Of Mice and Men

How does Steinbeck covey Lennie’s animal-like qualities? Find three examples and explain them. Lennie gulps water like a horse. Dragging his feet a little, the way a bear drags his paws. When Lennie kills the puppy, he circles nervously like a terrier.
Why does Steinbeck describe the actions of Lennie’s hands? What might this indicate? Steinbeck describes the actions of Lennie’s hands in a way that makes Lennie seem very unaware of his own strength. For example, petting the mice and when they bite his fingers he’ll squeeze their heads not realizing that he’s doing more damage than he thinks
What is George’s attitude toward Lennie in this section? Why does he stay with Lennie? He feels that Lennie is a burden and that his life would be much easier if he didn’t have to look out for Lennie
Explain the connection between Lennie’s mose and what happened in Weed. Lennie’s uncontrollable hands killed the mouse and scared the girl. The mouse that he killed was soft just like the girl’s dress.
Describe George’s dreams in this section To find a real job in town and to get a girl. He wanted to own a farm.
What suggest that this dream is unrealistic? They have no money to get the land and raise it. The fact that they would never be able to stay in one place for too long because of Lennie’s accidents & uncontrollable hands
Give some examples of foreshadowing in this section and detail what you think is being foreshadowed. When George says Lennie always gets them into trouble, and when George says he’s better off without Lennie. This could both lead to Lennie getting them in trouble, or George abandoning Lennie. They talk about how they are going to live on a farm with a house and Lennie is going to tend rabbits. and life will be much easier for them.
Most of the opening paragraphs in this section consist of a realistic description of the bunkhouse. What detail suggests the ranch hands have a “romantic” side? “And these shelves were loaded with little articles, soap and talcum powder, razors and those western magazines ranch men love to read and scoff at and secretly believe. And there were a few medicine shelves, and little vials, combs; and from nails on the box sides, a few neckties. This shows that the men actually have the items and materials necessary to look there best
How does the account of Whitney’s quitting contribute to the book’s mood of alienation? Because when Whitey leaves, it shows that he has no roots. This demonstrates the isolation of the migrant worker.
Why is stable buck set apart from the other men? Because he is an African American with a disability (crooked back). His loneliness, bitterness, and twisted lifestyle.
Which character names from this section have symbolic importance and why? Slim – He symbolizes majesty and goodness in the world even in terrible conditions. Candy – He symbolizes sadness and loneliness because he is getting older. Whitey – He symbolizes sudden change because one day a migrant worker can be working on a ranch and another day he is gone fending for himself.
What is the boss suspicious of George and Lennie? Lennie is not doing any talking. George is doing all of the talking.
What explanation is given for Lennie’s mental condition? Is it accurate? That Lennie is slow because he was kicked in the head by a horse when he was little. This is not accurate.
What is Candy’s attitude toward Curley? Why? Candy does not like Curley, the boss’ son. He thinks Curley is mean and that he’s pretty “handy”. What he means is that Curley is pretty good in a fight.
What is opinion of Curley’s wife? Does it seem justified? Why or why not? She is pretty but she looks at other men other than Curley. It is Justified.
What qualities does the description of Slim suggest? Slim is a nice guy. He liked Curley’s wife because he calls her good looking. Respect and Wisdom.
What is the significance of Slim’s and Carlson’s remarks about the dogs? Slim drowns four of them, keeping the healthiest and biggest five. These actions illustrate the competitive nature of survival during the Depression. Only the strong will survive, and the weak will be pushed aside.
What does George’s conservation with Slim reveal about his past treatment of Lennie? Georges conversation reveals that Lennie was adopted and George would take care of him.
What details suggest that George trusts Slim? Slim is respected for his skills on the ranch, good attitude towards everyone, and respectful manner of confidence. Slim was the first one to welcome ‘the new guys’ gladly to his team, and he speaks so kindly about Lenny towards George with an air of compassion that George believes that he would never tell anyone about the occurrences in Weed.
