Decent Essays
“All cruelty springs from weakness,” said Lucius Annaeus Seneca. To me, this quote means that cruelty comes out from a person who is feeling weak. A big question people ask each other is “Why are people cruel to each other?” In John Steinbeck’s novel, Of Mice and Men, there are many incidents of cruelty. Cruelty appeared in the book when George yells at the mentally handicapped Lennie in the beginning of the book. This trend of cruelty continues throughout the book. Characters that were notably cruel in the book are Curley, Curley’s wife, and George. The three things that motivate people to be cruel in the book are: when people feel they are powerless, when a person wants a feeling of short term enjoyment from…show more content…
In Steinbeck’s novel, when individuals feel like someone doesn’t belong with them, their instinct is to treat that person cruelly. Crooks is a black stable buck that is discriminated against throughout the book because of his race. The other men believe that Crooks doesn’t belong because of his skin color, so they make him sleep with the horses. As a result of the torment they put him through, Crooks becomes a very bitter person. When he is talking to Lennie in the stable Crooks tells him, “They play cards in there, but I can’t play because I’m black. They say I stink.” (68) Their intentions are cruel. They treat Crooks like he is an animal. They feel uncomfortable around him, so they just ignore him completely. Crooks gets fed up with all of the negative treatment and his heart hardens. He feels like he is doesn’t fit in with the others on the farm. People have told Crooks that he is different throughout his life. He starts to believe

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them as he says, “If I say something, why it’s just a nigger sayin’ it”. (74) Crooks is not the only one who is discriminated against. For example, Curley’s wife is also discriminated against for being the only woman on the farm. In the 4th chapter, George says ,“Well ain’t she a looloo?” (51) and later on Candy says, “Maybe you just better go along an’ roll your hoop. We ain’t got nothing to say to you at all.”(79) Candy speaks for him and the other men when
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