What does this effect do for the tone of the book? Steinbeck foreshadowed the pivotal events based on Lennie’s psychological structure, innocence, brute strength and the pure brotherly love he holds for George. This therefore gives an overall depressing tone of the book with barely any positive events. Steinbeck first foreshadowed the pivotal events of the book through Lennie’s slight mental disability shown on page 8 where George refers to him as a “crazy bastard”.
It can be assumed that Lennie indeed has a disability and therefore impacts on the decisions he makes. An example of the effect Lennie’s disability is on page 13 where George loses his temper and recounts the events of their time in Weed where Lennie wanted to “feel that girl’s dress” and “jus’ wanted to pet it like a mouse” which leads to their escape during the night from the town. Another example suggesting Lennie’s slight disability is on page 17 where George talks to him as if he is talking to a child.
This proves that Steinbeck foreshadowed the pivotal events of the book through Lennie’s psychological structure due to the fact that Lennie is incapable of thinking for himself and therefore relies fully on George . This gives a sympathetic tone to the novel as the reader feels sympathetic towards Lennie’s good intentions and innocence. Lennie’s innocence plays a large role in the pivotal events of the book, as he isn’t quite aware of the consequences of the actions he takes. This is shown where George catches Lennie with a dead mouse on page 10.
Another example of Lennie’s innocence is where he is staring “hopelessly at his hands” and admitted that he forgot not to speak. This is an example of Lennie’s innocence due to the fact that he doesn’t understand that if he talks, George and he won’t be employed. Lennie’s innocence is shown again when he sleeps with the puppies, showing that despite all of the mistakes he has committed, he is still kind-hearted. Another example of Lennie’s innocence is his attempts to hide the body of the puppy he had killed; due to his almost inhuman strength.
This shows Lennie’s innocence because of his futile attempts to prevent disappointing or angering George. Lennie’s innocence foreshadows the pivotal events of the book because he doesn’t understand the effects of his actions or learns from his previous mistakes due to his disability. Such a quality like this, gives a depressing tone to the book as Lennie inevitably is pushed into dire situations with even worse consequences. Lennie’s brute strength is one of he key elements in how Steinbeck foreshadows pivotal events in the novel.
Firstly, George recounts the time where Aunt Clara gave Lennie pet mice in their younger days and George would “pinch their heads” and unfortunately die (page 11). Secondly, Lennie is sent to go pick up branches to fuel the fire (page 12). Thirdly, in the fight between Curley and Lennie, Curley’s hand is crushed by Lennie’s. Fourthly, the puppy dying from being petted too hard by Lennie and finally, Curley’s wife being killed through a broken spinal cord.
These events support the idea that Lennie’s brute strength is his undoing and therefore proves that Steinbeck uses Lennie’s strength to foreshadow key events due to the fact that he harms nearly everything he touches and in most cases, he unintentionally kills it. This therefore gives a dark tone to the novel, with the constant theme of death lingering at every key event. Finally, the most prevalent instrument to how Steinbeck foreshadows the pivotal events in the book lies in the pure, brotherly love Lennie holds for George due to his innocence and mental disability.
It is well known in the novel that George and Lennie have an extremely strong bond between each other and, due to this trait; it foreshadows most of the pivotal events in the book. For example, Lennie killing Curley’s wife for Lennie “had broken her neck”. This shows that Lennie doesn’t want George to get mad at him, to the point where “he shook her then, and he was angry with her” and therefore shows Lennie’s love towards George to the extent where he’d exercise extreme force. Another example of this is on page 98, where Lennie and George meet at the “deep green pool of the Salinas River”, where George told him to go if he got into trouble.
Lennie’s first dialogue is of George saying that he “di’n’t forget, you bet, God damn. Hide in the brush an wait for George”. This shows Lennie’s love for George as the place he decides to stay out is where George told him to go and immediately think of him. Finally, the most important example of Lennie’s love towards George is shown in Lennie’s death. As though it may show it, Lennie’s strong bond with George allows George to pull the trigger. Evidence of this is shown on page 103 where Lennie “cried in triumph” when talking about the partnership him and George.
Such a bond shows that George could get close enough to him to pull the trigger as Lennie feels so strongly about him, saying that “We got each each other, that’s what, that gives a hoot in hell about us. ” This shows that Lennie’s bond with George lasted till end. Events such as these make the overall tone extremely depressing, with there being not a shred of hope for Lennie and George together. From the above it is evident that Steinbeck foreshadowed the pivotal events based on Lennie’s psychological structure, innocence, brute strength and the pure brotherly love he holds for George.