Symbolism Of The Rabbit In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

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Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck (101-102) This passage comes from the end of the book, as part of the falling action leading into the resolution. After Lennie flees the ranch and hurries to the river side, he begins to hallucinate and the reader is allowed a glimpse inside of his mind. Steinbeck uses Lennie and George’s characterization and the symbolism of the rabbit in this scene to develop the theme that if one is truly loyal, they will stick with their friends even through challenges. Steinbeck uses Lennie and George's characterization in this passage to develop the theme that true loyalty perseveres through difficulties. During the passage, Lennie is scared of what might happen to him because he did another “bad thing”. …show more content…
The rabbit symbolizes Lennie’s doubts in himself and in others. The rabbit says, “‘he gonna leave you, ya crazy bastard. He gonna leave ya all alone’. . . Lennie put his hands over his ears. ‘He ain't, I tell ya he ain't. . .’”(102). When the rabbit tells Lennie that George will leave him, it's his own mind doubting him. Since Lennie has done something very bad, he's worried that George will abandon him, even though he is certain that George won't do so. Lennie stays loyal to George and denies the rabbit when it challenges George’s loyalty to Lennie. Lennie is truly loyal to George because of his actions when the rabbit, which symbolizes Lennie’s doubts, challenges his thinking. In addition, the rabbit also reveals Lennie’s fears of not being able to ever purchase his own land or be free of laboring when he tells Lennie, “[he] ain’t fit to lick the boots of no rabbit. [He’d] forget ‘em and let ‘em go hungry” (102). Lennie is always trying to meet George’s standards and work towards his freedom, and the doubt that he had that he wouldn't make it was always there, however in this passage, it's magnified to the point where he's hysterical, because he will never be worthy of having what he’s worked so hard to get. This reveals that Lennie himself had doubts about being able to ever fulfil his dream of tending the rabbits because of his