Essay The Use Animals to Show the Main Themes in Of Mice and Men
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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…show more content…
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 the weak.
A theme that really directs and fuels this story is the American dream, this theme is recited repeatedly. The farm that George constantly describes to Lennie, those few acres of land on which they will grow their own food and tend their own livestock, is one of the most powerful symbols in the book. It invites not only the other characters but also the reader, who, like the men, wants to believe in
Show MoreIn 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 a vivid picture in their minds. For astonishing imagery in a book, an author uses all five senses to portray an image so real that one feels that they may be standing right there. Steinbeck guides the reader through the barn as he says, “The resting horses nibbled the remaining wisps of hay, and…show more content…
To describe the mood of the riverside, Steinbeck says, “The deep green pool of Salinas River was still in the late afternoon. Already the sun had left the valley to go climbing up the slopes of the Gabilan mountains and the hilltops were rosy in the sun” (109). There is a mood of serenity throughout this quote. Steinbeck wants the audience to feel the calm mood of the surroundings before fate takes an undecided turn. With his use of mood and the five senses, Steinbeck brings a completely new meaning to the use of imagery. In the same way the author does this, he adds another meaning to symbolism. Steinbeck uses his insightful sense of symbolism to bring forth a deeper meaning than the words actually have. Many ideas in books are not written simply in text. The use of symbols makes it possible for these thoughts to cross the reader’s mind. Steinbeck takes advantage of this device to say, through the character, George, “O.K. Someday- we’re gonna get the jack together and we’re gonna have a little house and a couple of acres an’ a cow and some pigs and-” (15). George is telling Lennie about their dream of having their own land. This dream represents the freedom George and Lennie wish to have. Steinbeck does not want to state this directly in text, so he uses the symbol of the dream. ¬¬¬Also in literature, symbols connect with what is going on