, Research Paper
Of Mice And Men are different in almost every way.? They are written in different times, by
different classes of people and in different areas of the world where life is
dissimilar to the extreme.? The primary
characters are nothing like each other, and the books are written in
contrasting styles.? Frankenstein is
about a scientist who inadvertently creates a monster in his pursuits of the
reanimation of deceased creatures.? It
is concerned with the life of the scientist and his anguish when the creature
that he has made turns evil, and homicidal.?
Of Mice And Men is
about two migrant ranch worker?s quest to actualise the ?American Dream? whilst
trying to avoid tribulation on the ranch where they are earning their
living.? However,there are some similar themes
in the two novels, for example, the loneliness ofthe primary
characters, and the way society reacts to something that is considered
?atypical? by their standards.? In this essay, Frankenstein and Of
Mice And Men will be critically compared and contrasted.? Themes in the novels will be taken into
account, as well as the use of language and the social and historical
background to the novels.?This
will be closed by a conclusion where the main points will be brought up again.Isolation is one of the most frequent
occurrences in the two novels.? In Of
Mice And Men, Lennie is disassociated from the others, not because he wants
to be, but because of his low intellect he is considered ?different? by the men
on the ranch, and society.? This is much
like the situation of Frankenstein?s monster.?
Because of his displeasing appearance, he is abhorred by society and forced
to live away from it, secluded in forests and so on.? ??Finding the door open, I entered.? An old man sat in it, near a fire, over which he was preparing
his breakfast.? He turned on hearing a
noise; and perceived me, shrieked loudly, and quitting the hut ran across the
fields…??.Other characters in Of Mice And Men, for
example Crooks, are victims of this forced isolation.? Crooks is a black man in a predominantly white area.? Black people had been brought to America due
to the Slave Trade, but even though it was abolished, black people were still
seen as slaves, and below white Americans.?
???Cause I?m black.? They play
cards in there, but I can?t play because I?m black.? They say I stink.??Another character that is a target for this is
Curley?s wife.? She is not different
like the other?s for her colour, or appearance, but because she is a
woman.? Even though gender is
approximately even in the world at this time, women were seen as inferior to
men.? The men went to work and to
socialise and the women were to stay at home.?
Because Curley?s wife lived on the ranch with no other women she was
isolated because she wasn?t a man.? ?I
never get to talk to nobody.? I get
awful lonely?.? Her ?unimportance? is
confirmed by the author by his not disclosing her name.? She is only referred to as ?Curley?s
wife?.? Curley?s property.Lennie doesn?t react to this isolation because
of his mental inadequacy.? He isn?t
aware of other people?s feelings because he doesn?t have the ability to
understand the meanings of other people?s actions and words.? ??Used to play jokes on ?im ?cause he was
too dumb to take care of ?imself.? But
he was too dumb even to know he had a joke played on ?im.??Crooks and Curley?s wife take the treatment
harder.? Because of the constant loneliness
they become bitter and twisted, their personalities changed by the way they
have been dealt with.? Neither of them
can see why people have acted the way that they have to them and can?t see that
they are any different to the rest of them.?
??You can talk to people, but I can?t talk to nobody but Curley.? Else he gets mad?.Frankenstein?s monster is more like Crooks and
Curley?s wife in the way that he reacts to the loneliness and isolation.? He begins life with the intentions of
benevolence and integrity but society?s reaction to his appearance makes him
bitter and twisted.? He is denied any
human pleasure and this gives him the misconstrued view that nobody else should
have any either.? ??My heart was
fashioned to be susceptible of love and sympathy; and when wrenched by misery
to vice and hatred, it did not endure the violence of the change, without
torture such as you cannot even imagine??.?
This results in a killing spree and the prolonged mental torture of
Victor Frankenstein.The characters of Lennie and Frankenstein?s
monster are sometimes similar.? They are
both killers.? Lennie kills Curley?s
wife and the monster kills William, Elizabeth, Henry, and his actions result in
the framing and subsequent death of Justine.?
However, their motives are entirely
different.? Lennie?s mental retardation
prevents him from understanding how his strength can affect people.? ??I didn?t wanta,? Lennie cried.? ?I didn?t wanta hurt him??.? He doesn?t deliberately kill Curley?s
wife.? On the contrary, Frankenstein?s
monster kills with malice.? He begins
the novel with good intentions, but as he is repeatedly rejected by society, he
turns bitter and kills because of self-pity.?
Here you can again compare the monster with Crooks, as he is
increasingly resentful through sustained rejection.? ??Sometimes [a guy] gets thinkin?, an? he got nothing to tell him
what?s so an? what ain?t so??.Lennie and the monster are also forced to copy
others in learning how to behave and speak.?
However as Lennie is less intelligent, he only copies, not learns from
it, whereas the monster takes in all the information and learns to talk and
think for himself.? ??I discovered the
names that were given to some of the most familiar objects of discourse; I
learned and applied the words??.Other themes in the two novels are
contrasting.? In Frankenstein,
the main story-line is to do with science and the resulting constitution,
trying to ?play God?.? This is due to
the era that the book was written in.?
