Of Mice and Men Literary Analysis - Literature Essay Example

Of Mice and Men Literary Analysis

Of Mice and Men is a novel about two men and their struggle to reach their dreams of owning their own ranch - Of Mice and Men Literary Analysis introduction. George Milton and Lennie Small are best friends, who despite of all their extremely difference personalities, but still manage to work together, travel together and get rid of anything that gets in their way. The friendship between George and Lennie is prevalent throughout the book, but it is shown most explicitly in their plan to live on a farm together in the future. The way in which this dream is articulated to represent the idealized friendship they share. The author Steinbeck uses nearly all of the characters in this novel to express the importance of having a real and true friendship. 
However, a large part in the novel Of Mice and Men expresses the loneliness suffered by many of the characters and their longing for companionship. Each of these characters searches for friends who truly care about each other throughout the story. The main theme that the author attempts to convey through various dialogues between characters is basically the brother kind of love between Lennie and George: the theme of an idealized male friendship. In section one, George directly points out that how important is the role of Lennie in his life. Despite George’s impatience and annoyance with Lennie, and his remarks about how easy his life would be without him, he still believes that: “Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don’t belong no place… With us it ain’t like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us (Steinbeck, 14)”. And Lennie finishes his sentence by saying, “An’ why? Because… because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that’s why (Steinbeck, 14)”. From these two quotes, we can see that although George always has tons of complains to make towards Lennie, he still considers him as his most important friend in life; so does Lennie. ‘

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This quote also perfectly demonstrates the idealist friendship between Lennie and George. We can see that by the way how Lennie talks and express his feeling into words: George is basically the world of Lennie. In section three, “I ain’t got no people. I seen the guys that go around on the ranches alone. That ain’t no good. They don’t have no fun. After a long time they get mean. They get wantin’ to fight all the time. . . ‘Course Lennie’s a God damn nuisance most of the time, but you get used to goin’ around with a guy an’ you can’t get rid of him (Steinbeck, 41)”. In this particular dialogue, Steinbeck used George’s comment on Lennie to demonstrate the bond of friendship between the two characters. In this instance, George explains that despite Lennie being a pain to be around, he is still willing to stay around Lennie without being a proper reason. The reason he gives is very insignificant; this further illustrates the strength of the friendship between the two because George is willing to stay around Lennie without a proper reason despite Lennie causing troubles sometimes. With this dialogue, Steinbeck further emphasizes the theme of friendship by illustrating the fact that people can be friends without a proper reason. This quote from the book probably means the most to me, due to the fact that how George points out that he could not live without the company of Lennie.

The reason that they can work out so matchup is the complementary of each of their personality. In section three, “well, I never seen one guy take so much trouble for another guy. I just like to know what your interest is (Steinbeck, 45)”. In this comment from the boss, Steinbeck illustrates the boss’s confusion about George and Lennie’s relationship. The boss seems to not be able to understand the unconditional friendship between George and Lennie and thinks that George is taking advantage of Lennie. From the boss’s confusion, Steinbeck further illustrates the intensity of the unconditional friendship between the two characters. We can see from the boss’s reaction that this kind of relationship is very rare, thus further conveying Steinbeck’s theme of friendship, and how a true friendship is very scarce when it comes to relationships between people. Also, in section five, Crooks reveals how easy it is to feel crazy when you are alone. With no one to confirm his reality, he begins to say: “‘A guy needs somebody-to be near him.’ He whined, ‘A guy goes nuts if he ain’t got nobody (Steinbeck, 72)”. The importance of the relationship between George and Lennie is reinforced by Crook’s poorness. The relationship between George and Lennie is envied by the other characters who thirst for a good companionship just like them. However, Many of the characters admit to suffering from loneliness throughout the text. As the story develops, Candy, Crooks, and Curley’s wife all confess their deep loneliness in life. Each of these characters searches for a friend, someone to help them measure the world. Loneliness is a significant factor in several characters’ lives. Candy is lonely after his dog is gone. Curley’s wife is lonely because her husband is not the guy she hoped for, so she deals with her loneliness by flirting with the men on the ranch, which causes Curley to increase his jealousy. Nevertheless, the companionship of George and Lennie is also the result of loneliness. “A guy goes nuts if he ain’t got nobody. Don’t make no difference who the guy is, long’s he’s with you (Steinbeck, 72)”. The author further reinforces this theme by situating the story near the town of Soledad, which ironically means “solitude” in Spanish. Despite all these factors that combined to become a tone of loneliness throughout the story, the whole story still seems more like to convey the importance of friendship to me. The bond between George and Lennie is still what really the end of story – the death of Lennie. If the theme of friendship is not the main theme that author Steinbeck was going to convey then the end of story would not be like that.

In conclusion, it is clear that when the author Steinbeck wrote this book, he used the different characters to push across the point that to not have a friend, there would be no point in living. He uses the loneliness of Crooks, Candy and Curley’s wife to show that without friends, life would be an ugly place. George and Lennie’s relationship is so rare because it is the only friendship in the novel, let alone true friendship. Nobody else on the ranch has a friendship like George and Lennie, which is why they are different and stand out from everyone else. For George and Lennie, as they make their way through the great depression, on the path to their dream, all they have is each other, and for them that is enough. In addition, George is a responsible normal man with a dream in general. His loyal friendship and responsibility with Lennie helps him to sustain his dream of a better future. But sadly, it ends with the death of Lennie and the tragic separation of the friendship between George and Lennie.

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