Crooks' Importance In Of Mice And Men

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Crooks’ importance in “Of Mice and Men”

        In “Of Mice and Men” Crooks is a black stable back segregated from the rest of the men on the ranch because of the fact that he is black. Crooks’ name suggests that there is something physically wrong with him. His physical disability is one of the many ways that he suffers on the ranch. We see Crooks mostly in chapter four. He is not shown much in the first three paragraphs and this indicates his position in society as very low because he is not noticed, and therefore is not important.

        At the begin of chapter four we see Crooks in a room of his own from this we see he is separated from all the other men. His room is simple and small to suit his needs:

         “Crooks’ bunk was a long box filled with hay”

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The fact that his room is so basic shows that he is lower than rest of the men on the ranch. Although that he is seen as less of a person, he looks after his room which shows he is “a proud, aloof man.”

        Although he is separated from the other men, he still has many personal possessions. Like the other men on the ranch his possessions say a lot about him. In his room he has “rubber boots”, “a big alarm clock”, and “a shot gun” which shows that although he is a cripple he is very active and ...

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The Quality of Written Communication is fine. The use of speech marks, full stops and commas convey accurately the intention of the candidate, though a few more adventurous punctuation points could improve the answer by showing to the examiner that the candidate has the ability to write with confidence, but other than that this is a very well-written piece.

The Level of Analysis of the importance of Crooks' character gets off the a flying start, instantly diving into the deep end of the answer and explaining that Crooks' is used as a method of conveying the harshly unjust and uncivilised treatment of blacks in America during The Great Depression. The candidate would've strengthened this Point still by mentioning how, when work was so sparse and very little money was to be found, there was an even greater resentment to black people, as white people felt to be unfairly treated when jobs they could be doing were given to black men. Another Point the candidate makes is how the farm is a symbol of a hierarchy representative of society at the time, also noting the Crooks' involvement at the bottom "shows that he is lower than rest of the men on the ranch". The best thing about this essay is is how the candidate hones in on Chapter 4 (whilst very diligently noting how Steinbeck refers to him last in the character descriptions, showing his low importance) where we see inside Crooks' room. We get a feel for his character as what he stands for. Perhaps a more explicit comment could be made about the fact that even though Crooks' obsessively reads Law books and knows his Human Rights, his status and position in society shows that Laws were often overturned in favour of individual authority groups (employers, like The Boss) regardless of the Law, meaning his discrimination could continue. There is a nice concluding paragraph here as well, noting how Crooks, after finally letting white men into his tiny room and believing for a brief moment he could receive his dream, is left at the end of the Chapter again rubbing liniment on his back, showing that even after the glimmer of hope Lennie's dream presented him, he is still "a busted-back nigger".

This question proposes to the candidates a task of analysis of the importance of Crooks in John Steinbeck's novel 'Of Mice And Men'. Characters in novels are quite often stereotyped and quite often representative of all people sharing the qualities of that individual character e.g. Crooks is representative of all black people in America at the time. The candidates has done well to answer this question with a demonstration of sound understanding of how Steinbeck reveals the importance of Crooks not just as an element of the novel, but also as a catalyst for other themes resonant in the novel e.g. - dreams.