Science was very important in the 19th Century and this shows in the
mentioned theme.? This is very different
to the theme of the ?American Dream? in Of Mice And Men.? The novel was written around the time of the
Great Depression, and many people longed for a ?picture perfect? life.? This is reflected in this theme.This leads into the social and historical
backgrounds of the novels.? These are
greatly influential over the novels, partly determining the themes, language,
story and mood.? Frankenstein,
for example was written in 1817, published in 1818 in London which was showing
great advances in the world of science.?
People looked to science for answers and it seemed to pave the way to
the future, therefore people were very interested in anything to do with
it.? The novel is based around science
and without it the story wouldn?t be feasible.?
People who would read this sort of novel at the time would be upper
class, and therefore well-educated, and the story is of an upper class
scientist, which at the time the readers would be able to relate to his
also written during the Romantic period, which influenced the novel.? The Romantic period usually produced work
that was very dramatic and passionate, and Frankenstein is an example of
this.? Mary Shelley played around with
the idea of ?over zealousness? in following one?s dreams and abstractions, and
it?s results.? It has a lesson to be
learnt from this.Of Mice And Men was
written in the late 1930?s, during an era that was full of unemployment and
poverty, much unlike when Frankenstein was written.? People looked to any alternative that they
could and dreamt of a better life.? Most
people dreamt of owning their own land, and earning some kind of cultivated living.? This was becoming increasingly unlikely as
land became settled.? The way the novel
ends is typical of the time.? Towards
the end, things start to look up for George and Lennie, but it concludes in all
of their dreams being dashed and they return to the loneliness that they feel
at the start of the book.? ??You an? me
can get that little place, can?t we, George??
You an? me can go there an? live nice, can?t we, George?? Can?t we???
Before George answered, Candy dropped his head and looked down at the
bay.? He knew.?? The author is portraying the popular opinion
of the time, that things don?t get better, no matter how hard you try.? People who would read Of Mice And Men
would be unlike those who would read Frankenstein.? They would be of a lower class, going
through the same things as the primary characters in the novel.? It is written in a simpler manner, with lots
of speech, and description of the surroundings.? The two novels are both written in very
different styles.? Frankenstein,
as it was written in the Romantic period was exceedingly formal and overdone.? As the author was intellectual and
well-educated, the language is sophisticated and would be well-received by
educated people.? ?These sublime and
magnificent scenes afforded me the greatest consolation that I was capable of
receiving.?Of Mice And Men is
written by an author who isn?t well-educated and has less complex
language.? It has a lot of simple
dialogue which helps you understand the way people feel about each other, and
the way the story is heading, and there is much description to help set the
scene.? ?It was quite dark now, but the
fire lighted the trunks of the trees and the curving branches overhead.? Lennie crawled slowly and cautiously around
the fire until he was close to George.??
Not much happens in the book without there being dialogue so it could
easily be turned into a play. In Frankenstein, the writing is
portrayed in a narration of first person.?
This changes around from Walton to Frankenstein to the monster, but
because of this the book is seen almost as a diary.? Because of this it is easy for the author to express inner
emotions and feelings.? ?Great God!? Why did I not then expire?? Why am I here to relate the destruction of
the best hope, and the purest creature of earth??? These emotions go from extreme to extreme frequently, typical of
the Romantic period.? In Of Mice And
Men, because there is a lot of dialogue, and the characters aren?t erudite,
they can?t get across how they feel and the readers aren?t able to see very
deep into their feelings.? ?George said
quietly, ?What the hell you yellin? about???
Lennie got up on his knees.? ?You
ain?t gonna leave me, are ya, George?? I
know you ain?t??.? Steinbeck uses third
person narration during the whole book.?
This gives the feeling of being ?in? the book.In Frankenstein, you wonder why the
author included the character of Walton in the novel.? Why complicate further an already complicated story?? As Shelley wrote the novel in the first
person, you see things from Frankenstein and the monster?s point only.? You are never told about their feelings: you
have to feel them yourself.? By having
Walton in the story, in first person, you get a chance to be a bystander as in Of
Mice And Men.? You are
Walton, and therefore inside the book as a bystander.To conclude, the books are very different,
however they are sometimes very similar.?
The novels often mirror each other.?
For example the way Crooks and Curley?s wife react to the loneliness in Of
Mice And Men is comparable to the way Frankenstein?s monster reacts to
it.? Also, the way Lennie is isolated
from the others in Of Mice And Men is similar to the way Frankenstein?s
monster is isolated because of the way he looks.? On the contrary though, the novels are
divergent in many more ways.? For
example the stories are very different, set in unlike times, places and with
very different classes of characters.?
The novels are written in contrasting styles, Of Mice And Men
being simple and Frankenstein having very intricate language. ? However, both penetrate quite deeply.? Mary Shelley warns of the dangers of excess
of passion, and John Steinbeck tells of the effects of the Great Depression.