Of Mice & Men


Throughout the novel many themes are illustrated by Steinbeck, relating to the context of the novel. The book is set in the American period of 1930s when people were classed according to their race or gender.

The opening chapter of Of Mice and Men sharply establishes he important relationship between the two primary characters, George and Lennie.
George and Lennie are portrayed as two completely opposite characters. However, they fit together perfectly. Steinbeck clearly illustrates this point when the characters are first introduced and from then on they are displayed as opposites. The relationship between George and Lenn
ie is also made clear right from the beginning. Throughout George acts as if he is Lennie's father, instructing him what to do, just as a parent would. This is quickly established as George tries to prevent Lennie drinking the dirty water. Lennie continually acts as a young child would. George does everything for him and keeps care of important valuables such as their work cards.
Lennie is portrayed in the novel as a small child mentally, being looked after by his guardian George. Lennie looks up to George as his idol, imitating exactly what he does and then checking to make sure he has done it perfectly right. Another clear example of Lennie's childish behaviour is when he starts crying after George throws the mouse away and tells him he can't have it.
However, George and Lennie share a master and servant relationship at times. George regularly orders Lennie and at times treats him just like a slave. George orders Lennie until he gives in. At times, George has ambivalent feelings towards Lennie. He feels both anger and affection at the same time. He cannot control his emotions with Lennie. This is shown over a very simple thing when Lennie says that he likes his beans with ketchup. George shouts angrily at Lennie for a while and then at the end he loses his anger and looks ashamed.

Although Lennie is so big and...