January Literary Analysis: Of Mice and Men
1. Two migrant workers, George and Lennie, have the dream to own their own acre of land and a shack they can call their own. George is “small and quick and dark of face;” Lennie, a man of tremendous size has the mind of a young child. Yet they have formed a “family,” clinging together in the face of loneliness and alienation. When they land jobs on a ranch in the Salinas Valley, the fulfillment of their dream seems to be within their grasp. However, Lennie becomes a danger to everyone on the ranch. He kills his own puppy and breaks one of the worker’s hands. He also kills a man’s wife which really riles up the ranch to gather a lynch party to go find Lennie. But, George finds Lennie first and shoots him in the head to show him mercy.
2. I think the theme of the novel is the impossibility of the American dream because almost everyone on the ranch admits to having a dream. Curley’s wife admits her dream of being a movie star. While, Lennie, George, and Candy want an acre of their own land.
3. The author’s tone throughout the novel is sympathy for the real world which is engulfed in poverty and human intolerance.
- George and Lennie are not wealthy enough to afford an acre of their own land.
- Lennie is always being bullied by others on the ranch because of his size.
- Eventually, everyone on the ranch gets fed up with Lennie so they decide to gather a lynch party and run after him.
4. Characterization- George is described as a small man that is considered the brains of the George and Lennie duo.
Symbolism- Rabbits represent Lennie’s dreams and impossibility of them coming true.
Tone- The tone of the novel is sympathy for the real world which is engulfed in poverty and human intolerance.
Mood- The mood of the novel is honesty and sympathy because the reader feels sympathy for George and Lennie. The reader also experiences honesty from the author who interprets the world through realism.
Diction- The author’s diction is very informal because when Lennie talks in the novel it is very difficult to interpret what he is saying, the diction is very similar to “The Adventures of Huckleberry and Finn.”
Syntax- The author’s sentence structure is very simple because it consists of multiple short sentences and paragraphs with the occasional forever long sentences.
Imagery- “Although there was evening brightness showing through the windows of the bunk house, inside it was dusk. Through the open door came the thuds and occasional clangs of a horseshoe game, and now and then the sound of voices raised in approval or derision (p.38).”
Setting- The setting is at a ranch in California.
Genre- The genre of the novel is most likely a tragedy as well as a story that erupts realism.
Allusion- The novel has an allusion to pop culture through the reference of Pulp magazines.
1. Direct Characterization is used when the author describes George and Lennie. Another example of direct characterization is when the author introduces Candy. An example of indirect characterization is when the author describes Slim. The author also indirectly characterizes Curley’s wife.
2. The author’s syntax and diction doesn’t change when the author is describing a character because his sentence structure is still multiple short sentences describing the character. The diction stays informal as well when he describes a character.
3. The protagonist is George and he stays static and flat throughout the novel. George is always looking out for Lennie and he follows that role until the very end of the novel including when he shoots him in the head.
4. By the time I finished reading this book I felt like I just met George and Lennie in real life because I could sympathize for Lennie because I compared him to a special needs adult and he should have gone for treatment, however, I do acknowledge the fact that George probably couldn’t afford it. Overall, I recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read.