The author Dean Koontz once said, “...the most identifying trait of humanity is our ability to be inhumane to one another.” Although there are many hopeful aspects in people, the inhumanity of people is inevitable. In the novel Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, Lennie Small and George Milton discover the hardships and the hope in life as migrant workers during the Depression era. Though their hope for a better life dwindles throughout their journey, Lennie and George’s dream of owning their own farm help to distract them from their harsh reality of despondency. Steinbeck reveals the bitter nature of mankind due to weakness and vulnerability through his use of symbolism, characterization, and imagery.
Of Mice of Men was written by John Steinbeck and was an interpretation of the Great Depression and its effects on the people. The Great Depression is the economic recession and it began on 1929 and lasted till 1939. It was the deepest and longest-lasting economic downturn in the history of the Western industrialized world. Each character represented the person that was affected by the Depression. Lennie represented the mentally disabled, Curley’s Wife represented the women, Crooks represented the black, Candy represented the disable, George represented the average worker, but to an extent and Curley represented the rich.
Of Mice and Men provides us with plenty examples of dehumanization that guide us to conclusions, or insights or feelings of dehumanization. Some examples of this is the dehumanization of Lennie, Crooks and Curley’s wife. Of Mice and Men perfects the traits of dehumanization of Lennie by relating him to a number of animals like the horse. Steinbeck dehumanizes Lennie by comparing him to a horse when George says, “His huge companionship dropped his baskets and flung himself down and drank from the surface of the green pool; drank with long gulps, snorting into the water like a horse” (Steinbeck, 2). Furthermore, Steinbeck helps us, by dehumanizing Crooks, living in a barn, to animals, to visualize how poorly Crooks is treated. To prove this, Crook says, “ ‘Cause I’m black.
“You hadda, George. I swear you hadda” (Steinbeck 107). Slim, one of the main characters in Steinbeck’s, Of Mice and Men, says this to George as they walk away from Lennie’s body. Slim helps George realize that he did the right thing by killing Lennie himself instead of letting someone else do it before he did. If George had not killed Lennie himself, Lennie would be facing torture from Curley, being thrown and tied up in a mental institution, and facing the fact of a recurring cycle of doing bad things.
Archetypes are a manifestation of how our minds envision the roles of characters, these characters come in the form of the hero, villain, temptress, damsel, monster, and mentor. In the book Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck, we follow the story of two men who struggle to pull through to survive horrible times, on their journey they come across other characters that fulfill the roles of the archetypes. The archetype in discussion is the villain archetype which is the evildoer of a story usually a person who commits a crime against society or against a couple of people. One character in particular that fills the archetype of the villain is Curley, he has an aura of evil that resonates from his attitude and his actions, which triggers people
The first reason that Steinbeck's portrayal of Curley’s wife is unfair is that he never gives Curley any redeeming personality traits, he only depicts her as unintelligent and promiscuous. Making her physical features, such as her red nail polish, the most important part of her character. This is made obvious by the ranchers when they talk about her, as George says, “I seen 'em poison before, but I never seen no piece of jailbait worse than her. You leave her be." And, “Jesus, what a tramp. So that's what Curley picks for a wife”(67). This is unfair because if Steinbeck wanted to make readers question the misogyny occurring in the book he would have given her redeeming
Johns Steinbeck’s 1937 masterpiece “of mice and men” gives insight to the lives of ordinary people affected by the great depression in America, during the 1930s. In the novella the themes of loyalty and disloyalty are a key part of the plot. Steinbeck explores the seminal themes of loyalty and disloyalty by careful use of setting, structure and development of complex character constructs. Also the use of language and imagery in the novella depict the reality of the great depression for many people and the challenges they faced everyday.
