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Of Mice and Men - Essay 23

  • Date Submitted: 12/13/2010 02:59 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 70.3 
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Explore the theme of loneliness in ‘Of Mice and Men’
John Steinbeck was born in Salinas, California in 1902. He lived in migrant camps to work and associate with the people whom he wrote about. The novel, ‘Of Mice and Men’ is based on the lives of migrant American workers, specifically farm workers during the economic depression in California in the 1930s. ‘Of Mice and Men’ is written by John Steinbeck, it was published in 1937. John Steinbeck wrote about farmers who were the worst off during the great depression in the hope that Americans would understand their troubles. The main characters George and Lennie are ranch workers who have a shared dream of someday owning their own ranch and living “off the fatta the lan’”. After the incident in weeds, they go to work in Soledad (Soledad means ‘loneliness’ in Spanish, I think this is relevant as this theme is the focal point of the novel). In ‘Of Mice and Men’, Steinbeck explores the theme of loneliness.
George Milton introduces the theme of loneliness when he states that men that work on ranches are the “loneliest guys in the world” whereas they have a relationship that is “not normal”. The following day, the people that they meet are all lonely. All of the characters in this novel exhibit loneliness. For instance, Candy was isolated for being “old” and disabled, Crooks was discriminated against for having skin colour believed to have been inferior and Curley's wife for being a woman. These three characters all have different reasons for their loneliness. Steinbeck uses age, race and gender to present loneliness.

The effects of loneliness are displayed through the character of Curley’s wife. One of the few things that the readers initially notice is that she isn’t given a name. Steinbeck doesn’t give her a name because he wants to reflect her lack of identity. “Curley’s wife” is just another piece of Curley’s possessions. This indicates how society saw women more as property at the time.
Curley’s wife is in my...


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