Malala Yousafzai once said,” There should be no discrimination against languages people speak, skin color, or religion”. This quote proves that judging people doesn’t define who they are it defines who you are. In the novel Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck tells the story of two men who travel together during the Great Depression. Steinbeck explores the major theme of the loss of hope that can be caused by discrimination. Steinbeck used the characters of Crooks and Lennie to show that discrimination leaves people without power or hope.
Lennie, a man of tremendous size, has the mind of a young child. Doesn’t have any family only George. Lennie and George are eating in the forest and Lennie keep telling George if they have ketchup for the beans their eating. George exploded,” Whatever we ain’t got, that’s what you want. God almighty, if I was alone I could live so easy. I could go get a job an’ work, and no trouble.” ‘“[…] An whatta I got,” George went furiously. “I got you! You can’t keep a job and lose me ever’ job I get.[…]” (Steinbeck,11). This quote explains that if Lennie wasn’t around then George would be living life. This shows that George really doesn’t like taking care of Lennie, But really doesn’t have a choice. This relates to the theme because George likes to make Lennie feel bad about himself. Lennie and George finally made it to the bunkhouses.
Their new boss was asking them questions about how they knew each other and where they use to work. After Lennie and George arrived to the bunkhouse the boss kept on asking why isn’t Lennie talking. George said they are cousins and when they were small Lennie go kicked in the head by a horse and he isn’t the brightest. “ You said I was your cousin George” “ Well, that was a lie. An’ I be damn glad it was. If I was a relative of yours I’d shoot myself” (Steinbeck,24). This quote means that George feels superior then Lennie. It explains that George really doesn’t respect Lennie nor Lennie’s family. This relates to the theme because George knows that Lennie doesn’t know how to mentally defend himself. To wrap up, Lennie falls in the category for being apart from discrimination because the characters throughout the story really don’t treat Lennie like a grown adult and don’t take him seriously.
Crooks a crippled black man that likes to keep his distance and demands that people keep theirs. Crooks, Lennie, and Candy were all talking to each other and Crooks finally feel like he’s not being treated differently and he finally has confidence, but that all changed when Curley’s Wife shows up. Curley’s Wife turned to Crooks inverse “Listen, nigger,” she said. “You know what I can do to you if you open your trap” (Steinbeck,80). This quote shows how not only do they treat Crooks differently but, they threaten to take his life. This quote relates to discrimination because it shows that they think Crooks’s life is a joke. After Curley’s Wife threatens Crooks. Crooks seemed to grow smaller, and he pressed himself against the wall. Crooks avoided the whole subject, “Maybe you guys better go,” he said. “I ain’t sure I want you in here no more. A colored man got to have some rights’ seven if he doesn’t like, em (Steinbeck). This quote, it shows how Crooks went from having Confidence feeling like a normal person to feeling like he’s a nobody again. This means just by one person telling Crooks something he loses all his power as a human. All in all, Crooks is a big part of discrimination because they treat him differently because of his skin tone which relates back to the theme.
To End, this character Lennie and Crooks were being discriminated against because of their looks or mental disabilities. This relates and connects to the theme because they both had hope and dreams but, were sadly taken away from them.
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