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Comparative Essay on the endings of ‘Of Mice & Men’ and ‘The Half Brothers’

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Introduction

English Coursework Comparative Essay on the endings of 'Of Mice & Men' and 'The Half Brothers' Both of these stories essentially deal with the issues of love, death and what makes a good man. It also deals with the question why people are backward and how we should treat them, and people's dreams and the sacrifices they make to achieve them. The first story; 'The Half Brothers', is set in Northern rural England, in the 1850's. It concerns two relatives; stepbrothers, whose mother dies at an early age. The story has a strong narrative voice. The second story; 'Of Mice & Men', is set in the 1930's, America, it concerns two migrant workers who are friends. The story has no narrative voice. 'Of Mice & Men' is a novel by John Steinbeck which uses colloquial language of how people spoke back when the novel was released, so an easily understood book. He shows the events of the story in short, compact sentences and uses a lot of description writing throughout the novel. He gives the reader a short history of the characters. Where as 'The Half Brothers' is a short story by Elizabeth Gaskell which uses Victorian style writing, with long complicated sentences. ...read more.

Middle

After Helens death Aunt Fanny went to live with them again. Gregory gradually goes downhill from the point of his mother's death to the point of mental retardness. It starts when he is kicked out of school and then is forced by William to become a shepherd. He is constantly teased and mocked by the farm workers: 'many a hard word and sharp scolding did he get from the people about the farm'. This combined with the neglecting shown by William make Gregory mental retarded. One day the storyteller is sent out by his father on an errand and told to come straight home by the road to not get lost. The storyteller is disobedient though and tries taking a shortcut but it gets dark and mist and he soon finds himself lost on the moor. Luckily Gregory was out with his dog lassie and the storyteller heard the dog bark. Eventually Gregory found the storyteller and they left to try and find home. But failed it became very cold and they became very tired. Gregory tied the storytellers' handkerchief to the dogs collar and sent it on its way home. He told his stepbrother to lay under a rock and he then covered him with his shepherd's coat and lied next to him to cover him from the cold. ...read more.

Conclusion

The influence of George and Lennie's commitment to each other and to their dream has for just a moment made Slim, Candy, and Crooks, men who worked at the ranch, their brothers keepers and broken the grip of loneliness and solitude in which they exist. Lennie's longing for the rabbits and all soft, living things symbolizes the longing all men have for warm, living contact. The dream's vision of the farm in Eden dies when Lennie dies. Even though Lennie's imperfection doomed the dream it was only through his innocence that kept it was kept alive. For while the dream of the farm dies, the theme of commitment gains its strongest statement in the conclusion of this book. Unlike Candy, who abandons responsibility for his old dog by allowing Carlson to shoot him, "George remains his brother's keeper without faltering even to the point of killing Lennie while Lennie sees visions of Eden." Owens. It is sad that, in this fallen world, George must reenact the crime of Cain to demonstrate the depth of his commitment. The question what makes a good man is answered well in 'Of Mice & Men' by Slim when he tells George 'guy don't need no sense to be a nice fella' a man that cares for people, cares for his friends is what makes a good man it doesn't matter if they're disabled or retarded a good man is inside. ?? ?? ?? ?? Danny Beard ...read more.

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