Kategoriarkiv: Engelska

Book review by NB01

Painfully Realistic

First Section

When I was a little girl, my mother told me not to wear a bikini because it was too “sexy”.

I was completely shocked when hearing this. All I saw was a cute flower-patterned piece of swimwear. Why would that have anything to do with sex? All the boys could walk around with bare chests, but for a girl to show her stomach was apparently the equivalent to having the word “SLUT” written on her forehead. No wonder I still feel insecure about showing my skin, all these years afterwards. Some years later, I started to hear sexist comments in the school corridor. Boys, who were no older than 12 years old, were bragging about their made-up sexual experiences they’d had with girls. They made fun of our body shapes and how we looked. The girls just stood there, giggling shyly and made mental notes to put on heavier makeup the next day so that they could meet up to the guys’ expectations. And nobody found the courage to actually speak up.

In the novel Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck, the most important female character is the wife of the boss’ son. She despises her husband Curley, whom she had to marry against her will. When Lennie had injured Curley badly in a fight, his wife responds with: “I’m glad you bust out Curley a bit. He got it comin’ to him. Sometimes I’d like to bust him myself” (page 79). I completely understand her. She dreamt of becoming a famous actress, but was exploited over and over again by unrespectful men before getting trapped on a farm packed with even more men who didn’t see her as anything more than an object to make fun of. Even though this story takes place almost a hundred years ago, many women today can still relate to her struggle. From an early age, girls learn that it’ll be much more difficult for them to have a successful career just because of what is between their legs. Their dreams get crushed and stomped on by the patriarchal society, that tells them that their only purpose in life is to be a good wife and mother.

Curley’s wife gets called names such as “tramp”, “bitch” and “poison”, just because she likes to dress up in nice clothes. Still, nowadays, girls just like myself are made fun of if they don’t fit into the stereotypes of what the perfect girl should look like. If they try to change, they just receive more hate for trying too hard. The men working on the farm feel the need to put Curley’s wife into place and tries to break down her self-confidence into pieces by shaming her for her seductive clothing. At the same time, they shamelessly hire prostitutes without feeling any guilt whatsoever. I think eight-years-old me, would relate to the unfair sexualization of women described in this book.

“I’ve seen ‘em poison before, but I’ve never seen no piece of jail bait worse than her.” 

  • George (page 31)

Of Mice and Men is a realistic tragedy that explains the unfair life as a lower-class American during the Great Depression in the 1930’s. The author himself, John Steinbeck came from a quite wealthy family, but he spent a lot of time travelling through California and working on farms similar to the one where this book takes place. He was therefore familiar with the experience of being a poor migrant worker. Throughout his life, he published over 30 novels, all dealing with social and economic issues (kiwi, 2009). Of Mice and Men is a novella, or in other words a very short book, however, it uses a somewhat advanced language. It also contains a lot of slang phrases and swears words that can be difficult to understand unless you happened to live in California during the 30’s.

 

Second Section

In this novella, we get to follow the journey of George and Lennie, two travelling workers who struggle to get out of their unprivileged lives and follow their dreams. They are looking for a way to earn a living, and get employed as wheat buckers on a farm where they get food and bunk beds to sleep in. Even though the working conditions could be better, they would still live an adequate life if it wasn’t for the fact that Lennie is disabled. If anyone found out about their secret, it could cost them their job, and consequently their lives. Lennie is a kind soul, but sometimes he hurt people by accident when he tries to be nice. He is an insecure little child trapped in a strong man’s body, and all he wants is to live on his own farm and take care of furry little rabbits. George convinces him that his dream will come true, as long as he doesn’t do anything wrong.

“I won’t get in no trouble, George. I ain’t gonna say a word.” (page 15)

 

Many of the workers on the farm start getting suspicious, as they notice that something about Lennie isn’t quite right. They enjoy messing with his mind and manipulating him into believing in things that aren’t true. The only ones who support him are Slim, the “prince of the ranch”, the old man Candy and the black stable buck Crooks, whom no one other than Lennie wants to talk to. George and Lennie make plans with old Candy to save up money to buy a farm together, something all of them have been dreaming about for years. Even though George repeatedly complains about how Lennie is acting stupid and revealing their plans, he loves him like a brother and defends him whenever someone is being mean.

“He ain’t no cuckoo!” (page 38)

Slim lets Lennie have one of his newborn puppies, which makes him over the moon with joy. He picks it up and pets it, despite being told not to. He doesn’t realize how strong he is and accidentally kills the poor animal. He’s completely weighed down with sorrow and guilt.

