This essay shall set out to discuss the recurring theme of loneliness evident in "Of Mice And Men" by John Steinbeck. I shall be writing about some very different characters, who all have this one trait in common. Loneliness affects many of the characters, and Steinbeck seems to show that it is a natural and inevitable result of the kind of life they are forced to lead.
Every character in the story exhibits loneliness. Curley's wife seeks the attention of the farm hands as a substitute for the lack of attention from the abusive Curley. Crooks keeps to himself because he believes that the white people want nothing to do with a Negro. Candy's only friend is his dog, and when his dog dies, he despairs. This essay will focus on specifically two characters whom are the most victim of loneliness a theme that Steinbeck tries to portray throughout the book. One of the ways Steinbeck establishes the theme of loneliness is through setting itself. Steinbeck raises questions in the mind of the reader that the novel would be based on loneliness. The first line read "A few miles south of Soledad". This is a clever idea by Steinbeck as "Soledad" means loneliness in Spanish. The title "Of Mice and Men".
Firstly Steinbeck portrays Curley's wife as a lonely character. Newly married and in a strange place, she is forbidden by Curley to talk to anyone but him. To counter this, she constantly approaches the ranch hands on the excuse of looking for Curley. The only result is that the men regard her as a "slut", and Curley becomes even more intensely jealous. On George and Lennie's first encounter with her, Lennie admires her and says "Gosh, she was purty". George lashes back fiercely, saying "Don't you even take a look at that bitch. I don't care what she says and what she does. I seen 'em poison before, but I never seen no piece of jail bait worse than her. This is implying that that George doesn’t want Lennie to get close to Curley’s wife because
"They left all the weak ones...