Of mice and men Comparison Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 08:06:56
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Of mice and men by John Steinbeck- Consider the character of crooks. How does he contribute to our understanding of the society in which he lives?

This essay will answer the question above. I will be looking at the character Crooks and the society and the racial issues at that time. I will also look into the American dream of the majority. John Steinbeck was born in 1902 in Salinas, California, and many of his novels are set in this part of America. Before his career as a writer began, Steinbeck worked as a construction labourer and a caretaker. His first novel Cup of Gold was published in 1929. Of Mice and Men was published in 1939. He died at the age of 66 in 1968.

In this paragraph, I will describe the character of Crooks and some of the difficulties faced by the racial minority. Crooks is a Black-American who stands out to the other ranch-men. He has a crooked back, where he has been kicked by a horse. He is known by many names, like the stable-buck negro or nigger. In the time where Crooks was living, Americans treated the Black-Americans very differently because they were niggers. The black people where not allowed in white areas, even though it wasnt a law, it was made this way, but there where laws of the segregation of the black and white people.

In the ranch, it was exactly the same, Crooks wasnt allowed in the other ranch peoples bunk house to play blackjack or rummy I aint wanted in the bunk-house and you aint wanted in my room (page 72). He just had to sleep in the barn by himself; he had no rights, except the choice of invitation of his room. He is only allowed to play horse shoes with the other ranch workers because he is so good at it. Although C1rooks is part of the lowest chain of respect, he knows himself as a proud aloof man; he doesnt care what the others say about him.

As Crooks is the only black man in the ranch, he has no rights at all, he didnt even have an identity, he was known as Crooks because his real name was not important to the ranch workers. Ku Klux Klan is the name of a number of past and present organisations in America that believed in white supremacy, anti-Semitism, racism and anti-Catholicism. These organisations promoted violence and terrorism, sometimes intimidation like burning a cross. The Klan was founded 1866, it mainly focused on intimidating people, but rapidly adapted to violent methods. This is what happens to crooks as he becomes intimidated and abused by other ranch workers. . A quick reaction set in as the Klans leader left, by the early 1870s. Crooks had a book in his room called the California Civil Code, this tells him what rights he has and what rights he doesnt have, he does this so he can avoid being lynched.

Every American worker has an American dream, the base of this is respect the people working in the ranch want to have their own ranch, people working for them and some nice crops. Crooks dream is to be treated equally, and to be respected. Candy wants to relax for his last few years and seeks the opportunity in George and Lennies dream which is to have a big vegetable patch and a rabbit-hutch and some chickens (page 15), Curleys wife wants to star in the movies, wear nice clothes and be rich. All their dreams are quite similar as they all want something for their own and also respect. What Crooks really wants is equality; he wants to be treated as another human being and not differently and to have friends. I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an he gets sick. (Page 77)

There are many characters that have disabilities in the story, these people are: Crooks, Candy, Lennie and Curleys wife, these people are affected in their own way. Crooks disability is none other than being black and his crooked back, he has to have his own room in the smelly, cramped barn, and he cannot go to the bunk house and play rummy with the white characters. Lennie has a mental disability which makes him different from the other characters because he still has a mind of a child; this affects him as the others underestimate him.

Curleys wife is the only female at the barn, she cannot do the things the boys can do, she is also controlled by Curley as she is a woman because men had more power than women in the past, this mean that she couldnt do what she wanted to do. Candy has the disadvantage of being old, the other guys think that he is useless, he stays behind and cleans up the bunk house, he has also lost a hand which makes that others think of him more useless. This shows us that he is not the only one which is different to the ranch workers.

Crooks contributes to our understanding of the society of which he lives by showing us how he lives in separation and inequality, he cannot do any of the things that the white people do, he doesnt even sleep in the same place as them as they think he stinks. The also refer to him as the nigger because he is not respected enough to be called by he real name.

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