And Loneliness In Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

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Everyone can feel loneliness or isolation in their life. In Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men two men, Lennie and George, travel to a farm, full of isolation for work, in hopes of raising enough money to pursue their dreams. Lennie is a big man with mental disabilities who does not know his own strength and George is his friend who helps take care of him. On the farm Lennie accidentally kills Curley's wife which ends up also killing their dream. Steinbeck’s use of dialogue, word choice, and characterization develops his belief that isolation and loneliness is caused by both personal choice and social barriers depending on the character.
In “Of Mice and Men” Crooks is isolated from the other men on the farm because of his race and his crooked back.
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One of the main reasons Candy is alone is due to his age. He is first referred to as a “stoop-shouldered old man .”(18). He is referred to as old because that's how everyone on the farm sees him as. He is useless because he lost his one of his hands and his old age prevents him from contributing as much as the other men. His age is a social barrier that keeps him isolated. Another reason he is alone is because of his dog, “Why’n’t you get Candy to shoot his old dog and give him one of the pups to raise up? I can smell that dog a mile away. Got no teeth, damn near blind, can’t eat. Candy feeds him milk. He cant chew nothing else.” (36). No one wants to be near him because of his dog. Keeping his dog is a personal choice that keeps him isolated because he can just shoot the dog and then he won't be as isolated.
Dialogue, characterization, and word choice develops Steinbeck’s belief that loneliness and isolation is caused by both personal choice and social barriers. Crooks is lonely because of his race and back. Curley's wife is isolated because of her relationship to Curley, and Candy is lonely because of his old age and old dog. Nowadays people can be isolated because of the same kind of social barriers or by their own personal choice. Personal decisions and social barriers can both contribute to
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