Significance of Candy in of Mice and Men

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What is the significance of Candy in the Novel? The first impression we get of Candy is that he is a “tall, stoop shouldered old man”, who has lost his right hand. So right from the start Candy’s age and physical weakness were emphasized. This makes the reader feel sympathy towards him right from the start. Similarly his dog “is a drag-footed sheep dog, grey muzzle and with pale blind old eyes”. We could clearly see that they are alike. Which is particularly significant because later when Carlson suggests they should kill the dog because it’s getting “old” and “stinky” is he perhaps saying that Candy is getting old and stinky and he should leave. This portrays an important idea about life in the 1930s America that there is no place for the weak in a society where everyone is just about themselves. It also says that it particularly unusual for someone like Candy to get compensation for his work injury at the time of ‘the great depression’. The relationship Candy has with his dog is of particular importance. As it is very clear that when his dog got shot Candy enters a depression stage where he’s not talking and often “staring at the ceiling”. Similarly the life of the average rancher of 1930s America was depressing often travelling alone needing companionship. Moreover the relationship between Candy and his dog is similar to the relationship between George and Lennie, hence the dog getting killed foreshadows George killing Lennie at the end of the novel since Candy clearly says to George “I ought to of shot that dog myself. George” which is exactly what George does at the end he shoots his own dog (in the form of Lennie). Candy plays a major role in making George and Lennie’s dream possible by putting in the majority of the money. The main reason behind this is because he’s getting to ‘old’ for the job and is likely to get “canned” soon and if that happens he will

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