This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Animal And Human Nature In Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

829 words - 3 pages

Animal and Human Nature in Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men    

The relationship between animal nature and human nature in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men is a major theme throughout the work. Lennie and Candy are connected with animals via their various individual characteristics, such as physical appearance, mental capacity, or emotional maturity. Other characters, such as Curley and Carlson, demonstrate their animal-like natures in their interactions with others. Despite the obvious connection between the human natures and animal natures of the characters in the work, some of the characters attempt to rise above their bestial nature by dreaming and seeking companionship.

Lennie is perhaps the most obvious example of an animal-like character. The very first description of Lennie is as "a huge man, shapeless of face, with large, pale eyes, with wide, sloping shoulders; and he walked heavily, dragging his feet a little, the way a bear drags his paws" (Steinbeck 2). This opening description of Lennie immediately connects him with a large animal, and for the rest of the novel, whenever his name is mentioned, the reader instinctively pictures a big, bear-like man.

Lennie is also likened to a dog, just a few pages later, when he is compared to a "terrier who doesn't want to bring a ball to its master" (Steinbeck 9). This connection is further emphasized when, at the novelís end, Lennie is shot with the same gun and in the same way as Candy's dog was shot earlier in the novel. Lennie is also connected with animals in his mental capacity and preferences. His "simplemindedness as well as his attraction to animals, especially the rabbits and the puppy, would seem to fix him as animal-like" (Johnson 16).

Candy is identified with animals in a similar fashion. He, like his dog, is old, crippled, and practically useless. He even compares himself with the dog, saying "You seen what they done to my dog tonight? When they can me here, I wisht somebody'd shoot me" (Steinbeck 60).

Curley and Carlson, like Lennie and Candy, are connected with animals, but in a much different manner. They "display the basest elements of nature... and lack all sensitivity, all compassion for those more helpless and weaker in mind and body than they are" (Johnson 16). Curley is extremely competitive, a trait that is evident in his desire to prove himself in a fight with Lennie and in his constantly asking where his wife is, as if he is...

Find Another Essay On Animal and Human Nature in Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

Loneliness and Lenny in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

646 words - 3 pages The Great Depression was a period in the 1930’s when America was in a state of economic collapse. Poverty and unemployment were common, thus, leading to large amounts of migrant workers. The novel by John Steinbeck, Of Mice and Men, is set in the times of the Great Depression. Steinbeck had abandoned the romantic view of mankind s occupying a special place in nature or that man is guided towards special ends. He did not see man as special or

Hopes and Dreams in John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

1103 words - 4 pages Men by John Steinbeck can attest to these things. Yet, these characters found ways to use their hopes and dreams as forms of discipline, as a way to form strong relationships and as an element which distinguishes the main characters from the other characters. Discipline is used most often to help in the achievement of goals. Human beings are prone to indulge in the luxuries of life rather than attain a seemingly impossible dream. George Milton

Theme of Loneliness in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

1154 words - 5 pages The Theme of Loneliness in Of Mice and Men       In the novel, Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck used George and Lennie's relationship and the theme of hope to point out the loneliness in the novel. The novel starts off and is set in Soledad which means lonely. At the beginning they get a job working on a farm together. Lennie is a little retarded and has great physical strength that isn't too controllable. As they work from ranch to ranch

John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

1599 words - 7 pages tell him what they will do on the farm they were going to get and George shoots him without him knowing that George was going to kill him (Hart). Conclusion This is a parable of what it means to be human. It is about ambition of two men to own land and have their own ranch, and about things that stood in their way to keep them from having their dream. They were never able to achieve their ambition because of Lennie’s disability because it kept

John Steinbeck's - Of Mice And Men

694 words - 3 pages John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men is filled with colourful characters and well developed moods beautifully contrasted with each other as the plot progresses. An excellent example of this occurs in the opening and closing episodes of the novel. The story's introduction is set in the same geographical location as its conclusion. Even though both episodes occur at exactly the same location, in other aspects of setting the two are very different. The

