The Use Animals To Show The Main Themes In Of Mice And Men
How does Steinbeck use animals to show the main themes in Of Mice and
This story is about two men (George and Lennie) and their desperate
hope in that they will raise enough money so that they can purchase a
plot of land and “live of the fatta the land”. In this essay I will
discuss how Steinbeck uses animals to show the themes of, friendship/loneliness,
anger/violence, cruelty/kindness and dreams. The main points that I
will be discussing are, how Lennie connects with animals, how
Steinbeck portrays loneliness through animals, how the American dream
fuels and directs the story, how Crooks is treated like an animal and
has animal instincts himself, how killing of animals foreshadows the
story, how Steinbeck uses animals to symbolize or reflect different
emotions the characters are experiencing and the way Lennie is killed
at the end which summarises that Lennie connects with animals in the
most devastating way.
At the beginning of the story Lennie is drinking from the pool as
though he is an animal. “Drank with big long gulps, snorting into the
water like a horse”, this straight away reveals to us that Lennie has
animal instincts. When Lennie and George arrive at the ranch,
immediately Curley begins to show aggression towards Lennie as an
animal would do to protect it’s territory, Curley tries to bait Lennie
into having confrontation with him. This is the same technique people
use to catch animals and that is exactly what Curley is trying to
achieve with Lennie.
An important style of how Steinbeck represents people and themes is
through rabbits and example of this is, at the beginning of the story
Lennie and George are fleeing from their home town. This is shown by
the rabbits as they are fleeing themselves, “The rabbits hurried
noiselessly for cover”. Steinbeck compares the animals to people very
early on in the story, which gives you an idea that Steinbeck will
compare the characters and themes through animals throughout the
A main theme that Steinbeck portrays through animals is Loniness. In “Of
Mice and Men”, Candy’s dog represents the fate awaiting anyone who has
outlived his or her purpose. Once a fine sheepdog, useful on the
ranch, Candy’s mutt is now debilitated by age. ”Well – Hell! I had him
so long. Had him since he was a pup. I herded sheep with him. He said
proudly”. Candy’s sentimental attachment to the animal and the fact
that he raised the dog from a puppy is his plea to Carlson to let the
dog live, however in that era and on that ranch this meant nothing.
This is because in the era in which this book was written animals were
seen as worthless if they were unable to do their job, if an animal
was unable in anyway they would have been killed immediately. Although
Carlson promises to kill the dog painlessly, his insistence that the
old animal must die supports the idea that the strong will dispose of
A theme that really directs and fuels this story is the...
Loading: Checking Spelling0%
Comparing the Themes of Wuthering Heights and Of Mice and Men1171 words - 5 pages Comparing the Themes of Wuthering Heights and Of Mice and Men Wuthering Heights and Of Mice and Men are two novels that were written approximate hundred years apart by different authors living in different time periods. Wuthering Heights, was written by Emily Bronte who lived in England. Of Mice and Men was written by John Steinbeck who lived in California. Although they were written by different authors of different...
John Steinbeck's use of Realism, Characterization, and Dreams in "The Grapes of Wrath" and "Of Mice and Men"2467 words - 10 pages John Ernst Steinbeck has written many award winning novels, some of which has even been produced as plays that captured audiences everywhere. Steinbeck wrote about real life experiences using realism, characterization, and dreams to emphasize his points and make an impact on his readers in order to reform or change society. The realism...
"Of Mice and Men". The question is how does John Steinbeck tackle social issues in the novel through the use of Crooks. Includes direct quotations from the book.800 words - 3 pages Of Mice and MenIn the novel, Of Mice and Men, the author, John Steinbeck, takes a strong stance against many social issues. Steinbeck voices his opinions on controversial rights such as women's rights and the treatment of migrant workers. One of the main points that Steinbeck addresses is his dislike for the treatment of
Effective Use of Foreshadowing and Symbolism in Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men726 words - 3 pages There are very creative writers, which date back to the 1900s, who use plenty of literary devices to help make their story creations a work readers will enjoy reading. Back in the 1930’s, in Salinas, California, there were ranches on which men from all over the country worked. There is a story about the life of two men on those fields, working, as the author describes what happens to them through literary devices that aid the reader to understand...
