Of Mice and Men: Conflict in George's Relationship with Lennie

Topics: Great Depression, Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck Pages: 3 (1061 words) Published: January 6, 2012
‘Of Mice and Men’ is written by John Steinbeck, published in 1937. The novel is set in the 1930s during the great depression in California. The two protagonist characters, George and Lennie are farm workers who have a dream of one-day owning their own ranch. They find work in a ranch near Soledad which means loneliness in Spanish, after escaping from Weed because of George’s incident. They are met by different characters on the farm that all have a dream. In this story, the characters are lonely because although they are all together they all feel very much on their own. George and Lennie do not see themselves as lonely as the other characters because they have each other and a dream to go away one day together. In the novel there are two main characters, Lennie and George who are friends. ‘They had walked in single file down the path and even in the open one stayed behind the other. Both were dressed in denim trousers and in denim coats with brass buttons. Both wore black, shapeless hats and both carried tight blanket rolls slung over their shoulders.’ From the first sight of Lennie and George, a dynamic in their relationship is established. Though the men are outwardly of the same class (wearing identical clothes and carrying identical gear), one still walks behind the other. George is, of course, the leader, but it seems he doesn’t value himself as necessarily superior to Lennie; they’re both in it together. Lennie is a simple chap who has the mind of a child; George feels a need to look after Lennie and so takes on the role of a protective parent. While this thing going on George often gets frustrated with him because he has to look after him all the time and he doesn’t have time for himself. On this George says: ‘Whatever we ain’t got, that’s what you want. God a ‘mighty, if I was alone I could live so easy. I could go get a job an’ work, and no trouble. No mess at all, and when the end of the month I could take my fifty bucks and go into town and get...
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