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    The question was something like "How does loneliness affect characters emotions" and I've written this
    Another character in the Novella whose story has strong links to loneliness is Crooks. He is segregated from the rest of the characters due to his skin colour, an issue that was ever present in 1930's America. It is revealed early on in the novella that he has to live apart from the rest of the workers, in a separate bunk house due to his skin colour. We first get to see Crook's bunk in chapter 4, when Lennie visits him , and from the state of his room it is obvious he is lonely. He is said to have kept "a mauled copy of the California civil code" on one of his shelves. This is probably to keep him occupied when he is feeling alone; he can read it to understand what little rights he has, and what he should have, in the hope that one day he will be treated equally like the other men on the ranch. The fact that is is 'Mauled' suggested that he has read it so often it has become damaged. It is also animal imagery, as animals commonly maul their food, which implies that he has searched through it very roughly many times, and it may also refrer to how he is treated as an animal by the rest of the men on the ranch due to his skin colour, for example, not being allowed to socialize, or made to sleep in seperate rooms- yet even Candy's dog is allowed to stay with the men.
    As well as this, on Crook's shelf he keeps a 'Tattered Dictionary", which suggests that although he may not be well educated, he attempts to educate himself in the hopes that he will become smart enough to have a better job than what he has now, with more rights. It tells the reader that he is a strong willed man, who is at all time striveing to improve, although he has not been treated fairly. It also tells the reader that he has alot of spare time for him to read both books, due to the fact that he is never invited anywhere after working hours with the other ranch workers, and has nothing else he is able to do to pass time.
    Another point that emphasises Crooks's loneliness is how he treats Lennie when he is faced with a friendly persona, other than aggressive, insulting persona's he is usually faced with. Although during the scene, he does relentlessly invite Lennie into his bunk, he replies to his kind innocents with harsh taunts to intimidate and scare Lennie. He says to him "S'pose George went into town tonight and you never seen him no more", which obviously makes Lennie feel threatened and worried about his best friend. When Crooks see's this, his face 'Lightens with pleasure'. This implies that Crooks enjoys tormenting Lennie, suggesting he is a very low and unkind character. However, he could be taunting him because of how he sees Lennie as someone who is much less able than himself- Lennie doesn't understand anything about segregation or working in Crooks's eyes, and only cares about the Pups, where as Crooks is much more intelligent, yet he is treated so differently, and seen as in a lower position than Lennie. He also may be jealous of the strong friendship Lennie has with George, and doesn't understand why he can't have a friendship like that too, thus torments Lennie out of jealousy.
    Another character who is obviously incredibly lonely is Curleys wife. Being the only female on the ranch it is difficult for her to socialise with anyone else due to them sexualising her. She attempts to speak to some of the men, however she is just pushed further away, as they don't want to upset her husband, Curley, although he doesn't treat her well anyway. Therefore, she is segregated due to her gender. Due to her being so isolated, she attempts to gain attention of the men on the ranch by dressing in a overly sexualised way, and flirting with them, however it is clear that most of the men don't care for this. We can see this by how she dresses- she wears "Little bouquets of red ostrich feathers". The colour red is a vivid colour that automatically draws your attention to it. This signifies that Curleys wife wants to be noticed, and decides to wear the most eye catching colour in the hopes it will stand out amongst the dull colours that the other workers wear. However, the colour red also represents danger and fear, which is a foreboding technique used by Steinbeck to entail her ending, and how it damages the rest of the characters and their endings. As well as this, the fact that she wears Ostrich Feathers implies that, like an ostrich, she will never have the ability to fly. In this instance, it suggests that she will never be able to truly break free of her life in the Bunk House, and is grounded with Curley for the rest of her life- unable to achieve any of her dreams. Although it was most likely not intentional for Curleys wife to wear Ostrich feathers for this reason, Steinbeck has added this to foreshadow her ending. Due to her being presented as this, we are given a negative opinion of her, due to how she wants attention, though she has a husband. However, as the novella is in dramatic style, as more events unfold we being to realise her character is more dimensional than the sexualised, rude woman we see her as at the beginning, and our emotions towards her change as we realise how lonely and isolated she really is.
    An example of this is when she is consoling Lennie. She says to him " I get lonely. You can talk to people but I can't talk to nobody but Curley Else he gets mad". This directly tells us how Curley's Wife is really feeling, underneath the facade she holds of a strong, relentless woman. This suggests that she is so isolated, yet she feels sorry for herself because of the fact that she is unable to do anything to reverse it- because she is a woman. It tells us that she wants to be treated regularly, and spoken too like anyone else on the ranch, but she isn't able to because she knows Curley will get angry with her, and possibly hurt her. We know from other points in the novella that Curley is unafraid to lash out and become frustrated, taking his feeling out physically, so it is quite likely that he would do the same to Curley's Wife and the man she speaks too. For this reason, the other men are equally as afraid to speak to her in the chance that they will come under attack from Curley.
    She says this to Lennie because he is the only person on the ranch that treats her fairly and without any negativity like the other men do. Therefore, she feels safe around him and knows that he will not judge her. Additionally, she may recognise that Lennie has little understanding of what she is saying, yet still speaks to him out of desperation to let her feelings out. On the other hand, some readers may disagree, and think that she is only speaking to Lennie as a result of her understanding that Lennie thinks she is 'purty', and knows that she will be able to get the sexual attention she wants from him; to manipulate him into doing what she wants. Either way, it shows her desperation for attention, and wanting someone to speak to, consequently telling us she is a lonely character.
    A final character who shows prominant signs of loneliness in Of Mice And Men is Candy. Candy is the oldest man to work on the ranch , and suffers from a disability due to the fact he has only one arm. This means he is unable to work with the other men, which may contribute to his loneliness. However, like George and Lennie, Candy has a friend who helps him through his loneliness- his dog. He says to Carlson when contemplating killing the dog "“I’m so used to him,” he said softly. “I had him from a pup.”". This suggests that Candy doesn't want the dog killed because of how it may upset, or hurt the dog, but for the sake of his own sanity, as he knows that without his dog he will be compleatly isolated, without anyone to suppport him. He says this "Softly" to emphasise how he simply doesn't want to argue about it, or explain any further in front of the other men, he just wishes he was able to keep him. It may also be a sign of defeat- that he knows that the battle is over and there is no other way he is able to keep the dog, especially when argueing to Carlson, and as a result of this just says it to emphasise his sadness.
    In some ways, Candy is a parallel to his dog. Tantamount to the dog, Candy is old and no longer useful, and gets in the way of the rest of the workers. As well as this, both used to be incredibly useful- Candy speaks about his dog and says 'but he was the best damn sheep dog I ever seen.', and it is suggested at many points in the Novella that Candy used to be very strong, ,and a very good worker. However, nither of them are useful as they once were. I believe that once the dog dies, although Candy is incredibly sad, he is consold by the fact that he knows that his life will not end in the same way- although this may backfire, and he may be depressed as he knows there is no easy escape like the dog had out of his loneliness.
    The relationship of Candy and his Dog is also a relationship that forshadows the brutal ending of George and Lennie. Just Like Candy, George didn't want to lose Lennie, however knew that in time it would be for the best. As well as this, Candy says soon after his dogs death to George " I ought to of shot that dog myself, George. I shouldn’t ought to of let no stranger shoot my dog", which may have been one of the main influences to George, making him shoot Lennie himself rather than letting another worker shoot him.

    I've also got an intro & conclusion but the post is going to be too long anyway!
    • Thread Starter

    • Thread Starter

    Please can someone help me? I have my controlled assement tomorrow and need to know if I'm doing the right thing.
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