The Character of Lennie in John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men

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The Character of Lennie in Of Mice and Men

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Have you ever read Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck? If so, you probably remember Lennie, George’s companion. Throughout the novel, Lennie and George dream of having their own farm. They work on a ranch to save money for their dream farm. Lennie is a big, strong, man with rounded features. He is at times very forgetful, absent-minded, and one-dimensional.

First of all, Lennie is greatly forgetful. In the beginning of the novel, Lennie kept asking George where they were going (Steinbeck 4). One character, Crooks, takes advantage of his forgetfulness. Because Lennie would forget anything Crooks told him, he was relieved he could talk to somebody without worrying about him telling anybody else. He often forgot what George told him not to do, like talk or even look at Curley’s wife.

Next to being forgetful, Lennie is absent-minded for a good portion of the novel. He is unaware of what he’s doing sometimes until he has done it. For example, he enjoyed to pet soft objects. While living in Weed, he was “petting” a woman’s dress and the woman started to scream (Steinbeck 11).

Lennie didn’t know what he was doing wrong. Once Lennie was given a puppy, he accidentally killed it because he was too rough with it. Eventually, he would kill Curley’s wife too by breaking her neck when told he could pet her hair. Again, Lennie did not know what he was doing wrong until it was done.

Throughout the novel, there is really only one thing on Lennie’s mind, tending to the rabbits once he and George had their farm. After Crooks was done telling Lennie his childhood story, Lennie asks a question about rabbits (Steinbeck 70). This is an example of Lennie having only one thing on his mind.

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