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'In Of Mice and Men Steinbeck presents a totally pessimistic view of life where dreams offer the only escape?' To what extent do you agree with this statement?

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Introduction

GCSE English Literature: Of Mice and Men Jaffar Al-Rikabi 11E 'In Of Mice and Men Steinbeck presents a totally pessimistic view of life where dreams offer the only escape?' To what extent do you agree with this statement? 'Guys like us that work on ranches are the loneliest guys in the world...with us it ain't like that...because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you'. Perhaps of Mice and Men can be perceived as a totally pessimistic reflection of what life in 1930s America was like, but through the extraordinary relationship between George and Lennie and the natural dignity of Slim, a balance between the good and the bad, the happy and the unhappy is achieved. The parent-child relationship shared between George and Lennie throughout the novel is certainly a good thing. From the start of the novel, we see George as a responsible character, a parent substitute to Lennie, whose loyalty seems more through kindness than a sense of duty. He reminds Lennie that '(his) aunt Clara would like (him) running off by (himself)' ...read more.

Middle

The dream is of a very small farm, ' a little place', which they own themselves, a dream of working for themselves and of being the ones in charge: 'If we don't like a guy we can say: "Get the hell out," and by God he's got to do it'. It is powerful enough to draw in Candy and, temporally, even the cynical Crooks. Yet although this dream offers an escape from reality and even when the hope of freedom seemed possible, it is shattered and George is left with no other option but to shoot his one and only ally in the struggle against a society which finds it difficult to imagine than one can have a friend to share his fears and sorrows with: '...I never see one guy take so much trouble for another...' Perhaps Lennie's death is down to fate and destiny, the fact that neither he nor George had any control over their lives, as reflected by Slim's tender words at the end of the novel, 'You hadda George. I swear you hadda', or maybe it is in fact down to the rootless American society of the 1930s. ...read more.

Conclusion

Sacco and Vanzetti were convicted of the murder of a paymaster and his guard and the robbery of $15,776 from the Slater and Morrill Shoe factory and were later executed for their crimes. From the evidence and the obvious biased feelings toward immigrants, the case became one where their culture was on trial as opposed to their actions and thus they were bound to be found guilty. Instead of upholding the sacred judicial process cemented in the United States Constitution, the conviction of Sacco and Vanzetti resulted from the prejudice and discrimination of 'old-stock' Americans in the 1920's. For Sacco and Vanzetti, their time was not an age of reason in American history. As "both were guilty and proudly so---- of a cultural crime": "...My conviction is that I have suffered for things I am guilty of. I am suffering because I am a radical and indeed I am a radical; I have suffered because I was an Italian, and indeed I am an Italian; I have suffered more for my family and for my beloved than for myself; but I am so convinced to be right that if you could execute me two times, and if I could be reborn two other times, I would live again to do what I have done already." ...read more.

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