Of Mice and Men

7 July 2016

In the novella ‘of mice and men’ by John Steinbeck written in 1973, seats in the era of human history known as the Great depression in the 1930’s when Black Americans are marginalized by the white which make them have difficulties in getting jobs. Crooks, the only black American in the group is being disregarded because of his skin color “Crooks, the negro stable buck, had his bunk in the harness room; a little shed little that leaned off the wall of the barn” (Steinbeck, 67). In this novel, Crooks words to Lennie about loneliness reinforces two themes within the novel which is discrimination and racism.

There is a lot of racial prejudice shown in Of Mice and Men towards Crooks, “the black and crippled stable buck” (Steinbeck, 66-67). The author, John Steinbeck illustrates racism by the punitive words of Curley’s wife when she states, “Listen Nigger, she said. You know what I can do to you if you open your trap? Crooks stared hopelessly at her, and then he sat down on his bunk and drew to himself. She closed on him. You know what I could do? Crooks seemed to grow smaller, and he pressed himself against the wall. Yes, ma’am.

Of Mice and Men Essay Example

Well, you keep your place then, Nigger. I could get you strung up on a tree so easy it ain’t even funny. ”(Steinbeck 80-81) The loneliest person on the ranch is Crooks, he suffers from extreme loneliness because of his race, black. He lives alone because none of the men want to make friends with him. He does not take part in any of the social activities in the ranch and he is left out completely. In order to give pictures to Lennie of how unfortunate and miserable his life has been, he gives Lennie a little heartfelt speech. “S’pose you didn’t have nobody.

S’pose you couldn’t go into the bunk house and play rummy ’cause you was black. How’d you like that? S’pose you had to sit out here an’ read books. Sure you could play horseshoes till it got dark, but then you got to read books. Books ain’t no good. A guy needs somebody-to be near him. A guy goes nuts if he ain’t got nobody. Don’t make no difference who the guy is, long’s he’s with you. I tell ya, I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an’ he gets sick” (Steinbeck, 72) . This shows that he really is desperate and he needs someone to be his friend.

He is at a point where he is emotionally torture and really sick of it . He desperately needs someone to talk to and also for company. When Lennie comes over into his room, he doesn’t even care if Lennie listens to him he just eventually talks about his feelings. In a conclusion, Crooks contributes to the central theme of racism and discrimination in this short novella Of Mice and Men. Steinbeck illustrates the loneliness of ranch life in the 1930 and show how Black American are driven to try and fight for friendship in order to escape from loneliness.

“Cause I’m black. They play cards in there, but I can’t play because I’m black. They say I stink. Well, I tell you, you all of you stink to me” (Steinbeck, 68) Crooks wants Lennie to notice that the separation from the other men because of his race is painful. He also wants Lennie to know that people treat him unfairly just because of his skin color is black. Crooks words on loneliness eventually reinforces two themes within the novel, discrimination and racism.

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