Violence Against Women In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

774 Words 4 Pages
In society, there always seems to be violence, in particular, violence against women. Women are very often murdered, far more than is discussed. We never hear about most of these cases, simply because there are so many of them. 25% of women have experienced some sort of domestic violence, and 20% have faced sexual violence, making having faced violence almost normal. The notion that violence is something normal is very dangerous, as it is not only harmful to survivors of violence, but it also makes it more likely that more people will be victims of violence as perpetrators can get away with it more easily. Though violence against women is not talked about enough, our flaws as a society are reflected in literature. An example of an instance in which violence against women appears in literature is in John Steinbeck’s novella Of Mice and Men. Said instance is the death of “Curley’s Wife”. She is blamed for her own death, and she is clearly not valued as a whole person, no one reacts emotionally to her death. Victim blaming leads to the normalization of violence and the devaluing of women.
The fact that victims are often blamed
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Her own husband reacts with only rage, which may speak to how toxic masculinity has affected him, or to how unimportant to him his wife is. Her death and subsequently Lennie’s were viewed as events that would inevitably occur, and they are under-reacted to. The way that her death is ignored, even as she is the only woman around, proves how misogynistic the ranch community really was. Consequently, the normalization of violence against women in our society exposes our misogyny as it proves that we do not value women as much. Their suffering is ignored. Most of the ranch hands view Curley’s wife as a nuisance. Some, including Candy, even think “good riddance” which obviously demonstrates how much Curley’s wife is blamed and how little she is

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