How does Lennie feel after the fight with Curley? What does this reveal about his character?

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readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Steinbeck - Of Mice and Men

I don't think we can call what happened between Curley and Lennie a fight. Curley actually attacked Lennie, and Lennie reluctantly defended himself. Two quotes in particular show exactly what happened:

He slashed at Lennie with his left, and then smashed down his nose with a right. Lennie gave a cry of terror. Blood welled from his nose. “George,” he cried. “Make ‘um let me alone, George.” He backed until he was against the wall, and Curley followed, slugging him in the face. Lennie’s hands remained at his sides; he was too frightened to defend himself.

This quote shows that Lennie did not even defend himself. Lennie is not the aggressor, and he did not want any trouble.  In fact, Lennie is like a scared child. He actually asked George to make it stop. This show what kind of man Lennie is. 

After Lennie crushed Curley's hand, Lennie cried. He felt horrible for hurting a man, even if this man was bashing him. He said: 

“I didn’t wanta, I didn’t wanta hurt him.”

This quote shows that there is no mean bone in Lennie's body.