Lennie is a burden on those he encounters and can contribute nothing more than physical strength.Anyone know how development can be linked in to this statement, and also any points both for and...

Lennie is a burden on those he encounters and can contribute nothing more than physical strength.

Anyone know how development can be linked in to this statement, and also any points both for and against this statement are welcome

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mwestwood's profile pic

mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Not true. Lennie is absolutely intrinsic to the core of what Of Mice and Men is about. 

  • He establishes the essential needs of men
  • He proves the importance of the theme of Steinbeck's, the fraternity of men.
  • He is the keeper of the dream; once he dies, so, too, does this unrealistic dream.  Only the childlike Lennie has been convinced of it, but his optimism encourages the other men to believe and have hope in their lives.
  • He is essential because, as Steinbeck himself explains, Lennie "...was not to represent insanity at all but the inarticulate and powerful yearning of all men."

 

 

litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Until I saw others say it, I was going to say Lennie provides companionship for George and others. I would add that he also gives George a purpose. George seems to need to take care of Lennie, as well as having him there for companionship. George does need Lennie.
mlsiasebs's profile pic

mlsiasebs | College Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted on

As the previous posters have said, Lennie doesn't have to offer something that's easily measurable to be important. While his presence can be a burdern, it also allows others around him to develop their own strengths in how they deal with him.
pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I agree with the previous post.  Clearly, Lennie offers something to George.  It is partly companionship.  It is also, perhaps, the chance to be needed.  Finally, Lennie offers people the chance to be with someone who really is pure at heart and not selfish or greedy or anything else like that.

e-martin's profile pic

e-martin | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

To make a statement against the statement, we might say that Lennie offers companionship. We see this in his relationship with George. Crooks also comments on this idea when he speaks with Lennie in his room in the stable.

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