilan Mountains, appear throughout the novella. Understanding the significance of these elements can help readers connect more closely with the story.

When Does Of Mice and Men Take Place?

The story takes place during the 1930s in agricultural California, where life was tough during the Great Depression. As mentioned in the novella, the tale was set “about sixty miles south of Soledad” near the Salinas River.

The Year

The novel was set in the year 1937, a time when America was battling the Great Depression. George and Lennie’s story plays out against the backdrop of widespread unemployment, migration, and poverty.

They both travel to different locations to work as laborers to make ends meet.

Of Mice and Men book

The Season

The book takes place during the summer. Steinbeck’s vivid descriptions of the natural beauty of California bring the setting to life, as he includes many specific details about the time of year when the story happened.

The author did an excellent job of describing the natural landscape, and different page references describing the warm sunny weather that characterizes the setting is particularly noticeable.


Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck takes place during the Great Depression in the 1930s, a period of significant economic and social crisis in American history. The setting is a California ranch where two migrant workers, George and Lennie, dream of owning their own farm.

READ  Robert Mitchum Western: The Ultimate Guide

The novella explores timeless themes of the human condition, such as the pursuit of the American Dream, loneliness, and sacrifice. The period of significance adds to the story’s historical context and sheds light on the challenges faced by ordinary people during a difficult time.

Readers are encouraged to delve deeper into the book’s rich symbolism and profound messages.


Jonathan B. Delfs

I love to write about men's lifestyle and fashion. Unique tips and inspiration for daily outfits and other occasions are what we like to give you at MensVenture.com. Do you have any notes or feedback, please write to me directly: [email protected]

Recent Posts