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Oxford dictionary describes loneliness as sadness because one has no friends or company. The author of the novella , "of mice and men", John Steinbeck uses different elements to portray loneliness as one of the main themes of his novella. How does Steinbeck do this? He establishes loneliness through the setting and particular characters in the novella. The following essay will discuss how loneliness plays a major role in the novella.

Loneliness is introduced early in the novella through the setting. The geographical location of this novella, Soledad means "solitude" in Spanish. In addition ,"Of mice and men" took place during the Great Depression where a large number of people become ranch workers which evidently meant they would travel around
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"An' we got fren's ,that's what we got" (pg 78).

Who is the loneliest character in the novella " Of mice and men"? Crooked teeth is the loneliest person on the ranch due to his circumstances. Racism was at an all time high during the 1930's which left ranch workers like Crooks in isolation. The other ranch hands did not want to be associated with him because of his skin color and used him as entertainment on Christmas Day by beating him up. In addition, Crooks owned numerous books and he had a constitutional book which tells us he knew his rights.
Although he found comfort in his books , this could not substitute humanly connections that he deeply yearned for. "' A guy needs somebody to be near him.' He yearned, ' a guy goes nuts if he ain't got nobody'" (pg 72).
'"You got no rights comin' into a colored man's room"' (pg
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However, George only plays solitaire doing awkward situation or when there is silence in the bunkhouse.
"Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don't belong no place... With us it ain't like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us" (pg 13-14).
Steinbeck establishes friendship through George and Lennie. George promised Lennie's aunt (aunt Klara) to take care of Lennie since he has a mental disability , George is forced to travel around with Lennie but as the years pass by George confides in Lennie. In addition, George might not be able to have an effective communication with Lennie but he at least has someone to listen to him and travel with unlike other ranch hands.

"Suddenly Lennie's eyes centered and grew quiet , and mad. He stood up and walked dangerously towards Crooks. 'Who hurt George?' he demanded." (Pg 71).
This shows us that that Lennie is capable of doing anything to protect George. Lennie cannot live without George because Without George he cannot turn his dream of tending rabbits into a reality. George also cares dearly about Lennie. Furthermore, George ensures that unlike Candy and his dog, George kills Lennie peacefully and this could also represent George's loyalty towards Lennie to his last

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