How does Steinbeck present Crooks as the biggest victim on the ranch - discuss
Monday 24th October 2011
In the novel ‘Of Mice and Men’ Steinbeck presents Crooks, the black stable-buck as the biggest victim on the ranch because of his race. Crooks is also the most damaged person, emotionally and physically. He has a crooked back and has begun to mimic the cruel and violent behaviour of the other men on the ranch. The impact of his loneliness also makes him push people away, leaving him even more lonely and segregated.
The other men exclude Crooks because he is black. He is not allowed to go into the bunkhouse with all the white men because they are racist and follow the racist behaviour of segregation. It is clear that Steinbeck is critisising wider society through his description of Crooks. Crooks has his own room - ‘had his bunk in the harness room’ he lives alone and is no more important than the animals symbolised by the nearness to the animals. He is alone all the time and gets lonely but never admits it because he is too proud. Steinbeck show’s the irony of Candy saying - ‘must be nice to have a room all to your self’. When Lennie comes in to his room, Crooks has right to ask him to leave but instead acts as though he didn’t want Lennie to stay. He says – ‘come on in and set a while…long as you wont get out and leave me alone.’ The ellipsis’ show his hesitation after he admitted he wants the company he realizes and changed it around to say he wants to be alone. This is so Crooks can maintain his pride and his dignity. He his so lonely that he admits to Lennie – ‘just a guy talking to another guy doesn’t matter if he understands.’ This tells us Crooks is happy talking to Lennie even though Lennie does not understand most of the things Crooks is saying. It is the company and the talking to another human that matters to him. Steinbeck also adds that Crooks ‘reads a lot’. Steinbeck implies that even though Crooks is treated badly he could be the most...
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