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Explore How John Steinbeck Movingly Portrays The Close Friendship Between Lennie And George In His Novel 'of Mice And Men'

1016 words - 5 pages

Coursework Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck.

Essay:
Explore how John Steinbeck movingly portrays the close friendship between Lennie and George in his novel 'Of Mice and Men'.

In the novel Of Mice and Men, one of the main themes of the story is friendship. But not any friendship. John Steinbeck gives the reader a very striking and moving image of the two protagonists’ friendship throughout the novel. Almost straight away we perceive a father-son bond but when we look closer, it becomes clear that it is a very changing and moving relationship: John Steinbeck first gives an image of a father and his son, which touches the reader from the very first pages. But as the novel ...view middle of the document...

These first revelations about the two protagonists' relationship creates compassion for Lennie, and instead of creating antipathy towards George, it makes the reader feel sorry for him, because of the sacrifices he did in order to maintain his promise to Aunt Clara. And after these incidents, their friendship turned from a brother-to-brother relationship to a father-son bonding.
One very good and explicit example of their father-son bonding takes place during the first chapter. Here, we see that George is leading the way, showing Lennie "the path to take". We also see that George cares about Lennie in the same way as a father would about his son: "Lennie, for God' sakes don't drink so much. You gonna be sick like you was last night." In spite of the potentially unclear water, Lennie reacted the same way as a kid would react to his dad: "Lennie dipped his whole head under […]. He smiled happily". This bonding is also supported by the authority George has upon Lennie: "George snapped his fingers sharply, and at the sound Lennie laid the mouse in his hand". This shows the parental authority he has on Lennie, even though he has the physical abilities to do what he would like. Coming with George's paternity, some behaviors emphasize Lennie's childish side: "Blubbering like a baby! Jesus Christ! Lennie's lips quivered and tears started in his eyes." This behavior supports the bonding between them, and the childish character given to Lennie. Even though Lennie has child-like behaviors, it does not stop him from showing very smart ideas: "George, you want I could go away and leave you alone? […] Some place I'd find a cave." Here, Lennie uses reverse psychology to get George to keep him. During the entire chapter, we see that Lennie reproduces every action from George, trying to be the same as his "leader": "Lennie,...

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