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Isolation In Of Mice And Men Analyzes The John Steinbeck Novel, Of Mice And Men. Explores The Theme Of Isolation, Particularly As It Relates To The Character Of Lennie

745 words - 3 pages

Often overlooked is one's intellectual self. In the story, Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck, however, it isn't going unnoticed. Portrayed perfectly as the victim of low intelligence, Lennie is the target for many attacks. It's as if an invisible barrier has been put up, in which he can't be viewed as an equal. This barrier is built by both Lennie's low intelligence and gargantuan size. Lennie is strong in the arm, thick in the head; these two opposing factors do not go well together. It will cause much suffering to both him and others. Lennie's impetuous actions and mental deficiency causes him to lose his life, which in return, destroys the dreams of others and their desires.Like many children, Lennie loves to touch soft things, but his love for soft things causes the first of many incidents. "Dumb bastard like he is, he wants to touch ever'thing he likes..." (41). He loves ...view middle of the document...

He can't remember that George told him to "keep away from her, 'cause she's a rattrap if I ever seen one" (32). As soon as Lennie finds out how soft Curley's wife's hair is, he instantly falls in love with it. His love of soft things instantly overwhelms the rest of his thoughts. His mental disability causes him to forget everything George taught him: about not going near her, about how she is trouble. Even though he didn't want any trouble, her hair reminds him of the rabbits. As soon as Curley's wife starts to get uncomfortable and asks him to stop, Lennie can't. Curley's wife is suddenly in horror, so she yells out for help. Upon hearing this, Lennie instantaneously cups his massive hands around her mouth and nose, knowing what consequences will follow if he gets caught in trouble again. Lennie's childish actions causes Curley's wife to suffocate. It takes a few moments for Lennie to react to what he has done. "(George) Lennie--if you jus' happen to get in trouble like you always done before, want you to come right here an' hide in the brush" (15). This is the only thought he can think of at this point, so he sets out for the river.George eventually finds out about the death of Curley's wife so he sets out and kills Lennie at the river. Lennie dies a gentle death, thinking only the happiest thoughts. The moment before he died, his mind is filled with their farm and the rabbits. Steinbeck reminds you that Lennie is still as gentle as he ever is, despite the fact that he killed Curley's wife. Just as the dream is given a little boost by Candy, who made it seem that this vision is about to become reality, it comes to a crashing end.Even though Lennie is born with this disability, it is not only him who receives the suffering; others as well are forced to live with it. Both George and Candy's dreams are shattered; Curley is left all alone, and Curley's wife is killed by a complete stranger. In a world of lost dreams and loneliness, John Steinbeck portrays Lennie as the perfect victim of both. Not only does Lennie suffer from this mental disability, others around him suffer great losses as well.

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