Big Guys are Dumb

The book I have chosen to read is Of Mice Of Men. In this book there are many cultural assumptions that at the time were seen as normal things to do, but now in our society are seen as very unfair and are not excepted.

One of the cultural assumptions is that people with learning difficulties are seen as outcasts in society they are also not given a fair go and treated like children. This is shown in the story through the character of Lennie, the protagonist, who has a learning difficulty. Lennie is a big guy who is never taken seriously by anyone and is never allowed to make his own decisions. This is shown especially through his so called best friend George. Lennie also has difficulty remembering things people tell him and George always yells at him when he does this.

Another example of how Lennie is treated unfairly is when he takes one of Slims (another guy working on the ranch) pups back to his room just to pat it and when George notices this he goes off at him and tells him to take it back straight away, when Lennie walks out the room the rest of the people in the room including Slim look at George in disgust and ask George why he hangs around with him.

The author challenges the cultural assumption of that people who have disabilities are less of a person than those who are considered normal. He does this by letting us get to know Lennie's character making him very likeable and he makes us feel sorry for him and how bad he is treated by the other characters.

John Steinbeck shows, through Lennie's character, that at the time men with disabilities were not treated with equal rights.

Personally, I think the way these men treat Lennie is just wrong, but I believe it just shows how uneducated the people of the 1930's in America were and how little knowledge of what it was like to have a disability.

Comment Stream

2 years ago
1

I think this blog clearly outlined cultural assumptions as you gave multiple examples of Lennie being treated poorly and people assume that he is just big dumb guy.

2 years ago
1

You used Lennies character to show who has a learning difficulty. "Lennie is a big guy who is never taken seriously by anyone and is never allowed to make his own decisions."

2 years ago
1

You have linked cultural assumptions to the text by saying at the end by the 1930's cultural assumptions are a lot different to what cultural assumptions there is now in out society.

2 years ago
1

You have identified the author well but could have a bit more :), you show how John Steinbeck challenges the idea of cultural assumptions that men in the 1930's with disabilities were not treated with equal rights but you could have explored more examples

2 years ago
1

Both the main character, and that they both get treated with the respect they deserve.