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In the novel 'Of Mice and Men' how important is the need for companionship to the characters?

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Introduction

In the novel 'Of Mice and Men' how important is the need for companionship to the characters? To answer this question we need to look at the characters in the novel as individuals. In chapter one, we meet George and Lennie. George is a small man who is fairly intellectual, and Lennie is the complete opposite. Lennie has a tall and stocky build, with the intelligence of a small child. George and Lennie share a companionship; they travel around and work together. Lennie is a hassle to George, especially when he keeps getting into trouble and causing both him and George to be fired from their place of work. Although Lennie is a hassle, George seems to need Lennie. He likes Lennie's companionship and having someone to talk to. The same as Lennie needs George, without George, Lennie would not be able to look after himself very well. Lennie has grown affectionate towards George, probably looking up to him as an older brother. Whatever George asks Lennie will do, and Lennie seems to play on the fact that he knows George will never want him to leave. "If you don't want me, you only jus' got to say so, and I'll go off in those hills right there-right up in those hills and live by myself. ...read more.

Middle

Crooks is a lonely soul because he is a cripple like Candy, but he also suffers discrimination from the other ranch workers. They refer to Crooks as a 'nigger' and will not let him join in on any card games. Even his boss shows him discrimination by taking his anger out on the poor crippled ranch hand and only ever allowing Crooks to sleep in the stable, not in the bunk house. Crooks is a very intelligent man and finds it extremely hard to not to be able to share his intelligence with anyone through conversation. This and the discrimination led Crooks to become very hostile towards most of the ranch workers. "You got no right to come in my room. This here's my room. Nobody got any right in here but me." "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." Crooks realises he is lonely and hates the fact that he is, where as the other men on the ranch even Candy just deal with the feeling. Some even enjoy being alone like Slim. "A guy needs somebody-to be near him." "A guy goes nuts if he ain't got nobody. Don't make no difference who the guy is, long's he's with you." ...read more.

Conclusion

Finally she decides to let him stroke it, thinking the idea was harmless. Lennie does as she asks for a while enjoying the feel, but when Curley's wife decides she does not want it anymore he won't stop. Curley's wife starts to panic and screams, this immediately frightens Lennie and he tries to get her to stop, pleading with her did not work, so he starts shaking her until her neck snaps. All of a sudden the dreams and hopes of a few lonely men come to an abrupt halt. Especially for Candy who realises when he finds out about Curley's wife's death that he will remain lonely, and live in a county home when he has to retire as a 'nobody'. Crooks saved himself the pain of being let down, he realised that men just dream and never do. "They come an' they quit an' go on; an' every damn one of em's got a little piece of land in his head. An' never a god damn one of 'em ever gets it." People during the 1930's to the 1940's when the Wall Street Crash had taken place, were very poor and found it hard to find work. Men did not have stable jobs so they would not marry. Friendships were never made because these men had to move on every couple of months for more work. It was the survival of the fittest, where companionship and relationships did not have a place. ...read more.

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