More on Candy in OMAM

For your Controlled Assessment I have suggested you include a detailed paragraph on Chapter 3 and specifically Candy’s relationship with his dog,  the decision to kill his dog and the actual death of his dog. Here’s a few more pointers to guide you.


Relationship between Candy and the dog

  • Physical description links to situation for disabled and elderly during Depression era and migrant workers – ‘They’ll can me purty soon. Jus’ as soon as I can’t swamp out no bunk houses they’ll put me on the county.’
  • Candy and his dog seem to parallel each other- how? why? Focus on Steinbeck’s use of zoomorphic imagery.
  • Candy and his dog are similar to George and Lennie. Their relationships are anecdotes to loneliness.
  • Animals are symbolic of the cruelty of life in the 1930s – when animals and people don’t serve their purpose any longer, they are discarded. The men are just like animals labouring on the farm.

The decision to kill the dog

  • Candy’s word means little on the farm – no one listens to him, even over serious matters.
  • Candy doesn’t make the decision about the shooting of the dog. He gives in and it emotionally breaks him. His life is ruled by fear – ‘Candy looked for help from face to face.’
  • This section demonstrates Slim’s authority on the ranch – ‘the prince of the ranch’ and ‘God-like.’
  • Steinbeck creates a tense atmosphere in the bunkhouse whilst the men are waiting for the dog to be shot. He describes the silence ‘invading the room’ four times before they hear the gunshot – it’s as if Candy’s emotion makes the men feel uncomfortable.

The death of the dog

Foreshadows later events.  What links these two deaths?

  • star-wars-phantom-menace-anakin-vaderKilled by?
  • Killed with?
  • How are they killed?
  • Reason they are killed.

In Chapter 3: Carlson – ‘he wouldn’t even quiver’

In Chapter 6: ‘Lennie jarred, and then settled slowly forward in the sand, and he lay without quivering.’

‘I ought to of shot that dog myself, George. I shouldn’t ought to of let no stranger shoot my dog.’

Use this post to help you with redrafting your paragraph on Candy and his dog in Chapter 3. We will continue to work on this in class.

Miss O

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