John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

1213 words - 5 pages element that is just as rewarding. Through friendship a link between two individuals is already created. When you add even more happiness to it than that already created through friendships, the outcome is usually much more. This greater outcome may cause one to do anything for the other in guidance, or in sacrifice. This last element once again has a name given by many, and this name is ?love?. Just like in Steinbeck's creation, "Of Mice and Men

John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

3167 words - 13 pages John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men In the novel of, "Of Mice and Men," the setting of the story starts out when both George and Lennie arrive at a pool of the Salinas River in California. Both of them ran away from Weed, their previous location since Lennie made a terrible mistake. George and Lennie are totally different from one another in every aspect. Lennie tends to act like a demanding child, while on the other

John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

563 words - 2 pages turns to Lennie and says, ‘Jump in’. An’ he jumps”(40). This proves that Lennie will do anything for George. Although Lennie may be of low intelligence, he can still be quite crafty. After threatening to leave, Lennie stays but asks George to, “Tell me-like you done before. About the rabits” (13). George does so. Thus, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men concerning two men who travel the country looking for work, has many important characters. Although many of the characters are very different from each other, they are also different. This is clearly shown through George and Lennie.

John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

512 words - 2 pages Of Mice and MenRough Draft In the book Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, there are many instances of foreshadowing. While they may not be noticed at first, they stick out like a sore thumb in the end. The main characters in the book are Lennie, a huge man with the mind of a young child, and George, a small man who had landed them a job on a ranch. Lennie is a man who doesn't think for himself, and relies on George for guidance. They

Loneliness in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

2379 words - 10 pages Loneliness in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men     Mother Theresa once said, "Loneliness is a man's worst poverty." Without friends and companions, people begin to suffer from loneliness and solitude (Dusenbury 38). Loneliness is an inevitable fact of life and cannot be avoided, as shown prevalent through each of the characters in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men. Each and every character in this novel exhibits loneliness. Lennie was

John Steinbeck's novel "Of Mice and Men"

720 words - 3 pages The novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck is the book that has really made me enjoy it that much. It is really unusual because it made me think deeply about eh whole story. The story happened in Salinas Valley, California during the 20-centurt depressions. During those years, men traveled around and looked for any jobs they could find, leaving their families just to make money. Many companies went bankrupt. That was a time that had no hope or

Similar Essays

Prejudice In Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

1112 words - 4 pages “Prejudice is a great time saver. You can form opinions without having to get the facts.” This quote, once said by E. B. White, excellently states what the novel, Of Mice and Men, is trying to clearly state. Of Mice and Men is a profound novel that has many things to teach society. This novel, written by John Steinbeck, reflects many flaws in the world today. It mirrors many of the characteristics that every human possesses. Prejudice is still a

Discrimination In Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

881 words - 4 pages In the literary work Of Mice and Men, the reader is introduced to the ranch as a world of its own, within which prejudice plays a significant part. The characters in this novel act as a community in a world of their own, having no connections to any other type of society. A strong point, enforced through many examples in the book, is the constant ability of the stronger to overcome the weaker. The prejudices of the majority towards the minority

Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men Essay

1895 words - 8 pages Of Mice and MenLoneliness is a basic part of human life. Every one becomes lonely once in a while but in Steinbeck's novella "Of Mice and Men", he illustrates the loneliness of ranch life in the early 1930's and shows how people are driven to try and find friendship in order to escape from loneliness. "A guy goes nuts if he aint got nobody. Don't matter no difference who the guy is, long's he's with you. I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an' he

Lennie And George In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

1628 words - 7 pages . Griesbach, Daniel. "Reduced to Nothing: Race, Lynching, and Erasure in the Theater Revision of Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men." The Essential Criticism of John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men. Ed. Michael J. Meyer. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press, 2009. 253-275. Rpt. in Drama Criticism. Ed. Marie C. Toft. Vol. 46. Detroit: Gale, 2012. Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 15 Apr. 2014. Jones, James Earl. "Foreword to Of Mice and Men, a Play in Three Acts; and