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Themes In Of Mice And Men By John Steinbeck

2558 words - 10 pages

Themes in Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Works Cited Missing

In this essay, written about the tragic novel, "Of Mice and Men", I
shall be outlining some of the themes that relate to the
companionship, loneliness and dreams in the story, which are used by
Steinbeck. I shall also be describing some of the events that took
place. The novel itself is about a couple of men, George Milton and
Lennie Small, who travel together. They aren't ordinary men, but ones
with a future and aspirations. Their hopes are to seek new work on a
ranch and to save up enough money to buy their own. This is their
dream.

The relationship that George and Lennie shared, was one of a master
and dog-like companionship, a father and son relationship. In these
comparisons, Lennie, even though he was a lot more powerful, taller
and stronger than George, was the dog or the son. For example George
supplied the necessities of life, for both himself and Lennie (food, a
place to work, sleep, etc.). Lennie was mentally retarded, and so,
this factor highlighted his vulnerability to George, and other people,
as shown later on in the novel. This element made George feel
superior, and, deep down, even Lennie realised that he needed a father
figure to keep him out of trouble, and, in reverse, George knew that
he needed Lennie to protect him. Lennie needed George, because he
taught him certain lessons on how to keep himself out of trouble, for
example, George told Lennie: "if you jus' happen to get in trouble
like you always done before, I want you to come right here an' hide in
the brush." As a form of discipline, George coerced Lennie not to get
into trouble, by threatening him that he wouldn't be able to tend the
rabbits when they would be living on their own private ranch (via the
dream). George was also a role model for Lennie's behaviour around
other people at the beginning of the novel. For example, Lennie, even
though he made a fool of himself, repeated George's phrase, "strong as
a bull" which demonstrated that he looked up to George. George's main
motive for keeping Lennie well behaved was for their own good - so
that people did not find out about Lennie's mental retardation and to
keep Lennie out of trouble. Evidence that George required Lennie came
at the end, when he agreed to everything. He even let Slim give him
orders: "Me an' you'll go in an' get a drink". So George was "helped"
to his feet and "led" up the highway. He allowed Slim to guide him,
because he was drained of happiness, filled with shock, and knew that
he couldn't handle trouble anymore, without Lennie. After Lennie's
death, his only alternative was to resort to the same level of
vulnerability as Lennie.

George and Lennie, together, had a great sense of admiration for each
other. Lennie looked up to George because he knew that he kept him...

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