Effective Use of Imagery and Symbolism in Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men740 words - 3 pages In many great books, famous authors use literary elements to enlighten each individual on various levels of understanding. These devices are incorporated into the journey of two companions working their way to a dream. John Steinbeck, in his novel Of Mice and Men, conveys the devices of imagery and symbolism to complement his words to depict a higher meaning. Throughout the book, Steinbeck uses descriptive words to allow the reader to envision...
Comparison of themes on Wuthering Heights and Of Mice and Men Title: Ram and Ewe1163 words - 5 pages Wuthering Heights and Of Mice and Men are two novels that were written approximate hundred years apart by different authors living in different time...
"Of mice and men" by John Steinbeck. Composed of four major themes, the value of dreams and goals, moral responsibility, social injustice, and the bond of friendship and loyalty715 words - 3 pages 'Of Mice and Men', by John Steinbeck, is composed of four major themes.These themes are the value of dreams and goals, moral responsibility, social...
"Of Mice and Men": For what did Steinbeck Use Candy's Dog as a Symbol?542 words - 2 pages Throughout the novel "Of Mice and Men" we come across certain parts in the book that gives us, the reader an insight into the ending of the story. We come across the death of Candy's dog that marks a major omen in the story. There are also some quotes that are like parallels to the end of the story, although the reader can interpret them as bad
The Significance of the Opening in Of Mice and Men1457 words - 6 pages The Significance of the Opening in Of Mice and Men The novel opening is scene setting; Steinbeck wrote it with lots of descriptive words with many colour words, "yellow sands" and "white, recumbent limbs." The first page concentrates on natural beauty, with no mention of anything man-made. The beginning of the text must be calm and peaceful to contrast with the more violent and upsetting end. The opening scene is...
The main themes in the lord of816 words - 3 pages In the novel Lord of the Flies, there are many different themes that are presented to the reader to add to the richness of the story. Many conflicts arise and basically in...
Examining the Relationships Between Characters in To Kill a Mockingbird and Of Mice and Men579 words - 2 pages Relationships are key to stories, the most interesting stories keep the reader guessing as to what is to happen further on in a relationship. In life relationships are key, that is why solitary confinement is the worst possible punishment to a human being. Every person has different views as to what a good relationship is, in this following essay I will try to put across my views. In the book “ To Kill A Mockingbird” the relationship between...
Just as Isabella Linton serves as Catherine’s foil, Edgar Linton serves as Heathcliff’s. Edgar is born and raised a gentleman. He is graceful, well-mannered, and instilled with civilized virtues. These qualities cause Catherine to choose Edgar over Heathcliff and thus to initiate the contention between the men. Nevertheless, Edgar’s gentlemanly qualities ultimately prove useless in his ensuing rivalry with Heathcliff. Edgar is particularly humiliated by his confrontation with Heathcliff in Chapter XI, in which he openly shows his fear of fighting Heathcliff. Catherine, having witnessed the scene, taunts him, saying, “Heathcliff would as soon lift a finger at you as the king would march his army against a colony of mice.” As the reader can see from the earliest descriptions of Edgar as a spoiled child, his refinement is tied to his helplessness and impotence.
Charlotte Brontë, in her preface to the 1850 edition of Wuthering Heights, refers to Edgar as “an example of constancy and tenderness,” and goes on to suggest that her sister Emily was using Edgar to point out that such characteristics constitute true virtues in all human beings, and not just in women, as society tended to believe. However, Charlotte’s reading seems influenced by her own feminist agenda. Edgar’s inability to counter Heathcliff’s vengeance, and his naïve belief on his deathbed in his daughter’s safety and happiness, make him a weak, if sympathetic, character.
More characters from Wuthering Heights