Essays on East of Eden
Essays on The Pearl

Of Mice and Men - Essay 16


John Steinbeck uses the technique of foreshadowing in the book Of Mice and Men. Many scenes in the book link well to others and when one reads scenes that are similar it makes the book a more interesting read.

In Steinbeck’s story Of Mice and Men, two shootings take place in the book. First, Candy’s dog is killed then at the end of the book Lennie is killed. These shooting have a lot in common. To start both the dog and Lennie were shoot by the same gun, a luger. Carlson owned the luger. The dog was shoot by Carlson and Lennie was shoot by George. Both, Lennie and the dog were shoot in the back of the head "where the spine and the skull were joined."(page 105) Steinbeck and Carlson used the same word to describe the pain, which the victims would endure. The word was quiver. Both of the victims friends reacted the same, they both seemed mesmerized and bemused about what had happened. The dog’s shooting set up a foreshadow for the killing of Lennie. When one reads the shooting of Lennie they think about how similar they were. But when they read it they also wonder why George shot Lennie.

George never really liked having Lennie around him because he could never do anything without being asked stupid questions by Lennie. George never ended up getting paid for his hard work on ranches because of Lennie. That could have been a reason for George shooting Lennie, it partly was, but when Candy said "I ought to of shoot that dog myself, George. I shouldn’t ought to of let no stranger shoot my dog."(page 62) Candy was referring to the scene when Carlson shoots his dog. George reacts about this and kills Lennie instead of having Curley do it. The foreshadowing in that is when Candy says that he should of shot his dog, and that sets up the fact that George shot Lennie. Why Lennie was shot added up and created a wonderful foreshadowing effect because of how each thing got bigger each time.

Lennie always liked to play with things and touch them. In the end touching things was what killed him. In the beginning of the book Lennie had a mouse that was dead in his hand, because Lennie had petted the mouse so hard it bit him. Lennie got scared and hit the mouse and killed it. Then later in the story George talked about how Lennie had killed the rabbit that his aunt gave him. Back when George and Lennie were back in Weed, Lennie got into trouble when he had started feeling a girl’s dress. The girl screamed and Lennie got so scared he did not let go. The girl accused Lennie of rape and the town’s men were looking to kill Lennie until George and Lennie could escape. Then in Chapter 2 Lennie did what he had done to the girl’s dress but to Curley's hand and when Curley screamed he just squeezed harder. Lennie next incident happened with a bigger life form, a dog. The killing was much like the killing of the mouse. Next was the last thing Lennie would kill. Steinbeck used foreshadowing in a way that each crushed item just got bigger each time. Lennie killed Curley’s wife when he was stroking her hair; the killing had many attributes of the other kills and problems. Lennie did not mean to do anything he was just a dumb person. Steinbeck made a great book that is filled with connections and usage of techniques like foreshadowing.

People say that Steinbeck’s novel Of Mice and Men had to do with government but it had to do with companionship and tragedy. Steinbeck uses great techniques to make many parts of the book more exciting. The foreshadowing effects in the book changed the book all around. When one reads the book and compares scenes he finds out that each scene has much in common with the other.