What is George’s analysis of Lennie’s attack on the girl in Weed? Does it seem probable? George said Lennie wasn’t trying to harm her. It does seem probable.
Analyze Carlson’s reason for and Candy’s reasons against shooting Candy’s dog . How do they touch on the central issues of the novel? Carlson wanted to shoot Candy’s dog because is was smelly, but mainly because it was old, toothless and overall in a miserable physical state, and Carlson wanted to put it out of it’s misery. Candy however was against it at first, because he had been with the dog for so long, and it had become his companion to battle the loneliness of being on a ranch.This touches on one of the central issues of the novel, which is Love and Loneliness, as Candy shows Love to the dog by ending it’s pain and suffering, but himself has to suffer the Loneliness that came from his loss.
Why does George’s description of the farm to the novel’s theme of a romantic Eden. George’s description of the farm emphasizes the imagination of what the farm will look like and what they will grow for crops or raise rabbits for Lennie. George also describes the feeling of being a landowner and no longer leading the lonely life of the migrant worker. Owning the land will solve all the problems he and Lennie have which also plays into the idea of the land being the romantic Eden where nothing goes wrong and the two friends are both happy.
Why does George decline Whit’s invitation to visit the brothel? When Whit invites George to go into town with the group of guys, George comments that he cannot afford to waste his money because he and Lennie are trying to put together a “stake.”
What comparisons does Candy make between his own condition and his dog’s? How does this reinforce the theme of responsibility? Candy can relate to his dogs mangy failing appearance as he can no longer fully use his arm. Candy feels that he and his dog are pretty useless. When the men shoot and kill his dog he only regrets that he didn’t do it.
What does Lennie’s fight with Curley show the ranch hands? What does the description of this fight suggest about the nature of violence? Lennie’s fight with Curley demonstrates to the ranch hands Curley isn’t as tough as he seems. Although Lennie doesn’t initially fight back when Curley attacks him, once he responds, he easily overpowers Curley. It gives a sense of empowerment to the ranch hands. The ranch hands lose all respect for Curley because he bullies Lennie & fights him. Lennie is not by nature a violent person, but it becomes obvious that once he loses control, he can be violent. Later in the novel, he becomes deadly. It shows that anyone has the capability to be violent in a severe enough situation. Its human nature.
What does the description of Crook’s room reveal about its occupant? While he is a black stable buck, the dictionary, the bible, the lawbook and the glasses show that he can read and has self respect in that he wants to know his rights, and all his possessions show that he is more permanent than the other people on the ranch
Why is Crooks’ name appropriate? His back is crooked, the result of an accident when a horse kicked him.
Why does Crooks allow Lennie to enter his room? Crooks doesn’t want Lennie in his room because it is the one space is his. Additionally, Crooks is forbidden from most of the places or activities associated with the white men on the ranch; so this is his opportunity to control the situation for once. However, when Crooks realizes that Lennie is someone he can talk to–a pleasure unknown to Crooks–he allows Lennie to enter. He is so lonely that he is willing to let down some of his barriers (at least for a while) in order to talk to someone.
How do Crooks’ words to Lennie about loneliness reinforce this theme of the novel Firstly, it enforces the theme of separation, segregation, and loneliness by drawing another character into a mix of detached characters. Crooks and Curley’s Wife both serve as examples of how people on the farm who are different are disregarded, or looked own on. Secondly, Crooks words enforce the theme of the American Dream and its futility. Crooks tells Lennie, within his speech on loneliness, that having one’s one plot of land is an impossible dream and that success is so unlikely there is little point in trying.
What is Crooks’ reaction to the dream of the farm? Crooks is the kind of guy that doesn’t believe in dreams because he thinks they’re crazy and when he hears of their dream about owning a ranch he says that during his life he has saw many people who haven’t established their dream of owning land. So Candy doesn’t really have dreams, and when he hears that they have the money and everything is all set. He starts believing in dreams and goals.
