The Struggle for Happiness in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

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Of Mice And Men:  The Struggle for Happiness      


In the novel Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck illustrates the possibilities that life has and its effects on Lennie, Crooks and George. It shows a view of two outsiders struggling to understand their own unique places in the world. Steinbeck suggests humans have the natural potential to seek happiness although the potential can be fatal or harmful.

Although Lennie does not have the potential to be smart, Lennie has the potential to be a hard worker. However, Lennie's strength did not work with him and the result was fatal. Lennie is an extremely large man who had the strength of a bull. With the use of his strength, he was great worker
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Lennie's fingers closed on her hair and hung on. He shook her and her body flopped like a fish. And then she was still". Lennie did not understand his strength and became frightened, and once again just like a little child he held on. But he ended up breaking Curley's wife’s neck. As a result of his actions Lennie ended up dead. Lennie had an extremely great ability to use his strength and become a great worker. However his difficulty to understand his strength lead to his death.

Unlike Lennie, Crooks potential is his knowledge, and Crooks has the ability to use his knowledge to try to escape the problems he has on the ranch. However Crooks falls back into a 1930s attitude and chooses to neglect his knowledge. Crooks also uses his knowledge to express his ideas and feelings to Lennie. "Books ain't no good. A guy needs somebody to be near him… A guy goes nuts if ain't got nobody". Crooks is proving that he is a very knowledgeable man. When around others he may choose to use his knowledge to express his ideas and become a stronger influence. Crooks uses his wisdom to express his ideas and feelings and leave a very strong impact. Crooks has the likelihood to use his knowledge, but how he uses his wisdom will determine his fate. '"I said s'pose George don't come back no more. S'pose he took a powder and just ain't coming back. What'll you do then?'… 'He won't do it' Lennie cried…. 'He'll come back tonight'---".

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