Compare how women are presented in ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘An Inspector Calls’.
‘What freedom men and women could have, were they not constantly tricked and trapped and enslaved and tortured by their sexuality’ – John Steinbeck In ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘An Inspector Calls’ both authors indirectly show their beliefs and opinions towards women and the way they are treated by society. In the time both stories were set- 1912 and 1930’s- women were generally seen as a lesser class than men and due to their sexuality, they were not treated fairly. Steinbeck and Priestley show this at many points in their stories. Both Eva Smith and Curley’s wife are victims of their class as Eva is victimised by each member of the Birling Family, who each make her life harder and is ultimately partially responsible for her death. Inspector Goole also makes it clear to the reader and the Birling family that Eva is the victim when he says ‘A pretty lively sort of girl that never did anybody any harm.’ The character of Eva also conveys how hard life was for young women in 1912 who had no family and was unemployed which meant she had no income to provide for herself. Eva was also a lonely character, much like Steinbeck’s character ‘Curley’s wife’ who was longing for not only male attention, but any attention. Curley’s wife is also a victim of her class as she has little, if any, power over anyone else on the ranch and is practically at the bottom of the hierarchy, despite being the daughter-in-law of the ranch owner. This makes the reader sympathise with Eva Smith and Curley’s Wife. Furthermore, in both stories the audience is invited to dwell on Eva’s vulnerability at the hands of others caused by their gender and class. However, we get more of an insight into the lives of victimised women in ‘OMAM’ through the character of Curley’s wife; whereas, in ‘AIC’, Eva Smith’s life is told through other characters. Physical appearance is another similarity between Curley’s wife and Eva...
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