The boss’s son Curley’s wife is one of the few people who actually talk to Lennie without the objective of hurting his feelings. He explains to her what’d happened when he tried to pet the puppy, and in return, she tells him the story of how she ended up in on a farm with a man whom she despised. She’d grown up in Salinas, in a wicked old lady’s house. She’d been deceived over and over again by men who promised her a career as an actress and then disappeared for good. In the end, she had no other option than to get married to Curley, a stranger she had met the very same night as the wedding. Lennie is the only person she feels confident to trust with her story.

The girl lets Lennie stroke her hair, but he misunderstands her and starts pulling it. She starts screaming hysterically. In a panicked attempt to keep her quiet, he unintentionally chokes the girl to death. He is completely shocked about what he’s done.

“I shouldn’t of did that … George’ll be mad …” (page 88).

It doesn’t take long until George and old Candy finds out. Thankfully, they’re very forgiving. George knows his friend well and knows that he is a pure soul who would never kill a person intentionally. Lennie runs away from the farm, as he obviously isn’t safe to stay there anymore. George and Lennie arrange a plan on how to make it look like Lennie had nothing to do with the murder. But when the other men find the corpse, they immediately suspect that Lennie was the one who did it. They all agree they’ll try their best to find him and shoot him to death. Will Lennie be able to flee before it’s too late?

Third Section

Our world is filled with injustice and inequality. Unless you’re a well-educated, white, heterosexual man, there is going to be some part of society that is discriminating towards you. Of Mice and Men include many examples of prejudicial behavior, such as ableism (bigotry towards people with disabilities). When I was younger, I went to the same school as many people who suffered from various mental disabilities. They were often made fun of by the other children, just for being different. People pointed and laughed at them, assuming they weren’t intelligent enough to take offense. These disabled children must’ve felt just as misunderstood and unfairly treated as Lennie did. The same thing goes for Curley’s wife, who is the only woman on a farm full of males.

Of course, the other people on the farm are completely unable of understanding how humiliating it is to be enslaved by a patriarchal society. They have never walked in her shoes. As a consequence of their ignorance, she is very lonely and despairing. We don’t even get to know her actual name, as she is seen as nothing more than an object. Just like the other people on the farm, she had dreams and aspirations. The difference is that her dreams didn’t seem to matter, as she was just a stupid girl who should “stay the hell where she belongs” (page 60).

Even though society has made progress since the 30’s, most women will still relate to the struggles that Curley’s wife faces. What woman hasn’t heard men making sexist comments behind her back? This book was a real eye-opener to the critical issues in our society that most of us chose to turn a blind eye to. The way we joke about and oppress women creates a malign jargon which we get so used to that we don’t even notice it. If we claim that we already are completely equal and use this as an excuse not to stand up for ourselves, women will keep suffering in silence. We need to listen to the stories of women like Curley’s wife, and make a difference.

I think everyone would benefit from reading this book, although I would mainly recommend this to anyone who is interested in American history and human rights. Not only does it have interesting, unique but simultaneously relatable characters, but it also teaches a valuable lesson about life. Having knowledge about our history is crucial in order to understand the present and ensure a successful future. I especially like the detailed nature descriptions that makes this book very unique, as well as the complex and interesting characters. However, I wish there was a sequel, as it feels like it didn’t get a proper ending. Some events in the book lacks explanation, so a few questions have to be answered with your own imagination. This might be annoying for the reader, but it also makes the book more intriguing. It’s a very emotional book that’ll leave you crying and wanting to throw the book against the wall out of pure anger – which I am sure is just what Steinbeck intended with his story. Reading this novel has been an experience that I’ll never forget.

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck teaches us the moral lesson of not judging people too harshly if you haven’t worn their shoes. As William Hazlitt once said, “prejudice is the child of ignorance” (Smith, A W 2014). Without awareness about the parts of society that are facing discrimination, we can never fully understand and respect them. This book is not only entertaining, but also informative about subjects that many people fear to speak about, especially at the time it was written. It’s not exactly humoristic, but rather very sad and depressing. My favourite part of the book must be when Lennie and Curley’s wife bond over their loneliness and self doubt and talk to each other like equals, despite that they seem to be so different from each other. It shows that an equal society where everyone can cooperate regardless of their gender, intelligence and ethnicity is entirely possible.

