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Explore the presentation of Curley's wife in "Of Mice and Men".

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Introduction

Of Mice and Men was written in 1937 by John Steinbeck. It was set whilst we was in the great depression. Referring to how during the great depression women were oppressed and treated less equally to men. Steinbeck may have portrayed women in this light to allow the reader to recognize the inferior role of women at that time. The lack of name demotes Curley's wife to insignificant status. Her lack of identity implied she is not woman but rather a possession of her husband. This character develops, we find that she is not in fact the unimportant, nameless character we first perceive her as, but rather she is a relatively complex and interesting character. Steinbeck presents her in many ways throughout the story changing the reader opinion of her all the time. In section 2, Curley?s Wife is first presented to us through the dialogue of ranch-hand Candy, when he describes her to George, the reader begin to create an image in our head of what Curley?s wife looks like. Curley?s wife has no respect from the other men at the ranch. Candy uses expressions such as ?she got the eye? and goes on to describe her as looking at other men, before eventually calling her a ?tart?. Through Candy?s words, we develop an initial perception of Curley?s Wife as flirtatious ?tramp? and even immoral. The word ?tart? suggests she presents herself in a flamboyant manner, which portrays her desperation to be noticed. Steinbeck enables the reader to see Curley?s Wife through Candy?s eyes on their first encounter with her. ...read more.

Middle

When she is the barn the candy crooks and Lonnie curley?s wife feels as she is more powerful than them this make her feels better as she says to crooks ?well, you keep your place then nigger. I could get you strung up on a tree so easy it isn?t even funny.? But she only has the power because she is Curley?s wife and Curley is the bosses son but the reason why she acts like this is because she has no happiness as she has no one to talk to this is the only way to make her feel better about herself. She has a very short temper and can lose it very quickly Steinbeck make her comeback more intense ?The girl flared up? which means that she got angry quickly. ?She turned to him in scorn? suggesting she turned to candy in an angry manner. Steinbeck makes Curley?s wife ask a rhetorical question ?whatta, ya think I am a kid? even though she seem young she making herself look old so she can fell bigger than other people. When she is in the barn with Lennie and they are alone she can act to show her flirtatious side Steinbeck uses an oxymoron to show this ?she made a small grand gesture with her arm and hand to show that she could act? this supports Candy?s statement about her being a tart and that she does not have just one personality. ...read more.

Conclusion

But just let two of the guys get together an? you won?t talk? which implies that there not scared of her but am of Curley. The reader then begins to feel sympathy for her character when it is discovered she is in fact very lonely. When she is in the barn with Lennie we get to see her kind side and that she is just an ordinary girl wanted someone to talk to ?She knelt in the hay beside him? which is a kind action and tries to get the sympathy vote from Lennie and listen to Lennie like she cares and that she still has emotion ?Why, he?s dead, she cried? ?Don?t you worry none.? Curley?s is being kind and reassuring Lennie trying to make friends so she can actually talk from her personality rather than her looks. She also enjoys the attention being given back to her ?feel right here? getting attention from Lennie. At the start of the novel Curley?s wife seem like an unimportant character but as we read through it we as reader find out she is one of the main characters. Curley and his wife are not in love it just a marriage to get spite from their mother or to make other men jealous we find out that Curley?s wife does not like him and would rather be in her movie star dream. Curley?s reaction to her death at the end of the novel also stresses the fact that women were property. He was upset with her death, not because he loved her, but because it was a loss to his social status. ...read more.

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