The Relationship Between Crooks In John Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men

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In the novella Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, the word nigger is used to develop the complex personality of Crooks. The story is centered around two migrant farmers; Lennie, who has a mental disability, and George, who watches over and protects Lennie from getting into any trouble. Crooks is a black man who works on the same ranch as these two men. Crooks is constantly discriminated against by his fellow workers because of his darker skin color. This unjust division has oppressed Crooks’ emotions, bringing forth a lack of confidence and strength within him. One afternoon, while most of the men have gone out into town, Lennie, while searching for his puppy, stumbles upon Crooks’ room, which has been isolated from the bunkhouse at which all the white men sleep. …show more content…

After much failed persisting, Crooks begins to explain why he isn’t wanted or accepted at the ranch by saying “‘If I say something, why it’s just a nigger sayin’ it?” [...] “This is a nigger talkin’ [...] So it don’t mean nothing, see?’” (Steinbeck 71). By saying this, Crooks reveals his sensitivity towards this harsh label. When the word nigger is used by those on the ranch to describe Crooks, he doesn’t take it lightly. Instead, he goes against his will by distancing himself far away from others, leaving both himself and his deep emotions in solitude. If Crooks continues to bottle up his emotions, he may never be able to properly express his hope to join George and Lennie on the journey to turn their dreams into a reality. This is why the word nigger is the most signifigant word used in chapter four of the novella Of Mice and

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