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In the book Of Mice and Men, most of the characters were named in correspondence with their physical appearance. Curley, a key secondary character, is no exception seeing as he is described as being a "thin young man with a brown face, with brown eyes and a head of tightly curled hair." On the surface Curley is a very confrontational, mean-spirited, intimidating and an aggressive young man who is very cruel to all those around him for no apparent reason. However, after thorough analysis we see that the source of his cruelty originates from two main personal insecurities that cause him to lash out. The first major issue Curley struggles with is his size. He is short and therefore referred to as “scrappy.” This really bothers him and makes him feel inferior and hence his need to prove his masculinity. To compensate for his small stature and to show his strength he is continually picking fights with larger men or with people who are smaller and weaker then himself. “Well . . . tell you what. Curley's like a lot of little guys. He hates big guys. He's alla time picking scraps with big guys. Kind of like he's mad at 'em because he ain't a big guy. You seen little guys like that, ain't you? Always scrappy? (2.91)” In other words, by putting other people down, or showing how he can take on someone twice his size, it makes him feel good about himself. Another reason he likes to pick on bigger men is because he has a good system down that as Candy explains, "S'pose Curley jumps a big guy an' licks him. Ever'body says what a game guy Curley is. And s'pose he does the same thing and gets licked. Then ever'body says the big guy oughtta pick on somebody his own size, and maybe they gang up on the big guy. Never did seem right to me. Seem like Curley ain't givin' nobody a chance" (2.93). So, either way, given the situation he feels like he comes out wining no matter what, which gives him a sense of power – something he craves. Another way Curley feels like he has to prove his

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