Of Mice and Men - Importance of Dreams

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Of Mice and Men: Essay – Discuss the Importance of Dreams

By James Hogan, 10H

Dreams are an ingrained part of our lives, and those who strive to achieve them show extraordinary devotion and resolve. The allure of a brighter future, of a better life, can both benefit and harm, as John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men illustrates. Living in a time of pain and loss, the characters in the novella cling to their dreams. However, these dreams are beyond attainment, of no importance for accomplishment, and bring them nothing but regret. This essay will demonstrate how hopes and dreams are unimportant for success and happiness, as they are unachievable and bring only pain.

Firstly, the pursuit of dreams is futile, as they cannot be achieved. The dream that the two protagonists, George and Lennie, harbour recurs throughout the novel. Their dream is to one day own their own property and to become self-sufficient, and the realization of this dream becomes more likely as the novel nears its climax. However, the dream shatters with the death of Lennie, devastating George, as George cannot envisage the dream without Lennie. The dreams of the other characters, such as Candy and Crooks, are also shown to be beyond realization. Candy, knowing that he is soon to outlive his usefulness, hopes that he can come and live with George and Lennie and to have the freedom to work or rest as he pleases. However, this also is broken when Lennie dies. The black stable-hand Crooks is the only character that clearly understands the futility of dreams.

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“I seen hundreds of men come by on the road an' on the ranches. . . 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. Just like heaven... Nobody never gets to heaven, and nobody gets no land.”(Crooks, Chapter 4)

Crooks dreams of being equal to the other workers, but he understands that he is not considered equal. He briefly joins the dream that George and Lennie have, but withdraws his offer to help on the farm when he accepts that dreams ...

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