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Of Mice And Men Friendship Vs. Loneliness Essay

1191 words - 5 pages

In the novel, "Of Mice and Men", many examples of Loneliness and friendship are present. The structure of the novel is based around these sorts of relationships, which are seen all through the book and form the basis of it.Friendships in the novel are far and few between. On the surface it may seem there are many friendships on the ranch, but most of them are superficial. The only true friendship in the book would be that of George and Lennie, the main characters. Their friendship is actually quite interesting, as in the beginning, George saw Lennie as an obligation he had no choice in fulfilling. After Lennie's Aunt Clara died, George was forced into looking after Lennie. George saw no use in Lennie other than doing work and being a great target for practical jokes. But that all changed one day, when a joke went too far. George and Lennie soon became close friends afterwards; as for once in his life George actually talked to this mentally disabled man, and found out that he really had a true companion in Lennie. The pair travel together everywhere, and stick up for each other no matter what. An example of this is when Curley claims, "Oh, so it's that way". While George merely replies, "Yeah, its that way". This shows how George and Lennie are always backing each other up, and they are ready to give sacrifices such as losing their reputation to avoid situations, which might endanger their friendship. As George told Lennie, "I've got you 'an you got me, which makes us different from everyone else".Slim and Crooks also display a type of friendship that was very rare for its time. Slim was friends with Crooks, and he accepted Crooks for who he was no matter what his colour or race. Their friendship may not be as strong as George and Lennie's, but it is apparent that they stick up for each, and do the best they can to look out for each other as well. An example of this is when Crooks tells Slim he has heated up the horse tar, he asks Slim if he wants him to go place them on the horses, Slim replies, "No, I'll come do it myself". This is not a sign of distrust among the two, but a sign that Slim knows how much Crooks works and he wants to give him a break. Crooks really needs Slim as a friend and someone to talk to because as he tells Lennie, "A guy gets lonely. Guys get sick when their lonely, you need someone to talk to. How would you like it if you had nobody to talk to". Crooks is alone on the ranch because he is black, and Slim seems to be the only one who looks through this, that's why their friendship stands out among the rest. Without Slim, Crooks is totally alone on the ranch. He is discriminated against because he is black, and is denied the opportunity to play games after dark with the rets of the ranch hands. He isn't even allowed to sleep in the same bunkhouse as they are; instead he lives in a little shack. The prejudice attitude of the time meant that Crooks was usually called names like "Nigger", and that really no one cared about him...

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