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Of Mice and Men

            In the novel Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck uses stereotypes and discrimination to convey a message of how the characters feel. A lot of the stereotypes and clichés are just common beliefs of the times, but a few are situational. To quote a quite distinguished reader, "Characters are trapped'- either by what others think of them, or by their situation." A lot of the character's feelings about themselves and what others think of them will lead to loneliness. Crooks is a character who is mistreated in many ways because he is black. Crooks is the stable buck of the barn. It's not certain whether Crooks is his name, or his nickname, but we know he got kicked in the back by a horse and had a crooked back ever since. Nevertheless he gets yelled at by the boss every time something's wrong. " The boss gives him hell when he's mad. But the stable buck don't give a damn about that, " says Candy, p.32. Crooks also isn't allowed in the bunk houses because people say he stinks. Crooks talks with Lennie in the book, "Crooks laughed again. A guy can talk to you an' be sure you won't go blabbin'." p.78. This most likely makes Crooks feel not wanted at all, Which roots to loneliness. Lennie is not so much stereotyped, but rather trapped because of his size. Because Lennie is so big, Curley thinks he has to prove something by beating up Lennie. Lennie gets on Curley's bad side when he didn't do anything wrong. Lennie is then forced to fight. " I don't want no trouble, he said plaintively. Don't let him sock me, George. " p.32. This is not an everyday discrimination like racism. It's one of those circumstantial incidents that was described in quote in the introduction. This is an excellent example of how John Steinbeck uses extraordinary circumstances to create appeal and realism to the reader. Curley's wife is probably the most loathed on the ranch. Because of the way she looks and acts, people think she is easy, or a "tart".

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