Of Mice and Men - Crooks and Curley's Wife

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Throughout the 1920’s, black people and women in America have been forced to live through poor social conditions. Until recent years, these people have been excluded from society and were considered outcasts in a typical community. John Steinbeck shows the reader this in his novella, “Of Mice and Men.” Steinbeck uses the characters of Crooks and Curley’s wife to display that although one character is a black male and the other, a white woman, they still have similar traits. These factors like discrimination, loneliness and shattered dreams make Crooks and Curley’s wife parallel. Crooks and Curley’s wife suffer from discrimination around the ranch. Steinbeck expresses discrimination, or prejudice, very simply by refusing to give Curley's wife a name. She is displayed as only a mere item of Curley’s. Curley’s wife is disliked by ranch hands as they only see and think “she’s a rat trap if I ever seen one” and refuse to talk to her. In a similar fashion to Curley’s wife, Crooks is discriminated and treated unfairly in comparison to the other ranch hands. It is simply evident as they refer to Crooks as a “nigger”. This is offensive but he is at the bottom of the hierarchy so evidently “he don’t give a damn about that”. His room is situated away from the others as they “don’t want nothing to do with him.” Crooks is alike Curley’s wife as they are both discriminated and excluded from society. Prejudice towards Crooks and Curley’s wife causes them to be very lonely. Due to the fact that the ranch hands find Curley’s wife troublesome, it means that “she can’t talk to nobody” and this causes her to be lonesome. Steinbeck illustrates Curley’s wife in a way that makes her seem flirtatious and “purty” and this is all the men see in her, though she is simply just trying to make conversation. Loneliness is also seen in Curley’s wife as she “don’t even like Curley who ain’t a nice fella” and therefore has nobody to communicate with, “even [her] own husband”. Crooks, alike...
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