Of Mice And Men

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade September 2001

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Of Mice and Men "Revelance of Hope in the novel" The very beginning of the novel has George and Lennie having a conversation of their dream of owning a little place of their own, "An' live off the fatta the lan" (pg14). How they're going to raise up a stake so they can buy a farm from an old couple. The talk about how they're going to have "...a couple of acres an' a cow and some pigs..." (pg 14) as well as a vegetable patch so as to have alfalfa for the rabbits. The fact of owning rabbits is what Lennie is mainly focused on. This whole planned dream is what gives Lennie and George hope. Which keeps them going during the hard period of time, and hope that gives them meaning too to the work they go through to achieve their goal. Throughout the novel they talk about this dream many times and as each time it is mentioned, is like a burst of new hope in itself.

George although at first seems pestered by the fact of having to repeat the plan to Lennie, really gets caught up in the concept himself. He pictures it every time they mention it and it gives he hope of future.

Although as other characters mention in the novel, such as Crooks "... an every dam one of'em's got a little piece of land in his head. An' never a god-dam one of'em ever gets it" (pg 78), meaning how George and Lennie's dream is identical to everyone else. How this "˜great American dream" of owning ones own land is actually quite a fantasy. As it was predicted, their dream becomes shattered as Lennie unfortunately puts Curley's lonely housewife to death. While the are in a struggle Lennie says "George gonna say I done a bad thing. He ain't gonna let me tend no rabbits" (pg96) Lennie looses hope as he realises the seriousness of what has been done, and remembers to do as George had said and hide in the brush until he came.

George takes this event much more harshly, for when he realises that Curley's wife is dead he becomes stiff and with a hardened expression. In a way he blames himself for not believing this sort of thing would happen. His hope of the dream, soon diminishes as he tells Candy how "..I'll take my fifty bucks an' I'll stay all night in some lousy cat-house. Or I'll set in some poolroom till ever'body goes home. An' then I'll come back an' work another month..." (pg 100). Because he realises that where he left now, is exactly where he didn't want to be, being like most guys. When the novel reaches the end, George's hope truly dies when he tells their dream to Lennie one last time, and then finds the strength to kill George so as he dies with happy thoughts of the dream they once had hope for.

Candy had become aware of this dream of George and Lennie's when they were talking about it one time in the bunkhouse. The two were unaware of Candy's presence and continued talking about their plan. When they had finished, Candy startled them when he asked, "You know a place like that?" (pg 62). He tells George of the money he already has saved up, from the compensation of losing his hand and more that he has saved up in the bank.. Although George and Lennie had originally planned for this dream to be just the two of them, the idea of having Candy's share to be able to buy the place sooner gives them a whole new hope of having their dream come true. All three men now are glimmering with fresh hope, Candy more so for he has been living without such hope of anything for some time. Knowing that he will have this security of belonging on the farm with George and Lennie.

Unfortunately his hope dies along with George's when they discover the dead body of Curley's wife and realise who it could have only been. Candy still looks sadly for this security from George when he asks him "You an' me can get that little place, can't we George? You an' me can go there an' live nice, can't we, George?" Although this is not to be, as George gives up his hope for the dream, Candy does too. As George heads back to bunk house so as not rise suspicion, Candy's emotions become to much to bear. He yells at the lifeless body of Curley's wife, and then recites the dream he once had his eyes set on.

Crooks the stable buck on the ranch, is the loneliest character in the novel. His loneliest leaves him with much anger and very little hope for anything. When he hears of the the derived plan of Lennie and George's, his immediate reaction is as stated before, that many others have tried before and none of them ever succeed. Although as Candy joins the conversation that first started with just Lennie, Crooks starts to rethink upon the plan. He starts to believe that maybe it could be done and says mainly to himself "I never seen a guy really do it." (pg 80).It is then that a he gains a spark of hope, he hesitates realising he'd better leap to the opportunity and tells the two that he's willing to work only for his keep if they needed a hand.

Although when Curley's wife interrupts the trio, there is rowel of words and words all to common to Crooks "Well, you keep your place , Nigger. I could get you strung up on a tree so easy it ain't even funny.". Unfortunately Crooks knows the truth of this statement, and it is these words that have suppressed him of all hopes, for when she leaves he tells Candy to forget he even mentioned his part in joining there dream.