Profanity In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

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Of Mice and Men is a book both widely criticized and praised. Once hailed by the Nobel prize judges in 1962 for his realism and sympathetic humor, John Steinbeck is now under attack in the United States. Steinbeck’s story of the difficulties faced by the migrant fieldworkers is a fixture on high-school syllabi in the United States and beyond, but has also become one of America’s most frequently challenged books due to over 100 counts of profanities, morbid and depressing themes, and the authors alleged “anti-business attitude.” Others have called the book derogatory towards African Americans, women, and the developmentally disabled” ( Although there are objections to content, Of Mice and Men should not be banned because despite profanity…show more content…
The book was and is mainly objected to being banned by parents who did not want their 14-16 year old child to read such foul language. On the contrary, many teachers find that the book’s profanity is not an issue for parents or students to distress over. Joseph Millchap, a high school English teacher, has taught Of Mice and Men for the past five years. He believes once the book is understood and explained, that the profanity is not a problem by saying, “there’s a lot that might make parents worried for their child, but once they see the purpose—that we’re not throwing something at their kids for shock value, then it becomes a safe environment to discuss issues that the students are going to have to deal with in life” (Millchap 2). He later goes on to express his firm belief that this book provides study for many types of literary techniques such as sentence structure, further proving the point that profanity is not something for parents and students alike to stress over. To expand upon an educational standpoint, this book is not only used for English, but also for United States History classes as…show more content…
In the same way, students who are studying this book may look for a true companion in their everyday lives. The book demonstrates that even though George has to make a lot of sacrifices in exchange for their friendship, he is always ready to vouch for Lennie and protect his dream of a better life until the end. This theme is exemplified in Bernard E. Rollins paper on the relationship between George and Lennie and the need for companionship. He writes, “Although loneliness is a prominent theme in the novel, George and Lennie’s unique friendship runs like a red thread through the story and one can read between the lines how valuable this friendship is to both of them. In spite of the fact that George and Lennie’s friendship is not always easy for George to handle because of Lennie’s shortcomings, George is always ready to vouch for Lennie” (Rollins 21). For example, he assures both the boss and the other workers that Lennie is a good worker and therefore deserves the job “...he’s sure a hell of a good worker. Strong as a bull” (Steinbeck 24). Lastly, George considers himself and Lennie lucky to have each other and thinks that they are not as lonely as the other workers because they have each other. They also have their dream of having their own place together, a dream
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