Q. Explore the ways in which Steinbeck shows how loneliness affects the relationship between Curley’s wife and the men on the ranch in “Of Mice and Men.”
Curley's wife's loneliness has changed her attitude towards others greatly, making her overtly insecure and excessively flirtatious. John Steinbeck shows in the book, Of Mice and Men, how poor lifestyles were. They have few possessions, fewer comforts, no chance of happy marriage or family life and no place of their own. This all leads to the path of loneliness. The men on the ranch avoid her because of flirtatious personality to keep out of trouble. No one understands her situation and how loneliness affects her. I will be writing how this affects the relationship between Curley’s wife and the men on the ranch.
We first hear about Curley's Wife when Candy describes her to George. Candy uses expressions such as, "she got the eye" and goes on to explain the way she looks at other men before eventually calling her a, “tart.” Through Candy's words, we develop an instant opinion of Curley's Wife as flirtatious. This perception is further emphasized by Curley's Wife's first appearance in the novel. Steinbeck uses light symbolically to show that she can be imposing when he writes, "The rectangle of sunshine in the doorway was cut off." She both talks and acts playfully and flirtatiously in front of the other ranch workers. Through her physical appearance and her own actions, Candy's description of Curley's Wife seems accurate after her first appearance in the text.
Curley’s wife is portrayed throughout the whole novel as mysterious. An obvious example of this would be her lack of a name. She is continually referred to as a possession of her husband and without a name she becomes insignificant. The author however, drops hints throughout the book telling his audience that there may be more to Curley’s wife than what is easily presumed.
Our negative feelings toward Curley's Wife begin to change when she enters...