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Loyalty And Sacrifice Essay

942 words - 4 pages

Loyalty and sacrifice are two of the main themes shown throughout the classic novel of Of Mice and Men written by John Steinbeck. In this famous work of literature, Steinbeck explores the theme of loyalty and sacrifice. The major example through which the themes of loyalty and sacrifice is through George, who is constantly sacrificing his dreams and happiness for Lennie and for his well-being. These themes of loyalty and sacrifice is also depicted through Candy, who has to sacrifice his loyal dog.
Candy, a major representation of loyalty and sacrifice, is an old rancher who has a dog, which is very old. Some of the ranchers who stays with Candy cannot even think of what keeps Candy from killing the dog who "...stinks like Hell"(35) and is "...all stiff with rheumatism"(44). Since Candy had his old sheepdog ever since it was a puppy, Candy does not want the ranchers shooting his dog to death because Candy's loyalty to the dog keeps Candy from wanting to sacrifice his lifelong partner, the dog. This is portrayed in the quote "Well-hell! I had him so long. Had him since he was a pup"(44). It was not until Slim, the most honored man in the ranch, agrees with the ranchers that putting the dog down would be the best that Candy gives in. Even though Candy gave in to put his dog down, he was reluctant to let the ranchers shoot him. This is shown in the quote where Candy is talking to George, "I ought to of shot that dog myself, George. I shouldn't ought to of let no stranger shoot my dog."(60). Up until this point Candy remained very loyal to his old dog. It was only the thought that this was best for the dog that allowed Candy to agree to put him down. This sacrifice tells us that there is loyalty even between man and dog.
Readers can identify numerous relationships which illustrate both loyalty and sacrifice, in this case which is the relationship between George and Lennie. George, to exemplify, is an example of loyalty and sacrifice because he gave up his life and personal dreams to take care of Lennie. Lennie likes to touch soft things like clothes, hair, and fur which cause conflicts leading to situations for George to rescue Lennie. The first job that George and Lennie take together goes well for a while until Lennie ruins everything good that is happening to them, "Well, we ain't got any … God a'mighty, if I was alone I could live so easy. I could go get a job an' work, an' no trouble. No mess at all, and when the end of the month come I could take my fifty bucks and go into town and get whatever I want. Why, I could stay in a cathouse all...

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