The book might have ended as Slim and George walked toward the highway. Instead, Steinbeck added a coda with Carlson saying, "What the hell ya suppose is eating' them two guys." Why do you think this was added?
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This was added to illustrate the separation between George and Slim from the other men. George and Slim understood the emotions at play when having to kill Lennie. The other men did not talk about emotions or acknowledge that two men travelling together meant something. They did not appreciate Lennie on a personal level rather they just felt he was “cuckoo.”