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Of Mice and Men - Theme of Lonliness in the Book

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Of Mice and Men Literary Analysis

Of Mice and Men, written by John Steinbeck, is a book that can be analyzed and broken down into a vast majority of themes. One of the predominant themes found in this book is loneliness. Many characters in this book are affected by loneliness and they all demonstrate it in one way or another throughout the book. Examples of these characters are Curley's Wife, Crooks, and Candy.

All through the book Curley's Wife is very "open" to everyone she meets. The reason for this can be interpreted by her and Curley's "so-called" marriage. The relationship between Curley's Wife and Curley seems to be somewhat unstable as he is always asking "Any you guys seen my wife?" (pg. ). This also shows how protective Curley seems to be as he is always checking up on where his wife is. Curley's insecurity seems to cage in his wife from having any kind of a friendship with any other men. In turn, the wife gets so sick of being isolated like this and relieves her loneliness by conducting secret conversations with many other men on the ranch. As a result many of the ranch hands see her as a tramp but it can be viewed that all she really wants is a person to talk to.

Crooks also feels a great deal of loneliness, as he is an outcast on the ranch. He lives in his own room where hardly anybody ever bothers him. He is never invited to play cards or do anything fun with the other guys. One day a curious Lenny asked, "Why ain't you wanted?" Crooks replies "Cause I'm black. They play cards in there, but I can't play because I'm black. They think I stink. Well I tell you, you all stink to me" (pg. ). Crooks' attitude towards this is shown when he saw Lennie playing with his puppy outside of Crooks' quarters. Crooks states that "if me, as a black man, is not allowed in the white quarters, then white men are not allowed in mine" (pg. ). However this is merely a front as the more open side of Crooks is shown later on in the book.

Candy also feels the burden of loneliness and shows it by his relationship with his sheep dog. The dog, being described as "ancient", "stinky", and "half-blind", had been in Candy's life for a very long time and Candy had grown attached to it. Once the other farmhands had finally gotten

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