Of Mice And Men Curley's Wife Loneliness Analysis

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Loneliness is not necessarily always a direct result of isolation, because one can feel lonely in an entire group of people, particularly occurring when one is not included. Seclusion due to social differences was a major issue during the 1930’s, which is the time period during which John Steinbeck’s story Of Mice and Men is set. Being secluded from others because one does not fit in with the majority group most often leads to loneliness, especially when they are alone in their differences. Steinbeck uses the three characters Candy, Crooks, and Curley’s Wife to illustrate loneliness caused by differences of age, race, and gender. Candy is an old man, functioning with only a single hand, lacking the equal physical abilities of the other men …show more content…
In fact, she receives such little respect that she is not at all addressed by her name. Steinbeck does not provide her with a name because all the reader needs to know is that she is Curley’s Wife, and he does this because, at the time, a woman’s respective “place” in society only regarded her duty as a wife (or mother). Society sets certain standards for wives, and the fact that Curley’s Wife goes around talking to the other men on the ranch reveals that she does not follow the rules of what would be considered a “good wife” and so the men avoid her and belittle her. The time George first meets Curley’s Wife, she is looking for Curley, and just from seeing her talking to other men he says, “‘Jesus, what a tramp,’...’So that’s what Curley picks for a wife’” simply by him saying this it goes to show the complete and utter lack of respect Curley’s Wife receives on the ranch (32). However, the men also try to avoid associating with her at all costs because they are afraid of Curley (since he is a fighter). To Curley, his wife is more of a possession than a lover, and the mere fact that Curley becomes enraged rather than mournful when his wife is killed supports the idea that he somewhat objectifies her: he reacts as though his wife is a toy that someone has just taken from him. The lack of affection Curley provides his wife with only drives her, in a sense, to “act out” more. As all of the other characters know, Curley does not approve of his wife talking to other men, and Candy even says to Curley’s Wife, “‘...maybe you better jus’ scatter along now, ‘cause Curley maybe ain’t gonna like his wife out in the barn with us ‘bindle stiffs’’” as well as later on saying, “‘You better go home now,’...’If you go right now, we won’t tell Curley you was here’” (81). When it all comes down to it, though, looking elsewhere for attention feels to be the only way

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