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The Characters – Of Mice and Men
Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck (1937)
I’m George Milton, and I’ve been working as a migrant ranch worker during the Great Depression. I’ve been travelling with my friend Lennie for a while now, and we’ve been through a lot together.
Lennie’s a big guy, but he has a childlike innocence. He doesn’t understand his strength, which sometimes gets us into trouble. I look out for him like a big brother or a parent.
Hey there, my name’s Lennie. I’m a big fella with a love for soft and cuddly things. Me and my buddy George travel around, looking for work wherever we can find it. I try my best to be a good worker, but sometimes I need clarification and remember what I’m supposed to do. Luckily, George is always there to look out for me and ensure I stay out of trouble.
Hi there, my name is Curley’s wife. I know I know – I don’t have a name of my own. But that’s just how it is around here. I’m always referred to as “Curley’s wife,” like I don’t have an identity of my own.
I don’t have many friends on this ranch. The men are afraid to talk to me because they don’t want to get in trouble with my husband, the boss’s son. But honestly, I don’t like most of them anyway. They’re all just rough, crude guys who don’t really understand me.
I’m Candy. I used to work on the ranch with George and Lennie before they moved on to the next job. I’m an old man now, and my hand ain’t as steady as it used to be. But I can still pull my weight around the ranch.
One thing you might notice about me is that I’m missing a hand. I lost it in a farm accident a while back. It’s made things tough, but I try not to let it get me down. I still work hard and do what I can to help out.
Hi there, I’m Slim. I’m one of the workers on the ranch where George and Lennie used to work. I’m a pretty quiet guy – I don’t say much, but I’m always watching and listening. I like to think of myself as a good judge of character.
I’m also a natural leader. The other guys on the ranch look up to me, and I try to set a good example for them. I’m not the type to boss people around, but I do like to make sure things are running smoothly. I guess you could say I’m the unofficial “second-in-command” around here.
My name is Crooks. I’m one of the workers on the ranch where George and Lennie used to work. I’m also the only black man on the ranch, which means I’m often left out of things. Most of the guys don’t talk to me, except when they have to.
I live in my own little room attached to the barn, where I keep my books and my few possessions. I like to read a lot – it’s one of the few things that keeps me sane out here.
I’m Carlson. I used to work on the ranch with George and Lennie. I’m a pretty straightforward guy – I like to get things done and I don’t beat around the bush. Some people find me a bit intimidating. But really, I’m not that scary.
I love hunting and guns, and I’m always talking about them. I don’t know why, but there’s just something about the thrill of the chase that really gets me going. But when I’m not out hunting, I’m usually working hard on the ranch. I take pride in keeping things clean and tidy, and I’m always the first one to sweep up the bunkhouse or scrub out the washbasins.
Hey, I’m The Boss. I run the ranch where George and Lennie used to work. I’m a pretty busy guy, always running around making sure everything is running smoothly. But even though I’m busy, I like to think I’m a pretty approachable guy.
I’m tall and thin and have a bit of a temper. But most of the time, I’m easy to get along with. I like to joke around and have a good time, even working. I’ve got a quick wit and a good sense of humour if I do say so myself.
I’m Curley, the son of the boss on a ranch in California during the Great Depression. I may be small, but don’t let my size fool you. I’m a tough guy and am not afraid to stand up to anyone who crosses me.
I’m always looking for a fight and will take on anyone who thinks they can take me down. It’s not just about proving myself it’s about asserting my dominance and ensuring everyone knows who’s in charge.
Howdy, I’m Whit. I used to work on the ranch with George and Lennie. I’m a pretty friendly guy, always up for a good time. I like to joke around and have fun with the other guys on the ranch.
One of my favourite things to do is play horseshoes. I’m pretty good at it, too – I’ve won a few tournaments in my day. I also like to go into town and catch a movie or two whenever possible. It’s nice to get away from the ranch and see something different for a change.
I’m Aunt Clara. Though I am never directly present in the story, my influence is felt through the character of Lennie, whom I used to take care of when he was younger. I was a kind and loving caregiver to Lennie, and I did my best to look out for him and protect him from the world’s harsh realities. Unfortunately, I passed away before the story’s events took place, but Lennie continues to carry my memory with him, often speaking to an imagined version of me for comfort and guidance.