The Theater: Brute Strength

OF MICE AND MEN

by JOHN STEINBECK

"Tell me again about the rabbits, George." The plea is from John Steinbeck's naturalistic opus Of Mice and Men. The pleader is Lennie, a ruined hulk who grasps ideas with his hands instead of his brain. Looming about the California farm land, Lennie is barely held in tow by his keeper George. Together, the two migratory workers enjoy a classic symbiosis, the blending of brute strength and animal cunning.

When this play was first produced in the '30s, the Natural Man enjoyed something of a vogue. Eugene O'Neill's Hairy...

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