Of Mice and Men Curley's Wife

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mice When John Steinbeck wrote of mice and men, he showed there was a lot of inequality during the 1930’s. This essay shall attempt to portray the inequality of women in Steinbeck’s novel.

George the main character of the story, first sets his eyes on Curley’s wife, his initial impression of her is that he has “never seen no piece of jail bait worse than her” (Steinbeck 2006 p36). In the novel Curley’s wife is a beautiful woman who constantly shows her beauty to the men on the ranch. She dresses inappropriately for a woman married to the boss’s son. “She had full, roughed lips and wide spaced eyes, her fingernails are red and her hair hangs in little rolled clusters, like sausages”. (p34 Steinbeck 2006). Curley’s wife always wanders around the ranch in search for someone to talk to. However, the ranch workers stay wary of her as they believe she will only give them trouble. Curley’s wife is isolated, self absorbed and a dreamer.

Curley doesn’t seem to have any respect for his wife at all, Candy tells George (Steinbeck p30) why Curley wears only one glove on his hand which is soaked in Vaseline so it is kept soft for his wife and George finds this disgusting. This is degrading to her as she is just there for his pleasure. She is just a wife who is a trophy to show off hence the saying ‘trophy wife’.

Dreams are heavily involved in this book. Like many characters in the book, Curley’s wife also has a dream. She dreams of being a film star. She appears to be trying to get the men into trouble but her dreams and frustrations show that she is lonely like the other people on the ranch. She hated her upbringing, so when a guy told her she had the potential to be a movie star and he would be in touch, finally she found a way out. However, being a young naive girl like she was, she fell for his story and she never heard or even saw the guy again. Instead of Hollywood and all its glam, she ended up marrying young and getting trapped on the ranch. Being the only...
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