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How does hope mislead Geoge and Lennie and affect them emotionally?I'm having a hard...

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backspace123 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted January 10, 2013 at 9:39 PM via web

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How does hope mislead Geoge and Lennie and affect them emotionally?

I'm having a hard time trying to prove that hope misleads George and Lennie emotionally. The only point I have is that hope is all they have, and it is used to soothe Lennie. 

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wordprof | College Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted January 10, 2013 at 10:52 PM (Answer #1)

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A Greek philosopher once said, “Hope is a good comforter, but interferes with acceptance.”  This is what has happened with George and Lennie.  By weaving their dream of a small farm with chickens, etc., they have failed to see their economic and social situation in a realistic light.  By not understanding and facing Lennie’s limitations enough to help him adjust in the transient farm labor life, George has limited his own possibilities, such as being some day promoted to a supervisory position on a farm where they have stayed long enough to establish themselves.  Also, by pretending that Lennie can control his strength, the tragedy of the story could have been avoided.  Finally, thinking that killing Lennie will somehow prevent the forces of Steinbeck’s world, and by hoping something impossible, George has condemned them both to a life of maladjusted expectations, and prevented their “making the best” of their real situation.  They find nothing beautiful or worthwhile in their day-to-day contribution to the complex agricultural world where, despite the hard physical labor, many workers did find contentment.

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