Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Of Mice and Men Character Analysis Essay

Write a study of the character of Crooks, showing how Steinbeck uses him to tell us more about the other characters, and about the social and economical context of the book? This novel takes place in the 1930’s, it was a time of great depression, there was racial prejudice towards coloured people and there were very few job opportunities making it hard for people to have a good standard of living. Steinbeck wrote this novel to show us the daunting and alarming conditions for workers at this time; he chose each character to represent a different type of person. For example, one of the characters Crooks represents coloured people. When reading the story of mice and man we learn that Crooks is a kind and considerate man â€Å"You told me to warm up tar for the mule’s foot. I got it warm† this tells us that Crooks is generous man and is always willing to help. â€Å"I can do it if you want Mr Slim† when Crooks is speaking to Slim, he is deferential towards Slim and treats him like a superior by calling him Mr Slim. Although Crooks is a kind man he is not treated fairly and adequate all due racial prejudice â€Å"they let the nigger come in that night† first of all he is not even called by his proper name instead they use racial discrimination to point him out as he is called intimidating and awful words such as nigger and stable buck. He does not bunk with the others workers because the other workers are racist towards him and all due to his colour Crooks has to live in a stable buck where all the other animals live as he is not treated as an equal, â€Å"had his bunk in the harness-room; a little shed that leaned off the wall of the barn† this tells us that Crooks is treated inappropriately as he has to live in appalling conditions. We also get the impression that Crooks is isolated from the other workers making him feel lonely and deserted â€Å"Crooks said darkly: guys don’t come into a coloured man’s room very much† this tells us that Crooks has no true friends, this is not because he is a atrocious man, it is because of racial prejudice. Another reason why Crooks is lonely is that he segregates himself from the white workers as he’s the only black worker on the ranch. We learn that Crooks is well educated as he has books in his room â€Å"And he had books, too; a tattered dictionary and a maules copy of the California civil code for 1905.† This also tells us that although there is racial prejudice, Crooks knows his rights. We get the impression that Crooks is realistic and scornful and once dreams of owning his own farm â€Å"You’re nuts. Crooks was scornful. I see hundreds of men come by on the roads an’ on the ranches with their bindles on their back an’ that same damn thing on their heads.† This tells us that Crooks is like any ordinary man, he also has dreams to own a farm one day. â€Å"†¦If you†¦guys would want a hand to work for nothing – just his keep, why I’d come an’ lend a hand. This suggests that Crooks is desperate to get out of this ranch and he is hoping he will one day own that farm. â€Å"Well, jus’ forget it, said Crooks. ‘I didn’t mean it. Jus’ foolin’. I wouldn’t want to go no place like that† Crooks now realises there is no way he will ever get out of the ranch and own a farm so he tries to convince himself he never wanted a farm in the first place. â€Å"The door opened quietly and the stable buck put in his head; a lean negro head, lined with pain, the eye patient.† This tells us that Crooks has to be patient when living with the workers as he knows he is below the other workers because he is a coloured man and if Crooks was to make a slight move out of line there will be problems and fights will break out. When Crooks is talking to Candy, Crooks has to treat him well otherwise trouble will break out, â€Å"you can come in if you want† Although Crooks does not want Candy to come in he has to treat the other workers with respect â€Å"Candy seemed embarrassed. I do know. Course, if ya want me to† We get the impression that Candy feels embarrassed to go into a coloured mans room. â€Å"I was born right here in California. My old man had a chicken ranch, bout ten acres. The white kids come to play at our place† this tells us that in Crooks past life, there was nor always racial discrimination and he was once treated as an equal and as he got older there was more racial prejudice. Most of the other workers treat Crooks with no respect except for Slim who treats Crooks like an equal and in return Crooks treats him like a superior . â€Å"Huh? Oh’ Hello Crooks. What’s ‘a matter?† First of all, this tells us that Slims treats Crooks with respect by calling him by his proper name, we also get the impression that Slims shows consideration to Crooks by asking him â€Å"What’s ‘a matter?† Slim is the only worker that respects Crooks for who he actually is. â€Å"Well, he ain’t doin’ no harm. I give him one of my pups.† This shows that Slim is kind and friendly towards everyone and not just Crooks. The majority of the workers at the ranch treat Crooks will no respect and show no consideration â€Å"where the hell is that God damn nigger?† the first impression I get is that the workers do not treat Crooks reasonably, as they do not call him by his name, they call him racial words such as nigger and stable buck. When the workers get angry all anger is taken out on Crooks, this tells us that Crooks is not treated like a human being all due to racial prejudice. â€Å"Cause I’m black. They play cards in there, but I can’t play because I’m black. They say I stink.† This shows us that not only a small amount of workers are racist towards Crooks, the majority of the workers are. â€Å"Smitty says he woulda killed the nigger† this tells us that the workers not only hate him but they want to kill him, this gives us the impression on the amount of racial discrimination. Even Curley’s wife who is not a worker at the ranch is racist towards Crooks â€Å"Listen, Nigger, she said. You no what I can do to you if you open your trap† Crooks is treat badly by the majority of workers on the ranch due to racial discrimination Crooks has to treat them well â€Å"Yes ma’am† Although Crooks knows his rights, he has very few of them and he always has to show respect towards the other worker The other characters show no respect towards Crooks as they are racist, unfair and cruel towards him, the majority of the workers do not even call Crooks by his name and call him racial words such as ‘nigger’ â€Å"where the hell is that God damn nigger?† The only character who shows any sign of respect towards Crooks is Slim, Slim treats him like an equal â€Å"Hello Crooks. What’s ‘a matter?† Although in the time this novel was set there was racial discrimination Slim was not racist towards Crooks because he was a fair and respectable man. In return Crooks treats Slim like a superior â€Å"I can do it if you want, Mr Slim† We get the impression that Lennie does not even no who Crooks is as he has a very immature behaviour and a childish mind

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