What are the climax and resolution of Mice and Men?

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readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The climax of the novella, Of Mice and Men, starts when Curley's wife and Lennie develop a friendship. There is an ominous tone about this relationship right from the beginning, as the reader knows that the reason why Lennie and George had to come to this ranch was because Lennie was accused of raping a woman. 

So, when Lennie touches Curley's wife's hair, the readers expects the worst and it is confirmed as he accidentally kills her by breaking her neck. At this point, the reader knows that the demise of Lennie and George as well as their dream is around the corner. The only question is how it will take place. 

The resolution comes when George looks for Lennie and as he reminds him of their plan and dream, he shoots him. In my opinion, George kills Lennie, his friend, out of love and loyalty. In a broken world, there is no place for a man like Lennie. 

kmj23 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Of Mice and Men, the climax occurs when Lennie kills Curley's wife. This action is climactic because it is the point of highest tension in the novel or the turning point from which there is no going back. Remember that this action is accidental. Lennie did not intend to kill Curley's wife. But once her neck is broken, there is nothing that can be done to save her. A terrified Lennie then flees the barn, leaving Candy and George to discover her body.

Following this climax, the resolution occurs when George shoots Lennie. George does not kill his friend as a means of punishment. This act is, in fact, one of mercy, designed to save Lennie from being lynched by Curley and his men. 

Lennie's death brings the novel to a close and also brings the dream of owning their own ranch to a swift end.

brendawm eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The most commonly viewed climax is the point when Lennie accidentally kills Curley’s wife in the barn.

The most commonly viewed resolution to the story is when George finds Lennie in the clearing and, while retelling the story of life on their farm, shoots him in the back of the head, saving him from certain punishment for the death of Curly's wife.