Of Mice And Men' by John Steinbeck is a classic novel, tragedy, written in a social tone. The authorial attitude is idyllic, however, as the story develops it changes into skeptic. It is evident that Steinbeck knew the setting and places he is writing about.
In my opinion Steinbeck drew the subject matter from his own experience of working on ranches, he was interested in special kinds of relationships among men working on ranches with him.
There are several themes in the novel. The main theme is the careless nature of people caused by weakness. Nearly all the characters, including George, Lennie, Candy, Crooks and Curley's wife feel lonely, isolated and weak and they try to destroy those who are even weaker. Perhaps the most powerful example of this cruel tendency is when Crooks criticizes Lennie's dream of the farm and his dependence on George. Having just admitted his own vulnerabilities - he is a black man with a crooked back who longs for a companionship - Crooks zeroes in on Lennie's own weaknesses. In scenes such as this one, Steinbeck records a profound human truth: oppression does not come only from the hands of the strong or the powerful. Crooks feels strong when he has nearly reduced Lennie to tears for fear that something bad has happened to George, just as Curley's wife feels most powerful when she threatens to have Crooks lynched. The no...
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...ife, runs away from the barn. George finds him in the clearing and, while retelling the story of life on their farm, shoots him in the back of the head to spare his friend merciless lynching. The very last sentence in the novel means, as I have already said, that Carlson and Curley were not able to understand the relationship between George and Lennie.
Of Mice and Men' was the first book I have read by John Steinbeck and it surprised me very much. The ideal friendship among men seems to me old-fashioned, but I liked the simplicity and directness of the story and George's devotion to Lennie.
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