Journal on John Steinbeck “Of mice and men”
After having read the description of the novel, my expectations were that this would have been a typical story of a good ending, no matter how thrilling the suspension dots In the end may make the plot seem to be. However, upon reading It, It was becoming clearer that Steinbeck use of certain details and foreshadowing In the text was already suggesting the outcome resulting otherwise. For example at the very beginning the name of the town Leonie and George were going through, Scolded, already makes the reader think that the place is connected with solitary, loneliness.
These guys have a dream together, that Leonie likes to be repeated to him by George. They want to earn enough money to buy a farm, and “live off the fat the Ian with Leonie tending the rabbits. A common during their days, American Dream. It did seem that they could have achieved it, until the first foreshadowing came into place. When when was mentioned Lien’s enjoyment of touching nice-looking, soft objects/ material. That got him In trouble at a previous farm where George and Leonie were working on, when he Just wanted to feel a girl’s dress, and he was too simple-minded o let go of It, when the girl began to protest.
The novel started with George and Leonie running away from the previous farm to work In another one, In order to escape persecution and to start earning for their American dream. New individual characters then came into play – Candy, Crooks, Curler, and Curler’s wife but it would be more appropriate to describe the main characters Leonie and George first. Leonie is a strong, tall, but a mentally handicapped man, who trusts and admires George completely. He was perhaps a rather simple character, but one that arises sympathy cause of his defensiveness against Curlers aggression, and taunts from Curlers wife.
George can be described as exact opposite of Leonie, being short-tempered, quick-witted but nevertheless caring for Leonie. Even though he showed frustration numerous times because he couldn’t fully enjoy life as he had to look after Leonie, he was devoted In protecting Leonie from trouble until the very end. Candy was an ageing worker that lost halls hand In an accident on that farm, and was expecting from day-to-day to be fired because of his disability. Just like his dog was shot by Carlson, after the dog was too old to be useful in his opinion.
He also wanted to contribute in George and Leonie getting a farm, and seemed to believe that it was going to be possible even after Leonie unintentionally killed Curlers wife. Crooks was a black man with a crooked back, smart, but always left out of from the workers’ company, and therefore, extremely lonely. He admitted that when Leonie came into his room and started talking to him. He was one of the vulnerable type of characters, but like Curlers wife, turns that vulnerability into a weapon and attacks characters who are even lower than himself, like Leonie.
He suggested to Leonie that George wouldn’t come back and the dreadful possibilities and asked what would Leonie do then. Nevertheless It seemed that the discrimination Is what made him a little cruel and lonely In that sense. Curler represented an evil character In the novel, being arrogant and always trying to pick fights, especially with guys bigger than him. He was fight with Leonie for no particular reason, Leonie smashes every bone in his hand in self-defense. Curlers wife was described by other characters as a Sailboat or a tart.
She was unhappily married and out of boredom and loneliness walked around the inch and flirted with the other workers. Her death from Lien’s hands caused an end to George and Lien’s American dream. Carlson was the type of character, who, after working for years in the farm and caring only about himself became selfish to the point where he couldn’t understand what friendship simply meant. He shot Candy’s old dog because he saw that it only as useless, and ћstinking”, even though that was the only friend Candy had. There were many themes presented in the novel, some of which strongly describe the grim aspects of human nature.
Nearly all the harasser Of Mice and Men including George, Leonie, Candy, Crooks, and Curlers wife, admit, at one time or another, to have a sense of loneliness and isolation. That is what sort of connects them all. Each of them desires the comfort of a friend, but will settle for the attentive ear of a stranger. Curlers wife admits to Candy, Crooks, and Leonie that she is unhappily married, and Crooks tells Leonie that life is no good without a companion to turn to in times of confusion and need. The characters are depressed by their isolation, and yet, even at their weakest, they seek to intimidate those who are even weaker than they.
Another theme is the impossibility of the “American Dream”. Many characters – George, Leonie, Candy, Crooks and even Curlers wife had dreams that became unrealistic in the novel. George and Lien’s dream of owning a farm, which would enable them to sustain themselves, and, most important, offer them protection from the cruel world, represents a typical American ideal. Curlers wife’s death, which awakens George to the impossibility of this dream, and sadly proves that the bitter Crooks is right, such paradises of freedom, contentment, and safety are something not to be found in this world.