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Bearing in mind the cultural, social and historical context how does Steinbeck portray the black American in his novel 'Of Mic

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Bearing in mind the cultural, social and historical context how does Steinbeck portray the black American in his novel 'Of Mice and Men' In this essay I will discuss how Steinbeck portrays the black American in his novel 'Of Mice and Men'. They first published the novel in 1937, it is set during the great depression which was a time of high unemployment. It tells the story of Lennie and George, two migrant workers who travel around the country looking for places to work. In the 1930's America was a very racist place despite the fact that slavery had been abolished in 1865. The author of the book 'Steinbeck' used the character Crooks to expose racist attitudes and protest against the cruelty shown towards black people. Crooks is more permanent than the other and men on the ranch and has his own room off the stables with many more possessions than them. This room is made out to be a privilege and also because it means he is nearer to the horses but in fact it is really because the other men do not want him in the bunk house with them. ...read more.


When Crooks realizes that Lennie means no harm he invites him to " Come on in and set a while" Lennie begins to talk about George and his dream, it makes Crooks think of his childhood which he looks on as a kind of paradise. "The white kids come to play at our place, an' sometimes I went to play with them and some of them were pretty nice. My ol' man didn't like that. I never knew till long later why he didn't like that. But I know now". Crooks' didn't experience much racism in his childhood, making whats happening now even worse. Crooks is fascinated by the strength of the friendship of Lennie and George, especially how close they are. Crooks said, "Well, s'pose, jus' s'pose he don't come back. What'll you do then?" Crooks asks these questions because he does not have any friends, and wouldn't know how losing them unexpectedly would feel. He was curious about the friendship of Lennie and George, noticing that Lennie is retarded, he takes advantage of this situation to "torture" him mentally, to make him feel better and ease the pain of having other reject him "Crooks' face ...read more.


a hand to work for nothing just his keep, why I'd come and lend a hand" Crooks sees the dream as his escape from what he is living in, somewhere like his childhood where his colour wouldn't be an issue. Most of the men on the ranch don't like or socialize with Crooks but would not go out of their way to insult him. Curley's wife on the other hand is rude without excuse. " `Listen, Nigger' , she said. `You know what I can do to you if you open your trap'" She abuses her position and has no respect for him at all, she doesn't even refer to him by his name, looking down on him. It is attitudes like hers that have turned him into the bitter man he has become "Crooks had reduced himself to nothing. There was no personality, no ego-nothing to arouse either like or dislike" Steinbeck created the character Crooks to show what racism is like and how terrible it can be. He wanted people to know what kind of effect it had on someone and how they are just the same as others. ?? ?? ?? ?? Dave Mortimer ...read more.

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