Rich With Sadness Essay, Research Paper
When George kills Lennie at the end of Of Mice and Men, he does so because Lennie is a pure being, and will only be hurt in this corrupted world. Therefore, it makes sense that he kills him for love; he knows that Lennie will never make it in this corrupted world. By killing Lennie, George frees him.
Lennie’s death greatly affects George. Lennie is the only thing that makes his life special and that gives him a sense of purpose. Now that Lennie is dead, George has no true purpose. George is just a “run of the mill” ranch hand.
After Lennie’s death, George feels that part of him is missing. He and Lennie share a symbiotic relationship — they need each other to survive. George does “the talkin’” for Lennie and “takes so much trouble for him” (25, 26). Lennie provides companionship for George and is the only person who “gives a hoot in hell about ‘em” (114). Lennie is what makes George different from the other ranch hands. George explains to Lennie that their specialness lies in the fact that they are together. Lennie always says, “But not us! An’ why? Because.. because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that’s why” (115). George will definitely miss this bond.
George’s life switches to a different track after Lennie’s death. He loses his vision — a vision that he shared with Lennie. George and Lennie dream of owning their own “little place” where they “live off the fatta the lan’ an’ have rabbits” (98, 15). Lennie’s enthusiasm is what kept this dream alive. Lennie constantly asks George to “tell how it’s gonna be” (115). George speaks about their “little place” in a “business-like” and “monotonous” tone, but then his speech is full “emphasis” and “shout[ing]” (98, 114, 115).
In the end of the novel, the last words are spoken by Slim and Carlson. Together, these two characters show humans’ potential and a faulty society. After George kills Lennie, Slim is the only character who understands what happened. Slim offers to take George to get “a drink” and “helps him to his feet” because he knows what is “eatin’” George (118). Like George, Slim also understand what companionship means, so he understands how George feels. Slim is an “ego” figure because of his kindness and understanding. Slim shows humans’ potential. When Carlson says, “Now what the hell ya’ suppose is eatin’ them to guys?”, it is obvious that Carlson is an “id” figure because of his insensitivity (118). Carlson has no idea about mercy, love, and relationships; thus, he shows a faulty society.
The new isolation and loneliness that George must face will have a negative effect on his mental well-being. Without Lennie, George is stuck — he will always be a ranch hand and won’t be able to attain that “little place” he so wanted (98).