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Racial Discrimination In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

Decent Essays
Discrimination plays a big role in Of Mice and Men, since it takes place during the Great Depression. Racial segregation, gender rights, and handicap vulnerability are all problems in Of Mice and Men that reflect the society at the time. Curley’s wife, Crooks, and Candy are discriminated against on the ranch just like they would be in society. Even though Crooks, a black stable hand, has been around the Ranch longer than most people and he is still probably one of the most lonely. This lack of contact with other people has made him severely bitter especially when people enter his personal space. He creates his personal space with books because it helps him cope with the loneliness. So when Lennie tries to befriend him he freaks out by exclaiming, “You got no right to come in to my room. This here’s my room. Nobody got any right in her but me.”(68) In addition to Crooks being lonely he is also segregated from all the other workers. He lives in the barn with the animals instead of the bunkhouse with the others. It’s also very hard for Crooks to associate with the others, because during the time period blacks are seen as a lower class of people. When Crooks states, “Guys don’t come in to a colored man’s room very much.”(75) It shows how little contact he has with the others because of how segregated he is. This segregation mirrors the Jim Crow laws that were active during this period. Crooks’s treatment on the ranch represents the racial discrimination against blacks in
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