Comparing Love In Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

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“‘Timshel!’’” This single word at the closing of John Steinbeck’s East of Eden is arguably the single most powerful word throughout the entire book. The word is timshel, a Hebrew word that when translated into English, is spoken ‘Thou Mayest’. It brings forth the theme of the book-- a man has a choice, whether to love rather than hate, or to dream rather than be sedentary. ‘Thou Mayest’ is the choice to do, or not to do. This theme occurs periodically in Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, also. However in the latter, you could also say the theme is the power love holds over us. In the two books there are numerous striking similarities, such as the setting and the ending that reach beyond the theme. Among the similarities is the obvious correspondence…show more content…
In East of Eden, Adam Trask makes the choice to let go of his conspiring wife, and to give love to his young sons. However, when the choice takes a turn in the opposite direction and far more care is given to one son then the other, the story becomes a tragic one. A young son causes the death of his brother, and the father of the two boys nearly perishes with grief as he is faced with the decision to forgive his son, or to die without him. With Of Mice and Men Steinbeck tells another dismal ending, that also ends with the demise of a foremost character. Lennie and George have traveled together for years. They, however are the reverse of one another. George has wisdom, and Lennie has the elementary mind of a child. When Lennie unintentionally snaps the neck of the young daughter-in-law of their employer, the workers of the ranch turn to whatever means of “justice” they can conjure. George, in a hasty attempt to save his friend from pain, shoots Lennie himself, and with one shot he is dead. Steinbeck portrays, yet again, another ending of losing a part of yourself to save pain from someone you care deeply
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