John Steinbeck's, Of Mice and Men, is a novel recounting the events and conflicts migrant workers confronted during the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl of the 1930's. The story is about two migrant workers and the events that occur while the two are working on a ranch in California. After reading Of Mice and Men, a reader will understand more about the life of a migrant worker, the environment of their workplace, and the segregation of African Americans. .
The novel depicts the life of two migrant workers, George and Lennie. George is small, wiry, and sharp-featured while his companion, Lennie, is large and awkward. George and Lennie travel from place to place in California during the Depression to find work and make money. The two are life long friends who dream of owning a farm with all of the money they save. The novel states that the two had to live outside in the wilderness during their unemployment. They wore denim and other farmhand attire. They could not afford any other luxury articles of clothing; they only had what was needed to survive. Until workers reached their destination of work they had to rough it in the wilderness. A few lucky workers found sympathetic people who would provide shelter and food. Unfortunately in George and Lennie's case they were not that lucky, they just had to rough it out like many others. .
The reader also learns the environment and arrangement of the work place that the migrant farmers worked on. The farms are comparable to a small community. Very few people made up the ranch; they all socialized and lived together. The ranches had a bunkhouse in which everyone slept, stored personal belongings, ate, and enjoyed simple entertainment. The bunkhouses were usually rectangular rooms with a few beds and shelves. In the novel, because furniture was scarce, the bunkhouse contained a few beds, shelves, and a card table for eating and for playing cards.