The American Dream Free Essay
“They call it the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it”- George Carlin. John Steinbeck’s novels are considered social novels because he wrote about the economic problems of labor. In his book Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck describes the lives of two migrant workers, who work in Salinas, California.
Like any other migrant workers George and Lennie both believe in the American Dream. John Steinbeck is trying to point out the difficult it takes to achieve the American Dream. The main point that Steinbeck is making is that it impossible to achieve the American Dream in this world, even though people strive for it every day. The people, who come here to work usually, have no one left in their lives to care about them. So they work to try and keep themselves alive.
“Guys like us that work on ranches are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no Family they don’t belong no place. They come to a ranch an’ work up stake, and first thing you know they’re pound in their tail on some other ranch. They ain’t got nothing to look forward to” (pg .13). There are many people from around the world who come to America as migrant workers to try and seize the American Dream but measurably fail.
The Main reason people come here is to work and earn money, but they end up gambling it all away. “I seen guys nearly crazy with loneliness for land but ever’ time a w**** house or a black jack game took what it takes” (pg .76). John Steinbeck shows how people who are tempted by other things can throw away the chance to live the American Dream in an instant. In this hard and difficult time period (1930’s) everybody wants just a small amount of wealth to sustain themselves, to keep moving forward in life. “Sure they all want it; everybody wants it a little bit of land not much.
Ju’s somethin’ that was his. Somethin he could live on and there couldn’t nobody throw himself off it”. (pg 76) George and Lennie, like any other migrant workers in America want some land to live a better lifestyle. They want some land where no one could kick them out, a place where they can stay, and call their home. Not having to run from place to place just to get jobs so they sustain themselves, always having to stay with a bunch of people, who you don’t even know.
Traveling during this time was incredibly difficult, especially when you barley had enough money to support yourself. As stated on (pg. 5) “You remember settin’ in that gutter on Howard street and watchin’ that blackboard” In the 1930’s which was George and Lennie’s time period, people, wanted some land where they could plant their own crops, harvest their own crops, sell their own crops and eat their own crops. Of course people also wanted some animals. Cows to milk, chickens to lay eggs and some pigs to eat.
This was the American Dream for these people at this time. Today people don’t want what George and Lennie wanted back in the 1930’s, which was land, today people want big houses, luxury cars, top of the line clothing and a lot of money. They want to live in big houses, drive expensive cars while wearing some seven hundred dollar suit and have cash in their pockets. Back then owning a piece of land to grow your own crops, and having animals to support yourself was the American Dream as stated (pg.87) ” George, how long’s it gonna be till we get that little place an live on the fatta the lan- an rabbits” It is impossible to achieve the American Dream in this world, even though people strive for it every day. Many people come to America thinking that they will without a doubt live the American Dream.
It doesn’t matter if its land, money, a big house, nice cars or even the best paying job in the world that you want no matter how many opportunities you get, you will never obtain the American Dream. No one in this world can have a perfect life where they can have everything they want. There will always be that one obstacle in life that you can’t overcome. For George and Lennie it was Lennie’s lack of intelligence that caused them the American Dream. In the end Lennie paid the price of the American Dream, he paid with his very own life.