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Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck.

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Introduction

Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck Chapter 1 - George and Lennie The physical descriptions with which we begin, express the difference in intelligence and character. The slackness of Lennie's gait (walk) arm movements etc. reflects the sloppiness of his mind. The succession of comparisons with animals (bear, horse and paw) shows that he lacks full human intelligence. In some ways the relationship between George and Lennie is that of a parent child relationship. George looks out for the cleanliness of the water that Lennie drinks, takes care of his work cards. Lennie forgets what he has been told, imitates George and transparently tries to mislead him. The first significant thing we learn is that Lennie likes cuddly animals like rabbits and mice, he does not no his own strength and is lying about having killed a mouse he was stroking. Pg. 31 - 35: Notes Lennie is offered bait in the form of a puppy, but he refuses it and tries to make George guilty, he seems to try and gain an advantage over him. Again George plays the father figure by telling him the story of how they are going to live on a ranch and "live off the fatta the lan". George tells Lennie how they are going to look after each other and be friends, mutual friends, unlike the "ranch hands" who go from ranch to ranch looking for work. Lennie by now knows the story that George is telling him and to him, it is like a game. Lennie wants to be secure, so does George, and both want to be different, but they think its unlikely especially George. Lennie, being childish, thinks that this is all good and well and that everything will turn out well for them. As a last thought before work, George tries Lennie and asks him what he is going to do when he gets in trouble. ...read more.

Middle

He hits him several times and cries "Make 'um stop George". Slim tries to intervene but George stops him and shouts out "Get 'im Lennie!" Lennie grabs Curley's hand and begins to crush it. George hits him several times about the head and tells him to stop it but Lennie continues to hold onto him. Eventually he lets go and Curley is unable to believe what has happened. From then on Candy becomes totally withdrawn. He is obviously shocked and distressed by what has happened. As men come in from work for the night, a young boy comes in and brings out a magazine called "Pulp". Whit the ranch hand - whit is a young ranch hand who is obviously not as bright as Slim but is eager to impress in whatever way he can. He asks Slim to read a section out of the magazine, Slim dutifully reads it. At the pace of Slim's reading we can see that, although he is educated, it is to a very small extent. Soon another man pops his head in. His name is Crooks. Crooks the stable buck Crooks addresses Slim as Mister and is quiet, carrying out the jobs he is set. Crooks apart from being black is a cripple, and to all ends useless in the field, but in the stable he is skilled and respected for the works that he does. He likes his privacy and likes to be seen apart from the others this is reflected in the way he addresses people. Chapter 4 The chapter begins with a vivid description of Crooks the stable buck's living area within the stables. From what is described, we find that Crooks is a literate man, for he has books, magazines and also a pair of gold-rimmed spectacles. During this chapter, it's Saturday night and "anyone who is anyone has gone to town to blow their wages. ...read more.

Conclusion

Chapter 5 p. 120 The chapter starts off with a description of the hay barn where Lennie is. He is playing with the dog. He soon realises that he has killed it by stroking it too hard. He gets angry and upset with himself. He throws the corpse across the barn but he cannot stop thinking about it. So he goes and picks it up and eventually covers it up with hay as Curley's wife comes in. He tries to cover up the pup but knows that Curley's wife will notice it sooner or later. She asks "what you got covered up there". Lennie at once realises his guilt and tells her what happened, and that George won't let him tend the rabbits. Curley's wife then tries to soothe Lennie and calm him down. Lennie backs away and says that he is not allowed to be seen with her otherwise George will give him hell. Curley's wife begins to pour out her heart to Lennie, that she hates being on her own and Lennie is the only person that she can talk to. This attempt is futile for Lennie pays no attention to her and starts to go into his won world o f rabbits and petting. Curley's wife asks Lennie to Stroke her hair and says "feel right aroun' there an' see how soft it is". Lennie feels it and begins to mess it up. She complains that he's messing it up and starts to struggle and Lennie does what he always does when he's scared: he holds on tighter. As Curley's wife begins to scream he covers her mouth and says "Don't you go yellin'" and shook her. The text then reads "and her body flopped like a fish. And then she was still", for Lennie had broken her neck Lennie at first doesn't realise what he has done, but the true extent of his actions hits him and he goes off to hide in the brush. As the sun goes down, George and Candy walk in and find the body. Luke la Hausse 4alpha 02/06/03 ...read more.

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