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Hopes and dreams are important in "Of Mice and Men." Discuss.

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Introduction

Of Mice and Men. Hopes and dreams are important in "Of Mice and Men." Discuss. John Ernst Steinbeck - the author of the novella "Of Mice and Men" - was born in 1902, in Salinas, California. Steinbeck based his stories on his past experiences, childhood memories and the world around him. "Of Mice of Men," one of his most poignant books followed a series of many other successful books and short stories. It was finally published in 1937. The theme for Steinbeck's novella was influenced greatly by the collapse of the New York stock market. This meant the United States entered a prolonged period of economic depression, which became to be known as the American Depression. The Depression brought harsh poverty and long-term unemployment through every failing businesses. Subsequently hoards of Migrant workers came to the west coast of America in search of work. It was mainly men, travelling alone, who migrated from ranch to ranch. They were poorly paid and living and working conditions were often horrendous. Steinbeck's novella was also influenced by the poem "To A Mouse" - by Robert Burns. The best laid schemes o' mice an' men Gan aft agley, An' lea'e us nought but grief An' pain For promised joy." This tells of how even the best of dreams, which promise happiness and joy can end in failure, and leave us with nothing but upset and pain. This is one of the main themes Steinbeck wrote about. ...read more.

Middle

Crooks was inferior to the other men because of his race. He was not allowed into the bunk house, and lived in his own small room outside. The other men regarded him as entertainment, or someone to take things out on. "The boss gives him hell when he's mad." Crooks real dream is to have equal rights and equal opportunity. This is proven when Lennie enters his room. "You got no right to come into my room. This here's my room. Nobody got no right in here but me. I ain't wanted in the bunk house, and you ain't wanted in my room. As a child Crooks was accepted and had his own rights, "the white kids came to play at my place, and some of them were pretty nice." All Crooks hoped for to regain his freedom from of the unfairness of racism. When Lennie begins telling Crooks of the dream, Crooks discourages it "Nobody never gets to heaven, and nobody ever gets no land." However, when Candy joins the conversation and tells Crooks they have the money. The realization that the dream really can be achieved hits him. Crooks then sees his opportunity to be part of the dream. "If you guys would want a hand to work for nothing - just his keep, why I'd come and lend a hand." This is Crooks' chance to get a out of the ranch and achieve his freedom. It is important because it shows how another character clings to the idea of having their own place. ...read more.

Conclusion

The hand shook violently, but his face set and his hand steadied. He pulled the trigger." This is ironic, because now George has no one, he has murdered his best friend, his companion, he is now one of the loneliest guys in the world, and has no future: without Lennie. However it is not only George's hopes that have been terminated, but Candy's as well. He will no longer be buying the farm and living the better life they had always dreamt about. This means Candy has nothing - again, and is to continue his life on the ranch with no future. In a way Curley's dream is ruined, but not as dramatically as George, Lennie's and Candy's. Curley wanted to be boxer and fight bigger me. From the beginning had a grudge against Lennie "He hated big guys, and was all the time picking scraps with big guys." This was Curley's chance - he wanted to murder a big guy. "I'm gonna shoot the guts outta that big bastard myself. I'm gonna get him." Curley was far too interested in murdering Lennie, for he wouldn't stay with his dead wife. This shows his pride and "tough guy" appearance is more important to him. Another them in "Of Mice and Men" is the isolation and solitude which each character endures. The hopes and dreams are a desperate escape from the everyday sufferings, which is important because it makes the reader realise what real people had to sustain during the American Depression. It gives an understanding of how unbearable peoples lives were, and however hard they hoped and dreamt, the best laid schemes would bring nothing but grief and pain. ...read more.

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