Of Mice And Men By Steinbeck Of Mice and Men “I aint got no people,” George said. “I seen the guys that go around on the ranches alone. That aint no good. They dont have no fun. After a long time they get mean.
They get wantin to fight all the time” (41). A major theme in Steinbecks novel Of Mice and Men is loneliness. The characters George, Lennie, Candy and Curleys wife each suffer from loneliness even though their isolation varied. The old swamper Candy, was destroyed by isolation as a result of two main factors, one being his disability and the other being his age. For example, throughout the book the reader finds the farmhands out bucking the barley while Candy is left behind to sweep and clean the ranch.
He lost his hand after getting it caught in a piece of machinery and as a result he is forced to stay behind. This major factor leads to his loneliness. Also Candys age adds to his feeling of uselessness. He looks down on himself as an old worthless man thats throwing away his last few years. Not only is it the way that others think of him but also the way he thinks of himself that forces him to find loneliness. The most obvious case of loneliness is Curleys wife.
No matter how hard she tried she couldnt fit in. For example, when she tried numerous times to talk to George and Lennie she was either ignored or told to leave. She had a reputation for being a flirt so none of the farmhands wanted to talk to her. It was the threat of getting in trouble with Curley that caused many workers to avoid her. George didnt want to get in any trouble with Curley so he told Lennie not to “even take a look at that bitch” (32).
She was ignored by both the farmhands and her own husband and because of this she was being forced into loneliness. George and Lennie are very different from all the other ranchers. Slim told George that its “funny how you an him string along together” (39). Slim mentioned this to George because most of the ranchers didnt string along with anybody. Slim also told George that most ranchers “come in and get their bunk and work a month, and then they quit and go out alone” (39). Most of the ranchers didnt care about anybody unlike George and Lennie.
Loneliness is one major unavoidable fact of life that not even the strongest can avoid. During the story Of Mice and Men the reader discovered the many sources of loneliness. Candy and Curleys wife suffer from discrimination, which leads them to loneliness. The intensity of each characters loneliness varied and the effects were related to the greatness of their lonely condition.