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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: English
  • Essay length: 1470 words

How does the author John Steinbeck portray loneliness and isolation in the novel "Of Mice And Men"?

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

Katie Roberts How does the author John Steinbeck portray loneliness and isolation in the novel "Of Mice And Men"? John Steinbeck published the novel 'Of Mice And Men' in the 1930's in Soledad. Steinbeck's purpose of the novel "Of Mice And Men" is to indicate to the readers just how life was as a migrant worker in America in the 1930's, when America fell into The Great Depression. Steinbeck also wanted to show how lonely and isolated the workers got whilst traveling to ranches and working. In The novel Steinbeck has created many characters that lead lonely and isolated lives, all of them follow a dream of having a better life and future, but none of their dreams come true all are shattered when things go badly and go back to where they begin. Another one of the characters created by Steinbeck enters the novel already leading a lonely life and hopes this will increase the chances of getting back to where she once was. In the novel the ranch workers lifestyles sound happy and cheerful when they actually aren't, they had to work on a schedule. In the Novel it mentions that the workers are playing Solitaire, " George cut the cards again and put out a solitaire lay..." Solitaire is a one-player card game so this also emphasizes loneliness, as they must have to be on their own a lot to have to play one-player games.

Middle

Well, he's sick of you' He's gonna beat the hell outta you with a stick, that's what he's gonna do". This was his conscience telling him that his dream was finally over and during this time cried out for his only friend, George. This was Lennie being child like and confirming the father figure he had been, George said that what Lennie had done didn't matter. "I done another bad thing'." " It don't make no difference". In the novel the character crooks is an example of isolation. Crooks is the only black person on the ranch and because of his race he has been isolated from the rest of the ranch workers. By being isolated in to his own room in the stable he has had his human rights taken away from him. Due to having his own room and been banned from the bunk house he is not used to having visitors, so when Lennie enters his room he over reacts top everything that Lennie says. "Why aint you wanted, cause I'm black. They play cards in there, but I can't play because I'm black. They say I stink. Well, I tell you, you all stink to me." The way Crooks over reacts to Lennie speaking is because he doesn't know how to react to having white people talk to him and treat him like anyone else.

Conclusion

Her fingernails were red. Her hair hung in little rolled clusters, like sausages". Steinbeck has made Curley's wife into a character like this to emphasis the amount of isolation in her life. She lives her dream and emphasises this in the clothes she wears and the way she struts around the ranch almost posing like a film star. Her loneliness and dream of a better life with a richer man away from her mother led eventually to her death, as searching for excitement away from Curley led her to toy with Lennie in the barn, not realizing how immature he was and how he would react to her flirting, caused him to panic when she wanted to stop him all he wanted to do was stop her from screaming, the more she screamed the more he panicked causing him to snap her neck. The story ends in the same place as it starts, with Lennie and George in the bush talking about their dreams, only this time the dream is finally over and George has to do what Candy couldn't and shoot Lennie himself rather than let a stranger do it. " you hadda George, you hadda" As he didn't want Lennie to be treated like an animal. This confirmed to George that his dream was now over and loneliness was all he now had to look forward to. " Because I got you an..." " An I got you".

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