References

“kiwi” 2009, What inspired John Steinbeck to write Of Mice and Men? Was it an experience he went through?

https://www.enotes.com/homework-help/what-inspired-john-steinbeck-write-mice-men-was-an-114539, accessed 16 May 2018

Smith, A W 2014, Prejudice Is The Child of Ignorance

http://www.authorsden.com/visit/viewArticle.asp?id=71856, accessed 30 May 2018

Vorick, R 2010, Feminism 101: What is Ableism?

https://femmagazine.com/feminism-101-what-is-ableism/, accessed 23 May 2018

 

Book Report by HH 24

”An amazing book that will make you feel like you’re a part of the book”

My personal connection to this book is dreams. When you’re fifteen years old there will probably be a lot pressure on you. Your choices in life will be your biggest value and your greatest priority is to not disappoint your family. The dreams you had as a child will no longer be the same and things like high school, jobs and the future will take over a part your life. You won’t feel like you have time for your social life because it will feel like homeworks are more important than hanging with your friends. You will experience a lot of anxiety and stress, not only because of the homeworks but also the thoughts of how this is the time you change your destiny. But how come that even though you have it tough that you don’t give up everything? You could easily give up everything, leave everyone you love behind and do whatever you want. The reason you don’t do that is because of dreams and the dreams are you motivation to keep going. You dream about a great job, a house, an expensive car, a wonderful family and that all this things you went through will pay you off in the future. I have a lot of dreams and I think that is maybe why I felt so connected to the book.  It made me feel like I was a part of every chapter which was a really weird but exciting feeling.

John Steinbeck was born 27th of February 1902 in Salina Monterey, California. He writes a lot of books about his life and how the society looked like when he was alive. The book “Of Mice And Men” is a short book with only 104 pages. It’s pretty hard to understand some parts of the book because they talk in old fashioned English. (Wikipedia, 2018)

How is to live in under the great depression and being a minority in the 20s? Why is the book so inspiring to others? In this book you’ll follow George Milton and his disabled friend Lennie Small on their journey under the starving period. George is described as a short and smart guy and you clearly understand that he is the opposite of Lennie. He makes a lot of plans to make a better future for Lennie and himself. He really cares about his friend and never leaves him even if his friend always put them in bad situations. Lennie on the other hand is a very big and muscular man with a childish mind. He has a disability and is often misunderstood. George and Lennie met when they were younger and when they grew up George promised Lennie’s aunt Clara that when she died – George was going to take care of his friend. Few years later they got their first job at a ranch in Weed, but later had to leave because Lennie was accused for sexually harassing a girl when he only meant to touch her dress. After they were banned from the ranch; George and Lennie decided to go to a different ranch in Soledad, California. Their first real conversation starts on their way to the new ranch and we get to hear their plans for the future. Lennie ask George about their future and his future rabbits and George says: “Guys like us are the loneliest men in the world” (pg 13). That part of the book is when I started to realize that the book is going to hit me personally. When they get to the new ranch after some weeks you get to know new characters such as Slim, a very understanding and respected man. Candy, an old man who’s desperate of a new life and loves his dog more than anything. And Curley, a selfish man who always wants to get in fight, he’s also the son of the boss. Lennie and Curley end up having a really bad relationship which will put them in a bad situation..

 

I grew up with two parents where of one of them is a minority in Sweden. My mom tells me a lot of stories about how many close-minded people she has met and how a lot of them is unbelievably racist. I always get upset and disgusted by knowing how many awful people that are out there and she shouldn’t be judged by her ethnicity or her appearance. She’s an amazing person who deserves nothing but respect, and the fact that so many people can’t see that just because she’s not fully Scandinavian is heartbreaking. Thankfully, I haven’t had a racist person on me and if I would my whole day would’ve been ruined. It amazes me how well mom has dealt with these human beings and how she actually managed them to open up a little bit more. I think the world is going in the right direction and I think the next generation will look back at us and laugh at how many idiots it existed on our time.

In the book, when Crooks had no friends and  not anyone only because he had another skin color made me think about how we need to stand up for everyone. Give everyone a compliment now and then and only spread love because that’s what we need in this world.

I think this book is good for people who’s interested in historia and is older than thirteen years old. However there is a lot of swearing and discriminating words in the book so I would recommend people who easily get triggered to stop reading. The book feels very realistic and is actually not as the other books in the same genre. The thing that makes this book stand out so much is the fact that this book gives you a mix of different feelings. Sometimes you get mad, the next sad, later happy etc. It gives you a satisfying feeling and it’s very addicting. There was a lot of parts of the book that didn’t leave my mind until one week after I was done with the book, there was too much to sick in and the end felt like a horrible surprise.

