The main theme of Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck is fate . The techniques he uses such as the title , repetition , echoes and symbolism.
It is more then just the tragedy of Lennie which is the big, tall, strong character. It has shown the sadness and suffering of indivduals in a tough world.
Steinbecks technique of repetition is effective in that it builds up to the climax of the tragedy. The mouse Lennie had was dead. He had killed it unintentionally when petting it. This situation is repeated further on in the story when Lennie is given a lil baby puppy by Slim, who is one of the workers. Lennie had been playing with it and had hit the puppy for biting him. You know that an incident like this is going to be the downfall of George and Lennie.
The death of Lennie at the end of the story seems, at first, to be the most tragic event in the story, especially for the people directly concerned, such as George and Lennie himself. However, in actual fact, the story is full of sad people suffering in a world where no one really cares about them. This thems makes the reader feel pathos for most of the characters
The men who worked on the ranches, are sad and lonely people. They had no families and no homes. They moved from place to place to find work. Some had dreams of owning land, but only a few dreams came true. George and Lennie were different. They had each other, and they took care of each other, they did this in different ways, Lennie being big and strong protected george, whereas George helped lennie find work and looked after him. Even though Lennie died, at least while he was alive, he had someone who cared about him.
For a while, Candy wasnt so lonely because he had his dog. He had his dog since it was a lil baby puppy, they acompanied each other until Candys dog was killed. Candy was old and disabled, much like his dog but the only difference because candy was human he wouldnt just get shot in the head he would die of old age. He know if he couldnt work anymore, he would be sacked. For a while, he had hope again. He could go with George and Lennie and live on their own farm. part of the story is to show how close candy is to his dog, and to show the tension in the atmosphere and candys unwillingness to let Carlson shoot his dog. This is achieved using varying sentence lengths, verbs and adjectives and also by repeating certain phrases.
Crooks was also another lonely person. Unlike Candy, he was lonely because he was the only black person on the ranch. He was separated from everyone else on the ranch. When in the story Crooks mentions to lennie your lucky because youve got george, this shows crooks is very lonely and sad. You feel a lot of pathos at this time in the story for crooks. Crooks was isolated because of his colour.
Curleys wife was lonely because she was the only woman on the ranch. She was not only lonely, but she was also sad. Her reasons of her sadness were she hates Curly, whom she married to a fortnight ago. She hates Curley because of his jealousy and because she wasnt allowed to talk to other men working on the farm.