Can anyone help me find various conflicts in the book Of Mice and Men? - Lennie and George- Candy and Carlson- Lennie and the lady with her dress (beginning)- Lennie and Curley- Lennie and...

Can anyone help me find various conflicts in the book Of Mice and Men?

- Lennie and George
- Candy and Carlson
- Lennie and the lady with her dress (beginning)
- Lennie and Curley
- Lennie and Curley's wife

Can anyone tell me some conflicts that are involved in each of them?

Asked on by sandranh

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shake99 | Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

It's a testament to author John Steinbeck's skill that he can weave so many conflicts into such a short book as Of Mice and Men.

Lennie and George conflict in the same way a parent and child would. George is essentially Lennie's caretaker, so when Lennie wants to do something that George won't allow, Lennie gets upset - such as when Lennie takes the young puppy away from his mother.

Candy and Carlson are both ranch hands who live in the bunkhouse with the other men. Candy owns an old dog that Carlson can't stand because of his smell. They get into a conflict when Carlson insists that Candy shoot the dog to put him out of his misery (actually, Carlson finally does it himself, with Candy's grudging permission).

We find out that George and Lennie are on the run from a town called Weed where Lennie frightened a woman by grabbing her red dress and refusing to let go. The woman believed she was being assaulted and began screaming, and Lennie was too scared to behave appropriately. This event foreshadows what will happen at the end.

Curley is the owner's son. He's a little guy who has it in for Lennie, probably because of jealousy over his size. He picks at Lennie, finally punching him, until Lennie finally fights back at George's behest. 

Finally, the conflict that precipitates the end of the story happens between Lennie and Curley's wife. Initially they are friendly toward one another, but when she lets Lennie stroke her hair he cannot control his strength. When she panics he ends up inadvertently killing her as he tries to keep her quiet.


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