Of Mice and Men

Why does Steinbeck describe Lennie as in animalistic terms?

What animal is Lennies compared to?

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Lennie is defined by his hulking body and simple mind. The animal imagery supports the motif as Lennie being viewed as an animal by others. Steinbeck, for example, compares Lennie to a bear by saying "he walked heavily, dragging his feet a little, the way a bear drags his paws."