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Prejudice in Of Mice and Men

Novel by John Steinbeck

In the past and present there have been many divisions of people

for many reasons. Examples of this prejudice include discrimination

against women who wanted equal rights, including the right to vote. It

also includes discrimination against African Americans and believe it

or not, the Elderly. In John Steinbeck s Novel Of Mice and Men

there is prejudice on many levels including gender, race, and age.

Both in the real world and in Steinbeck s novel, women were

treated as if they are a minute part of society. Curley treats his wife

like she is simply an object. An example of this is when he tells her to

go inside their house very pugnaciously. This shows his lack of respect

for her. In his novel Steinbeck shows that throughout history women

have been discriminated against. Curley s wife is an example of this

prejudice.

Many people throughout the years have discriminated against

individuals because of their race. In Of Mice and Men , Crooks

represents the prejudice against African Americans. In one part of the

book Crooks is Given Hell because George and Lennie were late to

work. Then Candy said Sure. Ya see the stable buck s a nigger.

Crooks is Given Hell for the simple fact that he is black.

He is also called a nigger which is both disrespectful and degrading

to African Americans. Crooks speaks much about being alone and then

he remarks that the only thing to keep him company when it becomes

dark are books. Books ain t no good. A guy needs somebody to

be near him. This statement represents Crook s deep loneliness

because the difference in his skin color from the others.

One Last example of prejudice in this novel are the attitudes of

all the people on the ranch towards Candy. Candy represents the

elderly people in the world. Candy can often be compared to his dog

who is at the end of his life. Carlson wanted to kill the dog, he spoke

about it by saying ain t nothing left for him. Can t eat, can t see,

can t even walk without hurtin . In truth this is sort of how the people

on the ranch felt about Candy because he is so old and he is an

amputee.

In John Steinbeck s novel Of Mice and Men , there is

prejudice on many levels, in gender, race and age. Each character

represents a different aspect of prejudice against a different group.


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