“Of Mice and Men” Minor Characters: Exploring the Emotions

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The Permeating Sense of Loneliness

Many people suffer from feeling alone and like they don’t have anyone on their side. There are a select few characters in “Of Mice and Men” that feel this way.

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Oftentimes it is easy to feel alone when you think you have so many things to take care of or you can’t make people happy. Most of the time, the people that feel this way do have people they can rely on or ask for help but asking for help is the hardest thing to do for people that feel this way.

Lennie: Supported yet Isolated

Lennie is the character that feels the most alone of them all. George is Lennie’s primary support system, but Lennie feels as though George doesn’t want to put up with him despite what George may tell him. For example, George tells Lennie, “I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that’s why.” (John Steinbeck) Lennie does have mental issues, which could be the leading factor in his attitude shifts.

Curley’s Wife: Craving Acknowledgment

Another character that feels lonely is Curley’s wife. She wants to make everyone happy, but she never gets acknowledged when she does something useful or productive. Curley’s wife craves attention from her husband and the other men, and that is the main reason she feels so alone. She explains how she feels by saying, ‘I get lonely,’ she said. ‘You can talk to people, but I can’t talk to anybody but Curley. Else he gets mad. How’d you like not to talk to anybody?” (John Steinbeck)

George: The Silent Sufferer

One last character that shows immense signs of being lonely is Geroge. He takes care of Lennie at all times, and that’s all he knows. George can’t necessarily talk to Lennie about his problems because his problems are about Lennie. Mentally he feels lonely but not physically; when he says, “But you get used to goin’ around with a guy, and you can’t get rid of him.” (John Steinbeck), you can see that he knows Lennie is there for him, but he has to be the support system.

The Emotional Struggle and Solitude

These characters all feel lonely in their ways but show the same signs of being upset. Even though they have support and people they could talk to; it’s easier for them to keep to themselves. Eventually, these feelings will build up, and they’ll have to let them out: whether that’s yelling at someone or someone. The novel “Of Mice and Men” does an excellent job of depicting how these characters are feeling and how they handle their emotions.


  1. Steinbeck, John. “Of Mice and Men”. Penguin, 1993.
  2. Scarseth, Thomas. “A Teachable Good Book: Of Mice and Men.”
  3. Shillinglaw, Susan. “On Reading Of Mice and Men.” Steinbeck Review, vol. 10, no. 2, 2013, pp. 1-5.
  4. Ditsky, John. “John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men.” The Explicator, vol. 61, no. 3, 2003, pp. 155-157.
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"Of Mice and Men" Minor Characters: Exploring the Emotions. (2023, Jun 19). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/of-mice-and-men-minor-characters-exploring-the-emotions/