Lennie Small And George Milton

The novella ‘Of Mice and Men’ tells us about the tragic story of George Milton and Lennie Small; two migrant ranch workers during the Great Depression in California. The Great Depression was a time of hardship for everybody especially ranch workers. It prevented people from living the life they desired. If there was an opening for one man, there would be ten men competing for it. They would work for extremely low wages or even just for food. Many people lived in poverty bartering between jobs.

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The story also took place during the time of The Dust Bowl, or the Dirty Thirties, which was a period of severe dust storms causing major ecological and agricultural damage. Millions of acres of farmland became useless, and hundreds of thousands of people were forced to leave their homes; many of these families migrated to California and other states, where they found economic conditions little better during the Great Depression than those they had left.

Owning no land, many became migrant workers who travelled from farm to farm working hard at starvation wages just like George and Lennie.

This story is contaminated with several tragic incidents, some extremely mournful and others disastrous. They range from loneliness and racism to broken dreams and even death. In the novel, Steinbeck creates an atmosphere that makes us feel as if all the characters are stuck in a cycle of sleeping, eating, and working, eating and then sleeping again. It is as if the lives of all the characters are inevitable and that there is no other possible outcome, the sense that it is the character’s fate.

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This can be seen in the dream of George and Lennie who plan to work for themselves and be their own bosses but in the end they never make it and life just carries on with its natural course. We are informed that George realises this when he says, “I think I knowed we’d never do her. He usta like to hear about it so much I got to thinking maybe we would. ” Also the hopes and dreams of Lennie and George were not doomed from the very beginning, but the fact that Lennie had such a penchant for “soft things” and Curley’s wife was constantly seeking attention, created a critical turn in the story.

After Lennie accidently killed Curley’s wife, it becomes inevitable that mentally challenged Lennie must either be contained or die. This can also be seen in the death of Curley’s wife who is simply a character type and the only woman on the ranch. She is defined by her role: Curley’s wife or possession. George and Candy call her by other names such as “jailbait” or “tart. ” She wears too much makeup and dresses like a “whore” with red fingernails and red shoes with ostrich feathers.

In the barn scene, however, Steinbeck changes the reader’s initial thoughts about Curley’s wife by the stillness and innocence he portrays through her death. Steinbeck tries to show us that even the worst of us have humanity and also from the very beginning, from when George and Lennie had to leave weed, to the death of the puppy, till the day Curley’s wife died it was like a cycle of bigger and bigger offences and was unavoidable or inevitable. This book is also tragic because of the unfulfilled and shattered dreams of the characters.

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Lennie Small And George Milton. (2019, Nov 27). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/paper-on-george-milton-lennie-small/

Lennie Small And George Milton
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