Show how Candy’s comments to Crooks and Lennie relate the dream of the land to Steinbecks’ theme of economic ecploitation This took place during the Great Depression, so it would be difficult to raise money for the farm. Yet Candy believes they can make it.
How does the behavior of Curley’s wife seem deliberately designed to provoke men? She mentioned that they “left all the weak ones here,” and has put Crooks down just because of his skin color. She has also called Lennie “dumb.”
What motives does Steinbeck suggest for her behavior? Firstly, the fact that she doesn’t have a name suggests that she’s not even important enough to mention her name, thus highlighting sexism. Also she seeks for other men because she doesn’t want to be the house, also known as discrimination. Her goals of becoming a movie star were also crushed.
How is her nature as a destructive character most clearly revealed? She puts down others to make herself seem superior, and also threatens to have the men fired because of her relation with Curley and the boss.
In what ways does Crooks retreat before her attack. Crooks reluctantly says he was just kidding about joining the small farm.
How is Lennie’s treatment of his dead puppy typical of his character? Lenny is typically kind and caring toward anything soft, dead or alive. He “pets” things too hard due to his very strong hands.
In what ways is Curley’s wife also a dreamer? Is her dream any more realistic that George and Lennie’s? She dreams of Hollywood, being a star, and living in a fine house. No, because she sticks with Curley and therefore her dreams are stuck with what he does.
How does Curley’s wife feel about him? She doesn’t like him because he doesn’t treat her well nor let her talk to anyone. His wife never received the letter from the Hollywood guy.
How does she entice Lennie into touching her? She tells Lenny her hair is really soft.
What is the nature of his attack? Curley’s wife screams when he touches her hair and he won’t let go. Lennie breaks her neck when he shakes her too hard to stop her from screaming.
How does Lennie react to what he has done? We see he doesn’t believe they will ever have a farm.
How does George’s reaction to the murder relate to his belief in the dream? The murder affected george deeply. as he had just killed his best friend. as much as people would justify that lennie killed candy and that is punishable by death, george was the one to do his deed. george would rather have lennie be killed by him than by some stranger. The dream ties in, when george tells lennie to think about the little house they would have, and lennie remembered the rabbits. all lennie wanted was the rabbits. so as george told the story, he shot at the part about the rabbits.
Compare the reactions of Curley and Slim. The reactions of Curley and Slim toward the death of Curley’s wife were the same. They both freaked out and wanted to kill Lennie. Slim knew that if they killed Lennie, it would more merciful than letting anything else happen.
Describe Lennie’s state mind as he goes to hide in the brush. He is afraid, almost terrified, that George will be angry. He is afraid that George will not let him tend the rabbits.
The description of Lennie’s death recalls another event in the novel. What is it? The beginning were he and George talk about their dreams.
What does this parallel reveal about George’s motives? George feels at least partial ownership of Lennie’s actions, and he knows that things are going to go rough on Lennie. George basically “shoots his dog” and gives Lennie a mercy killing instead of letting the others lynch him.
Explain George’s last remarks to Lennie. The reason he repeats this is because that is what Lennie wants from him. Lennie wants to be reassured that their dream is still alive even after he has killed Curley’s wife. So George tells him the story of the dream and that makes it so that Lennie dies happy.
Why does George lie about the gun? Because they would have killed Lenny anway.
Why does Slim treat George as he does? Slim treats him in a very compassionate way. He shows that he understands what George did and he knows why George had to do it. To me, Slim does this because he is the only really decent character in the whole book (outside of Lennie and George)
Explain the significance of the last line in the novel. Carlson and Curley are very insensitive. Carlson says “what the hell ya suppose is eatin’ them” because he doesn’t realize that killing Lenny was a very difficult thing for George. He is wondering why Slim & George are feeling sad. He doesn’t understand.

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