Asked in Of Mice and Men
How does Steinbeck present prejudice in 'Of Mice and Men' commenting on the impact that this has on the audience with particular reference to Chapter four and the character 'Crooks'?
Crooks is called N word not because Steinbeck and the other characters are racist, but to show the discrimination against black people during the 1930s. Without realising it, the characters seperate Crooks verbally by calling him this.
Crooks is the only person who does not share a room with the other men; instead he has his own room, which he shares with the horses. This is because during 1930s America, segregation was still used. The audience will see that Crooks is purposely made lonely because of the colour of his skin.
Crooks has a Civil Rights book because he wants to know his rights on the ranch. Steinbeck is showing that during the time period, black people did not have many rights and the little rights they did have mattered greatly to them. The fact that he also has a book shows he is educated, allowing the audience to see that although some black people during 1930s America were educated, they still had some of the worst jobs and worst living conditions. Also, because he has many books in his room, including a dictionary, it shows the reader that instead of hanging out with all the other ranch workers, he spends time alone reading. This amplifies his loneliness to the audience.