 

I’m pretty sure I felt like what the author wanted me to feel. He’s an incredible writer and puts a lot of emotions in his arts. I’ve read a lot of books, everything from Harry Potter to The Hunger Games. Even though they’re all amazing book ”Of Mice and Men” has to be my favorite. In the beginning of the book I didn’t understand that much what was going on and it only felt like I read the book because I was forced to do a school assignment. After a while, I got addicted to the book and I just wanted to read more and more; it’s crazy how a book can make you feel! The thing about this book is that everything feels so realistic, from the way they talk to the way they act. Everything is described so well and I think that’s the reason why the book was so believable. And what I like the most, is that this book was perfect to me.

 

Of mice and men is a book from the author John Steinbeck. The theme is dreams and the message is to never give up on what you love. For me the book is outstanding and helps your self-improvement. It makes you reflect on your life and everyone around you. My favorite part of the book is in the end when they talk about their future for the last time and it’s definitely the part that got to me the most. It’s hard to tell what the author could’ve done differently because it’s a really good book in general. I like the thing that the author wrote every conversation they had as they would be talking. It made me feel more part of the book and made me more amazed by this incredible book!

References

Wikipedia (2018). John Steinbeck.

https://sv.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Steinbeck

[2018-06-06]

 

Huseby –

By:Celina and Emilia

Trip to Huseby

 

Before we went to Huseby we  watched at a movie about refugees. When we were inside the museum the guide talked about the exhibition and where it has been. On the wall there was many pictures of people that  escaped, and the guide talked about how people  told them the story when they escaped. The guides had  some things like mobiles and powerbanks. In the exhibition there was a bowl with  a mobile phone dropped in it. That symbolized  a person who had dropped her phone in the Mediterranean Sea.

 

 

We got a paper that had questions about the refugees and phone apps that helped them for their escape. We looked in VR-glasses. There was a movie about a girl who lived in one of the world’s biggest refugee camps.

They had built a room that was very cold and very dark. In the room there were glass sculptures with some lights on so that we could see them. It was very scary because we thought that someone was going to jump up and scare us.  

We learned about how hard it is for a refugee to come from, for example, Syria to Sweden, how we can help them in their  escapem and how important their mobile phones can be.

The best thing was when we built our own small sized escape boat  and tried it in a minimized sea. When we tried the boats, the propeller splashed lots of water on us and we got wet.

That was our trip to Huseby that we enjoyed. It was funny, scary and educational.

Thanks for reading!

Mot Nya Höjder — Utmaning 1 (Sorting,Krypto och Telgraphic Key)

                                                                                     

             

The 1st Challenge: Sorting

We did sorting with alphabetic order. The name that came first alphabetically went to the right side of the pattern. The second one went to the left side of the pattern. And then they came back to their  place. The first time we failed 🙁 We thought again  and then we did the right thing. When we were wrong we looked at our model and we switched places like the people in the model did. We wrote our name in alphabetic order and then we  wrote our finding in the computer.

Written by 6th grade students

The 2nd Challenge: Krypto

 

We cut pieces of paper and wrapped it around the stick.  We wrote secret messengers to each others. Then we unroll and gived to a friend so they could figure it out.  Sometimes you could figure it out, but sometimes you couldn´t because the messengers broke. It´s important to roll it correct because then you couldn´t read.  It was fun because it was like a mystery.

Written by 6th grade students

The 3rd Challenge: Telegraphic Key

 

We made a telegraphic key and sent codes to each other. We made connections with the cables. We made the telegraphic key step by step. We hade a lot of fun and now we will explain the telegraphic key and how we made it.

Step 1. We connected the cables with the buzzard.

Step 2. We connected the cables with the battery.

Step 3. We trid to send messages and it worked really good. If you try it maybe it will work!😎

We coded words. We loved it because we learnd and we love teknik!

Written by 6th grade students

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Far Away Friends via Mystery Skype

Can you imagine talking to a class in another country?

Mystery Skype is when you Skype with students from another country and you ask yes or no questions. The point is to find out where in the world they live.

In our school, the 5th grade did if for a humanities lesson and the 3rd and 4th grade did it for an English lesson. 5th grade talked to a class in Norway and won by guessing first! 4th grade also guessed first that their mystery skype class was from Wales and won. The 3rd graders meet their penpals from Weimar, Germany!

Mystery skype is really fun and we learn a lot of English. We should definetely do it again because we learned English, got to talk to people and we learned some geography too!

Written by: 4th and 5th grades students (Yusra, Suwayma, Bella, Fardosa, and Nawal)