The American Dream In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

725 Words3 Pages
In the novel “Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck, he portrays the American dream is unattainable for his characters, Lennie and George, who ironically are each others opposites, work towards achieving their dream together. Each character has at least one thing standing between them and their American dream. Whether its their race, sexuality, physical, or mental disabilities. Through his narration and use of imagery, Steinbeck crafts the character Lennie Smalls as an untamed animal in order to reveal how impossible it is to attain the American dream as a mentally handicapped person. As readers our first encounter with Lennie is dehumanizing right away. The novel states, “he walked heavily, dragging his feet a little, the way a bear drags his paws” (Steinbeck 2). Steinbeck compares him to a bear stating his hands are not humanly, they are animal like. Steinbeck choosing to distinguish the thought of Lennie ever being normal right away reveals he never had a chance to begin with. A chance to achieve his dream. Steinbeck uses imagery like this throughout the novel. The novel also states “Slowly, like a terrier who doesn’t want to bring a ball to it’s master...George snapped his fingers sharply, and at the sound Lennie laid the mouse in his hand”(Steinbeck 9). Comparing Lennie to an obedient dog. This not only dehumanizes him but also shows his loyalty. Whether George would like to admit it or not, either Lennie or George could live without each other. George is Lennie’s life
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