• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

how does steinbeck present george and lennie in chapter 1

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

HOW DOES STEINBECK PRESENT GEORGE AND LENNIE IN CHAPTER ONE? We are first introduced to the characters George and Lennie in chapter 1 (page 4.)'Of Mice and Men' our first meeting of the characters automatically give away key themes and ideas of what is to come later in the book. "They had walked in single file down the path, and even in the open one stayed behind the other." Even early on in the book we see that one follows the other, as even in the open, one leads the way and the other follows. Steinbeck then moves onto tell us of the two character's appearances, again this gives detail of the lives the characters live and the cultural context that the book has, "Both were dressed in denim trousers and in denim coats with brass buttons. Both wore black, shapeless hats and both carried tight blanket rolls slung over their shoulders" This is significant as during the time of the Depression (1930s) denim was only worn by men who worked with their hands, so instantly we can denote that they are workers with hardly any possessions as they ...read more.

Middle

Lennie on the other hand is presented as his "opposite" we can tell this through use of words such as "huge... pale eyes... sloping shoulders" George is small whilst Lennie is big, Lennie has pale eyes as though to signify there is not much going on behind those eyes, he is slightly absent from reality. In this description we also get animal imagery for the first time, "the way a bear drags his paws." a bear is a large animal which is thought to be rather dangerous, however they only attack when they feel frightened, but later on in the paragraph Steinbeck uses more animal imagery to describe Lennie; "snorting into the water like a horse.... Lennie dabbed his big paw in the water." Horses, like bears, only attack when afraid, the reader is later on to find out that is exactly just like Lennie, the readers are made to believe Lennie is big, clumsy and animal like compared to George who is small, cautious and an authoritive figure. As well as a boss and follower theme, we soon see George take on a fatherly role as though Lennie is a mere child, " Lennie!' ...read more.

Conclusion

We can predict the downfall of the two characters in the book as George tells Lennie "Well, look Lennie-if you jus' happen to get in trouble like you always done before, I want you to come right here an' hide in the brush." He foreshadows that Lennie will get in trouble and should return to the place where they first started. He gives Lennie this command very clearly as Lennie lacks memory and needs instruction. Through the book our main characters are fuelled by their thoughts of their dream, "Someday-we're gonna get the jack together and we're gonna have a little house and a couple of acres an' a cow and some pigs and---" "An' live off the fatta the lan'," Lennie shouted. "An' have rabbits. Go on, George!" George wants a ranch so he can be his own boss and never have to be under anybody or continue to be on the go. Yet again we see Lennie's childlike qualities as he gets excited about rabbits, however real rabbits are only seen once during the book and they run when Lennie and George arrive, this signify their dream will never be more than a dream. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE John Steinbeck section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

4 star(s)

A strong response analysing both language and structure. I think the relationship between the two could have been explored in more detail; George's frustration with Lennie which is then quickly juxtaposed with guilt could have been looked at. At times more specific links could be made between this chapter and the rest of the novella.

4 Stars

Marked by teacher Laura Gater 20/05/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE John Steinbeck essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The Slave's dream

    5 star(s)

    in the plantation, next to the rice, which is waiting to be gathered, it is clear that he has no choice. The stanza describes the slave as having a bare breast and "matted hair". Little clothing and tangled hair suggests the slave has little comfort and is not cared for.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    How does Steinbeck present the characters of George and Lennie, and their relationship, in ...

    4 star(s)

    if he gets in trouble, this is where he should stay for a while to hide. In my opinion, this area reflects the relationship of the two men. "On the one side of the river the golden foothill slopes curve up to the strong and rocky Gabilan Mountains, but on the valley side the water is lined with trees."

  1. Good Night Mister Tom - Quick Chapter summary.

    Drawing Will make Jam Tom is very pleased with Will for being with his new friends Chapter 8 (112-112) Willie goes to school Willie is made to change classes in front of his friend As can't read or write Will very unhappy Tom teaches Will how to spell his name Will's friends come over to sympathise him Chapter 9 (122-132)

  2. Prejudice Within The Novel Of Mice And Men.

    At the time that the novel was set there was not any particular discrimination against those with disabilities, but it wasn't like now where it was simple accepted. Also as there were not that many characters in the ranch, there was more opportunity to concentrate on those who had problems and more opportunities for being prejudiced towards them.

  1. How does Steinbeck present the relationship between George and Lennie in

    This is because George and Lennie are new to the area, they don't know whom to trust and in this way they have to keep some distance from the new people they meet.

  2. Compare and contrast 'Of Mice And Men' and 'The Pearl' looking especially at how ...

    They do all the work but they don't ever get to reap what they sow. This is the reason why Lennie got so excited from living of the fat of the land. 'The Pearl' didn't seem to concentrate too much on the theme of racism.

  1. Lennie needs George. Does George need Lennie?

    The first mention of the dream that Steinbeck provokes the reader to visualise begins with a contrast of other men on the ranch, and Lennie and George. George speaks at length of these men, distancing themselves from the lifestyles they lead- "...the loneliest guys in the world.

  2. How does Steinbeck present the hope of dream in contrast to the bitter reality ...

    Additionally, the declarative sentence ?Hundreds of them.? strengthens his confidence in the fallacy of this dream. This makes the reader question the reality of the dream, and makes the dream seem like it was ?damn? from the very beginning.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work