Analysis Of Steinbeck 's ' The ' Of The Night '

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The mood and atmosphere in the opening of the novel is generally soothing, but when Steinbeck introduces characters and focuses on a specific time, it is more threatening. This is because the writer wishes to present the idea that humanity creates a negative impact on nature.

In the first paragraph of the novel, Steinbeck uses imagery to provide the reader a descriptive visual to portray the setting as calm, lonely, and safe. Firstly, Steinbeck highlights the isolation of the scene. The location ‘Soledad’ is Spanish and translates to loneliness, and by saying the place is ‘A few miles south south of Soledad’, it emphasises the isolated feeling even more. He then uses alliteration, for example, ‘The water is warm too’ to describe the calm
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The setting is portrayed as if it is a paradise, especially compared to other settings in the book where it is more bitter and intimidating. Furthermore, Steinbeck deliberately chooses to set the scene during the season of spring. The reader knows this as the willows are described as ‘fresh and green’ and that the leaves carried ‘the debris of the winter’s flooding’. The spring season symbolises rebirth and renewal, and therefore suggests George and Lennie’s new beginning when they arrive at the area. Steinbeck also adds to the idea of change later on when George and Lennie are introduced. In conclusion, Steinbeck uses descriptive language to emphasise the tranquility of the setting so the reader recognises the impact that humanity has on nature. Later on in the novel, the reader senses the shift of atmosphere in the introduction of George and Lennie, as well as during their time in the bunkhouse.

Steinbeck then provides a description of the setting with the introduction of humans so the reader notices the change of atmosphere. It is no longer as safe as the reader first thought, as the addition of humans creates a sense of threat. Firstly, Steinbeck uses repetition to tell the reader that the setting is a common place for people to come by. He describes the path as ‘beaten hard by boys’ and ‘beaten hard by tramps’. This contrasts with the peaceful vibe of nature, but Steinbeck shows that the place is safe because of the boys from the ranches. However,
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