The first way Steinbeck shows that Curley’s wife is a victim is by showing her dislike for Curley. In the novel, a lot of information was given when Curley’s wife was speaking to Lennie. Steinbeck states, “Well, I ain’t told nobody this before. Maybe I ought’n to. I don’ like Curley. He ain’t a nice fella.” (page 89). During the great depression, in society, it was not “proper” to be a woman at the age of 17 living at home. Women were expected to already be married and having kids. Chances are Curley’s wife is probably 18 or 19 years old. No woman that age wants to be married to an older man like that taking into consideration that Curley is somewhere in his late 20’s or early 30’s. Now we know that Curley’s wife dislikes Curley. Curley’s
The characters in “Of Mice and Men” have memorable personalities that we all can relate to due to their set archetypes. John Steinbeck uses these common and generalized in order to have the readers relate more to his characters. This allows the reader to experience the story and feelings of the characters much better and lets the reader to connect to the character’s feelings, or force the reader to form opinions that aligns with those of the main protagonist(s).
Being isolated or not able to have something because of being different is tough. Imagine the people that are different races or they have a disability and they can not the same as others. Segregation lasted up until 1954, blacks in America were oppressed and given less because they did not have same pigment of skin. They were assumed to be less important so they were beat and forced to live in poor conditions. In Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck, many charters are limited to what they can do based of of barriers. Some characters like Crooks and Curley’s wife are isolated and blocked off and they both react differently. Some people are forced to have less due to being different. The social barriers forced some people to have a lower self
Power is more than having control of other. It’s also about respect for both oneself and for others. It must be earned and not just expected. Throughout the novella “Of Mice and Men,” by John Steinbeck, the main characters face hardships and adventures that may stand in the way of their ambition to own their own ranch house. This novella shows the all ‘American Dream,’ sacrifice, loneliness, and the struggle for them to find out their way through life. Looking at three main characters from this story, Curley, his wife, and Slim, through the power lens, reveal that each character achieves power in his own way, developing conflicts between them.
Through George and Lennie’s relationship, Steinbeck exemplifies a power struggle in which the stronger of the two, George, prevails over the other. George continuously uses his mental advantage to belittle Lennie; George states, “Used to play jokes on ‘im ‘cause he was too dumb to take care of ‘imself...Made me seem Goddamn smart alongside of him” (Steinbeck 40). George and Lennie’s relationship is particularly complex: it is not affectionate, but, rather, one of dominance. Both George and Lennie have very low positions in society; they own no property, have little money, and are migrants looking to work for someone else. Lennie is George’s only outlet for control. In a society that reveres masculinity and strength, this is of the utmost importance: having authority over Lennie gives George the illusion of control, which makes his pauperization more bearable. George takes advantage of Lennie’s mental handicap
John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men illustrates the downfall of two lonely men. who have only each other to depend upon. Many of George and Lennie’s struggles come from things they cannot control, such as Lennie’s mental illness and the fact that both men are stuck in the dead-end pursuit of rural labor in 1930’s America. However, the greatest tragedy in this story comes from the simple fact that Lennie is left alone with Curley’s wife because Curley’s wife is the true villain in Of Mice and Men; she alone causes the trouble that leads to Lennie’s death. In his novella, Steinbeck examines the different ways that men and women express their power, and while the men in his tale rely upon the power of physical strength to assert their place in society,
The book Of Mice and Men is full of puzzling examples of the human condition, from Lennie and his mental disability to Curley only caring about his social appearance. With characters like these two, the book exploits the human condition that concerns circumstances life has given you. John Steinbeck brings to life what being a laborer in the American depression meant to the men and one woman who had enough personality to stand out. Steinbeck shows the human condition of men while they survive in the American depression.
Humans are connected with one another through simple gravity-like forces that are ubiquitous and powerful, but in Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck and The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, the characters isolate themselves. While the english poet John Donne once said that “No man is an island”, his contemporary John Milton believed that “Solitude sometimes is best society”. So, which is true? In both books the characters act as if they are“islands”, but this does not create the “best society”.The characters’ detached isolation toward one another causes them to end up feeling empty and disconnected. In both Of Mice and Men and The Outsiders characters build mental barriers to protect themselves