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Of Mice And Men - the theme of loneliness

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Introduction

In the book Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck loneliness is very significant and a major theme. Many of the characters are very lonely and some of them try to look for an alternative way of life. George and Lennie have each other, Candy has his dog to keep him company, Crooks is lonely because he is black and Curley's wife was so lonely it killed her. The book Of Mice And Men is set a few miles south of Soledad, which means lonely place. This shows that loneliness is a main theme, by adding in small significant facts like this one interest the reader. On pages 32 and 33 George describes to Lennie how life is different for them than other ranch workers. George says " Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don't belong no place. They come to a ranch an' work up a stake and then they go inta town and blow their stake, and the first thing you know they're poundin' their tail on some other ranch. They ain't got nothing to look ahead to." George also explains the dream where they will buy their own place, live off their own food and keep their own animals, including rabbits that Lennie gets to look after. ...read more.

Middle

On page 87 George and Lennie believe their dream of having their own place could actually come true, but only with the help of Candy putting in quite a lot of money. In the book it say's "This thing they had never really believed in was coming true." They are all very excited and elated about the dream, George would tell Lennie just to pass the time away. On page 145 - George shoots Lennie. As George is about to shoot Lennie he repeats the dream to Lennie for last time and accepts loneliness as he kills his longtime companion. George was extremely sad and devastated about losing Lennie, his best friend. When George reluctantly kills Lennie and all the other guys arrive only Slim understands how George is feeling because the other guys have never had anyone to care about. Candy staves off loneliness by having his dog as his companion and company for him. On page 49 and 50 George and Candy begin to talk about Curley's wife. Candy thinks that Curley's wife is a tart and she is also eying up all the men on the ranch, even though she has only been married two weeks. Candy likes to gossip to other people if they are receptive. ...read more.

Conclusion

When stoking her hair Lennie begins to panic and he kills her by breaking her neck. So eventually loneliness kills her. Crooks is the loneliest person on the ranch. On page 99 Crooks invites Lennie in into his bunkhouse. Crooks is lonely because he is black, he even has his own bunkhouse because the other guys say's he smells and he is not allowed in the other guys bunkhouse. Crooks invites Lennie into his bunkhouse because he is safe and does not know any better. Crooks begins to outline his life by saying he was always lonely. Crooks say's "My old man had a chicken ranch, 'bout ten acres. The white kids come to play at our place, an' sometimes I went to play with them, and some of them was pretty nice. My ol' man didn't like that. I never knew till long after why he didn't like that. But I know now." But overall he has been lonely and forlorn all his life. Steinbeck has used loneliness in many different ways but overall this theme underpins the whole novel. He describes the characters very differently but except for one thing loneliness. I believe the whole world could have been a lot better and happier if everyone forgot what colour skin they had, forgot how clever they were and tried to get along with each other. By James Fretwell ...read more.

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