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Differences between 'of mice and men' and the withered arm

Uploaded by Admin on Mar 13, 2001

“Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck is a novel involving two extremely different main characters. George is reasonably intelligent, hard working ranchman. Lennie on the other hand always manages to find trouble. He is equally hardworking and honest as George but his simple childlike mind always finds him trouble wherever he goes. where as in The Withered Arm by Thomas Hardy the two main characters hate each other. Rhoda is old and has a child to farmer Lodge. On the other hand Gertrude is young, beautiful and is Farmer lodges new wife.

In terms of emotional stability, there is only one thing in life that is really needed and that is friends. Without friends, people would suffer from loneliness and solitude. Loneliness leads to low self-esteem and deprivation. In the novel ‘Of Mice and Men’ the characters, Crooks, Candy and Curley’s Wife all exhibit some form of loneliness. They are driven towards the curiosity of George and Lennie’s friendship because they do not have that support in their life. Through his novel, ‘Of Mice and Men, Steinbeck demonstrates that often times, a victim of isolation will have a never-ending search to fulfil a friendship.

“A guy goes nuts if he ain’t got nobody. Don’t matter no difference who the guy is, longs he with you. I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an he gets sick.”

Steinbeck writes the novel ‘Of Mice and Men’ using a 3rd person narrative to show how emotionally remote the characters are and to show that they don’t get to know people intimately. This for me is enhances the success of the book as it gives an equal account of all the characters feelings. Although in The Withered Arm it does ‘use a 3rd person’ but not as conclusively as ‘Of Mice and Men’

In the opening chapter Steinbeck immediately introduces the idea of loneliness and the idea of the men living very temporary lives, with no real direction. Steinbeck cleverly uses the setting to convey these ideas. The path George and Lennie are walking on is described as

“A path beaten hard by boys... and beaten hard by tramps who came wearily down from the highway in the evening to jungle - up near water” and “an ash pile made by many fires”

It is a quite similar story in The Withered Arm, Hardy has introduces the concept of loneliness too, which follows on as the novel progresses....

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Uploaded by:   Admin

Date:   03/13/2001

Category:   Of Mice And Men

Length:   5 pages (1,147 words)

Views:   2394

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