Discuss the Relationship Between George and Lennie

In: English and Literature

Submitted By evielsmith
Words 304
Pages 2
The friendship that George and Lennie share forms the core of the novella, and although Steinbeck idealizes and perhaps exaggerates it, he never questions its sincerity. From Lennie’s perspective, George is the most important person in his life, his guardian and only friend. Every time he does anything that he knows is wrong, his first thought is of George’s disapproval. He doesn’t defend himself from Curley because of George’s stern instruction for him to stay out of trouble, and when he mistakenly kills his puppy and then Curley’s wife, his only thought is how to quell George’s anger. He has a childlike faith that George will always be there for him, a faith that seems justified, given their long history together.
George, on the other hand, thinks of Lennie as a constant source of frustration. He has assumed responsibility for Lennie’s welfare and has, several times, been forced to run because of trouble Lennie has inadvertently caused. Life with Lennie is not easy. However, despite George’s frequent bouts of anger and frustration, and his long speeches about how much easier life would be without Lennie, George is clearly devoted to his friend. He flees from town to town not to escape the trouble Lennie has caused, but to protect Lennie from its consequences. The men are uncommonly united by their shared dream of a better life on a farm where they can “live off the fatta the lan’,” as Lennie puts it. George articulates this vision by repeatedly telling the “story” of the future farm to his companion. Lennie believes unquestioningly in their dream, and his faith enables the hardened, cynical George to imagine the possibility of this dream becoming reality. In fact, George’s belief in it depends upon Lennie, for as soon as Lennie dies, George’s hope for a brighter future…...

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