How much does the background, personality or motivations of George contribute to the tragedy in Of Mice and Men?

1 Answer | Add Yours

shake99's profile pic

shake99 | Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

One of George’s primary motivations in Steinbeck’s novel Of Mice and Men was to finally save up enough money to so that he and Lennie could get a place of their own and quit moving from ranch to ranch in search of work. This dream never really seemed like a reality to George and Lennie until about halfway through the story, when Candy offers to help them pay for a place in return for being included in the deal.

George figures that they need to work a few more months to make enough money to buy the place he has in mind. At that point, however, we have already seen a few warning signs on the ranch that might spell trouble for George and Lennie. One problem is Curley, who is harassing Lennie. The other is Curley’s wife, who is making things worse by hanging around George and Lennie.

If George hadn’t been motivated by idea of making enough money to buy their own place, he might have taken Lennie and the left the ranch before the trouble occurred. As it is, they stayed, and Lennie stumbled into a situation that he couldn’t get out of, which ultimately resulted in his death.


We’ve answered 317,962 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question