For Lennie, George , and Crooks, the American Dream is similar: the dream of the independence, stability, and community of living on a small farm. For Lennie more than the others, however, the dream focuses on being able to have animals to tend, especially rabbits. At the end of...
For Lennie, George, and Crooks, the American Dream is similar: the dream of the independence, stability, and community of living on a small farm. For Lennie more than the others, however, the dream focuses on being able to have animals to tend, especially rabbits. At the end of the novella, George is getting ready to shoot Lennie before Curley and his men can sadistically kill him. To comfort his friend, George tailors the telling of the farm dream to Lennie's needs, with Lennie eagerly joining in:
"Go on," said Lennie. "How's it gonna be. We gonna get a little place." "We'll have a cow," said George. "An' we'll have maybe a pig an' chickens ... an' down the flat we'll have a ... little piece alfalfa—"
"For the rabbits," Lennie shouted.
"For the rabbits," George repeated. "And I get to tend the rabbits." "An' you get to tend the rabbits."
Lennie giggled with happiness. "An' live on the fatta the lan'."
For George, the dream is more about gaining control over his life. For him the farm is a place where he can take a day off when he wants, offer hospitality to whomever he wants, and exclude people like Curley who are difficult:
He looked raptly at the wall over Lennie's head. "An' it'd be our own, an' nobody could can us. If we don't like a guy we can say, 'Get the hell out,' and by God he's got to do it. An' if a fren' come along, why we'd have an extra bunk, an' we'd say, 'Why don't you spen' the night?' an' by God he would."
Crooks has a more limited dream, reflecting the more limited circumstances of Black people in 1930s America. He sees the farm as a refuge where he would be willing to compromise and work without pay to get a berth. But this momentary burst of hope and enthusiasm is destroyed when Curley's wife humiliates him in front of the others by threatening to have him lynched. At this point, Crook shows his realization that the dream is out of reach for him as a Black man:
"Well, jus' forget it," said Crooks. "I didn't mean it. Jus' foolin'. I wouldn' want to go no place like that."
Curley never talks about the American Dream but we can surmise from how he behaves that his version of the dream is being able to dominate others.