John Steinbeck Questions and Answers

John Steinbeck book cover
Start Your Free Trial

In Of Mice And Men Lennie & George, Candy, Crooks and Curleys wife all had the American dream in different ways.How was each dream shattered? I need to write around 1500-2000 words on this so as many points would be very much appreciated. Thanks.

Expert Answers info

D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write11,055 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Lennie and George have the American dream of home ownership. They hope to save a "stake" so that they can own their own small farm and live off what they call the "fat" of the land. In their dream they can take a day off if they like, and they don't have to share space with people they dislike. Candy is also excited about this dream. He is getting older and has been wondering what will happen to him when he can no longer work. He offers to put money into the scheme. The dream dies when Lennie accidentally kills Curley's wife, and George has to kill Lennie to keep him from a worse fate.

Crooks is at first, for a very brief moment, excited by George and Lennie's talk but he quickly realizes that, as a black man, he is cut off from the American dream. He determines the plan to own a farm will never work and gives up on it.

Curley's wife thinks she can break into movies and be a star, another American dream. This was not going to happen because she had no real connections to Hollywood.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Selena Mortensen eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write36 answers

starTop subject is Literature

Lennie and George have a dream about having their own place;'a little house and a couple of acres'. This would mean that they would be self-sufficient and beholden to no-one. Candy has a similar dream and he wants to latch onto George and Lennie's as he thinks that it may just be possible. The dream is shattered by Lennie's inability to stay out of trouble as we feel that George could make this happen, especially with Candy's money.

Curley's wife has a dream to be a movie star; 'Coulda been in the movies, an had nice clothes'. This dream seems much more unlikely and seems to have been built in her imagination.

Crooks is scornful of George and Lennie's dream as his own dreams have been shattered by injury and also by being black in that time period. Time and experience have taught Crooks that dreams do not come true.         

check Approved by eNotes Editorial