Explain the Importance of the Outsider in the Novel ‘of Mice and Men’

Topics: Black people, White people, Great Depression Pages: 3 (1434 words) Published: January 3, 2012
Explain the importance of the outsider in the novel ‘Of Mice and Men’

An outsider is someone who is not accepted or is isolated from society. ‘Of Mice and Men’ is set in the 1930’s, where society considered many people as outsiders. During this period, many people were racist, sexist and prejudice towards disabled people. This is shown with several characters in the novel including Crooks, Curly’s wife and Candy who are all considered as outsiders in this novel, since they each had something that the society at that time were prejudice towards. In the 1930’s black people were highly discriminated against. This was mainly because many black people started to migrate form the south to the north in order to find employment. Many blacks stared to establish their own neighbourhoods, businesses and restaurants. All this activity caused competition to grow with the whites already living in these areas and many white people weren’t used to black people living in their community and this caused a lot of tension between whites and blacks. Furthermore, because of the Great Depression many people lost their jobs and had to find new jobs, and the blacks who had migrated up north, started to take available jobs. The white people living in the north became angry that the blacks were taking over their positions. The character Crooks from the novel, is an old black man with a crooked back. He is probably the most discriminated against since he is black and disabled, which means he can’t do as much work as the other. He works as a stable buck at the ranch, but although he has a job, we can assume that he gets the lowest wage on the ranch because he is black. This is shown in the novel since he doesn’t have a proper bed; instead he has ‘a long box filled with straw, on which blankets were flung.’ This is probably because of his low social status and therefore doesn’t get the same as the other workers on the farm, which includes a proper bed. Furthermore he is...
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