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The significance of Slim in 'Of Mice and Men' By John Steinbeck.

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Introduction

Danielle Llewellyn 11o Year11 Coursework The significance of Slim in 'Of Mice and Men' By John Steinbeck. In the novel 'Of Mice and Men' written by John Steinbeck, we are first introduced to Slim, when George and Lennie arrive at the ranch; he is first mentioned when they are both told to "Go out with Slim's team", which suggests that Slim is probably the leader of the a team, which suggests the fact that he is a good worker. Slim also tries to make everyone his favourite by saying things like "hope you get on my team", which suggests that he is a kind person. Slim was different from the others, by the fact that he does not seem to want something outside of what he has, he is not beaten by a dream, and he has not laid out schemes. Slim seems to have somehow reached the sad conclusion that dreams seem to lead to despair. He doesn't have any dreams because he notices the fact that dreams don't come true. They are only fantasies in the mind that depress you, if it isn't turned into reality. In the novel, dreams are one of the ways to stop the lonely feeling. Although it seems as though Slim has no companion like other men, there is a difference, Slim chooses to be alone. ...read more.

Middle

He also offers the pup to Lennie, which shows he can tell what other people want, for example Lennie enjoys petting small animals, and Slim finds this out and wants to help him out. Slim is always being asked for his advice and opinion on things, Slim seems to even be forward and confident when speaking to Candy by the way "Candy looked a long time at Slim to try and find some reversal, and Slim gave him none". Slim seems to be the total opposite of Curley and it shows the contrast between the two, when Steinbeck describes how Curley "bounced in" Slim is more compassionate and cares for others rather than thinking about himself all the time. This point is amplified in the talk between Slim and George. George doesn't seem to have anyone to talk to apart from Slim. George cannot have a satisfactory conversation with Lennie because Lennie either does not remember, or does not reply. So George finds comfort in talking to Slim. He is relaxed in front of Slim because when George first meets Slim he does not put his defences up like normally. George openly calls Lennie a "big bastard"in front of him; this shows that George is relaxed before Slim. As he is relaxed around Slim, and recognises that he is a trustworthy friend, George tells him about the events in Weed. ...read more.

Conclusion

Slim seems to linger in the shadow of his overwhelming description, throughout the novel. He served as the fearless, decision maker when conflicts arise among workers and wins the confidence of George offering advice, comfort and quiet words of wisdom. Slim has many functions in the novel. For example through Slim we found out information from George and this, then influences our opinions in events further on in the novel. Through Slim Steinbeck uses him to show the problems in society at the time. Slim is the ideal friend and brings the best out of people. Also some people, when compared to Slim's God-like individuality, appear to be more spiteful and wicked. Slim also keeps reminding the reader of Lennie's strength but his incapability of controlling it. It teaches us the fact that, not all ranch workers are uneducated and uncivilised. Slim seems to be a thinker and had a great understanding of people that not many people had on the ranch, this appeals to the audiences sense of sympathy. He seems to emphasise and have compassion for anyone. For example when they are talking about the pups, Slim seems to show a keen interest of what they were on about, he cares about what other people find important. He also offers the pup to Lennie, which shows he can tell what other people want, for example Lennie enjoys petting small animals, and Slim finds this out and wants to help him out. ...read more.

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