In today's society, group or even a family anyone who believe they do not belong can feel “lonely.” Loneliness can be one of the most depressing feelings experienced. Of Mice and Men takes place on a ranch in California during the early 1930s. There many negative viewpoints about certain sexes and races had not yet been resolved. Women and African Americans were perceived as lesser individuals when compared to any white male American, despite the fact that the country was on the turn of the century and thereby beginning to accept all people as equals. Another group of people that did not get much respect and was treated poorly was the mentally challenged. Not until the 1930s was anyone who was mentally retarded and considered crazy, treated respectfully as individuals. Even though it was tough for all Americans during this period of time their American Dream like anybody else was difficult.
John Steinbeck was born in Salinas, California, in 1902. Steinbeck went to Stanford University in 1919, where he enrolled in literature and writing courses until he left in 1925 empty handed without a degree. During the next five years he supported himself as a laborer and journalist in New York City and then as a caretaker for a Lake Tahoe estate, all the time working on his first novel, Cup of Gold (1929). He published two California fictions, The Pastures of Heaven (1932) and To a God Unknown (1933); he also worked on short stories later collected in The Long Valley (1938). A ceaseless experimenter throughout his career, Steinbeck changed courses regularly. Three powerful novels of the late 1930s focused on the California laboring class: In Dubious Battle (1936), Of Mice and Men (1937), and the book considered by many his finest, The Grapes of Wrath (1939). Steinbeck later died in 1968, having won a Nobel Prize in 1962. [STEINBECK 1]
The dream of the farm symbolizes their commitment to each other. George and Lennie's dream represents a desire to challenge the curse of Cain and fallen man they want to break the pattern of wandering and loneliness and return to the perfect garden. In the real world George and Lennie achieve as much of their dream as possible: They are their brother's keepers. The influence of George and Lennie's commitment to each other and to their dream has for just a moment made Slim, Candy, and Crooks, men who worked at the ranch, their brothers keepers and broken the grip of loneliness and solitude in which they exist. Lennie's longing for the rabbits and all soft, living things symbolizes the longing all men have for warm, living contact. “Those who fail to achieve any influence restore their self-esteem in their imagination: in their dreams they are powerful. Thus the alternative societies offered in the text, such as Lennie and George's dream of owning a ranch, are just as hierarchical as the Soledad ranch.” [Reith 2]
Guys like us, who work on ranches, are the loneliness guys in the world. They got no family. They don't belong on...