Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/27363
This essay discusses John Steinbeck’s novel Of Mice and Men and his examination of the life and well-being of migrant ranch workers in America in the 1930s. For historical context, it introduces the two crises that hit America around 1930, The Great Depression and Dust Bowl, the intense sandstorms on the prairies. In his novel, Steinbeck addresses aspects of the impact that these crises had on the lives of many people in the United States, especially the high unemployment rate caused by the Great Depression, and the migrancy caused by the Dust Bowl. Since Steinbeck bases his characters on real people it is easier to sympathize with the main characters in Of Mice and Men. Subsequently, the essay briefly discusses moral issues in the 1930s, especially racism and sexism, and points out that even though the 1930s were difficult times for many Americans, black people and women suffered even more than the rest. Steinbeck demonstrates this in his novel by creating the characters of Crooks and Curley’s wife. Secondly the essay examines moral issues, loneliness and the need for companionship in the novel. Subsequently the characters mostly affected by racism, ageism and sexism are discussed. The black stable buck Crooks, the old Candy and the women referred to as Curley’s wife. All of them are looked down on and left out. Due to these circumstances, all of these characters are extremely lonely and long for nothing more than a true companion. Finally the essay discusses the unique friendship of the main characters George and Lennie and how lucky they feel to have each other while the others have no one to rely on except themselves. Furthermore, it demonstrates that even though George has to make a lot of sacrifices in exchange for their friendship, he is always ready to vouch for Lennie and protect his dream of a better life until the end.