Loneliness and Isolation - John Steinvbeck

In: Novels

Submitted By louiisee1997
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How does Steinbeck portray the theme of loneliness and isolation?

In Steinbeck’s novel ‘of mice and men’ there is much emphasis on loneliness and isolation. The novel ‘of mice and men’ was set and written in 1920’s America during the great depression. The great depression was the time in which professional workers became migrant, and caused many of them to turn to working in farmland harvesting wheat, and others had to go and possibly try and find work on a ranch. Loneliness and isolation can be defined as when a person is on their own and don’t have anyone to talk to or not allowed to do things, for example, in the novel it mentions that the workers are playing solitaire, “George cut the cards again and put out a solitaire lay…” Solitaire is a one-player card game, so this also emphasizes loneliness. In this essay I will explore how Steinbeck creates loneliness and isolation in his novel ‘of mice and men’. Steinbeck uses a lot of past tense, for example, at the end of the novel, Curley’s wife is talking to Lennie and she said that she ‘had’ a dream, and she could have become famous.
Curley’s wife is perhaps the loneliest person of all on the ranch. Since she is the only female on the ranch, she is set apart from the others. She doesn’t have a name because she is a female and women have lower statuses than men. As she is the only female on the ranch, Curley’s wife is lonely and sad- something her marriage to Curley only makes worse she reveals throughout the course of the story that she is unhappy in her marriage because her husband seems to care little for her. Curley, her own husband, ignores her. He does not regard his wife as a person needing love and companionship, but rather as an object which can be put aside, pushed around. Instead of being attentive to his wife, Curley is frequently going out with “the boys” instead of his wife. Curley’s wife has no…...

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