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Of Mice and Men

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How does Steinbeck use the human need for compassion and a sense of belonging to intensify the pathos in Of Mice And Men

'Of Mice And Men' is a novel by John Steinbeck, set during the great depression in America during the 1930s. Some people would say that the novel is about loneliness and the need for companionship. During 1930 a huge majority of people accepted that their way of life was a lonely life, moving from ranch to ranch, staying for a few days then taking their money then leaving, because of this most characters don't understand Georges bond with Lennie. During 1929 it was acceptable to discriminate against people with learning difficulties, black people and women; this discrimination leads to isolation for many characters. Steinbeck highlights the loneliness of his main characters, increasing our pity for them. Steinbeck leaves us with a view of severity of life and that each of these people are disposable that they didn't really matter and can be replaced easily, which makes us feel incredibly sorry for them.

The two main protagonists are George Milton and Lennie Small and one of the main features of the novel is their unlikely relationship which most of the characters don't understand. Lennie is dependent on George and similarly George depends on Lennie for companionship. In 1930s America ranch workers were very independent and lonely. Steinbeck portrays George and Lennie as being different to the rest of the people at the ranch when George says: 'we got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us;' other people that travel around are lonely so despite that they are avoiding isolation ironically they isolate themselves from the rest of the ranch because the others don't have any one that cares about them. Having somebody that cares about him changes the way George Lives; despite his annoyance at not being able to live as he pleases this is actually positive because he



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