Discuss the significance of the outsider in the novel ‘Of Mice and Guys’ An outsider is somebody who is not accepted or is separated from society. ‘Of Mice and Guys’ is set in the 1930’s, where society thought about lots of people as outsiders. Throughout this period, lots of people were racist, sexist and prejudice towards disabled individuals.
This is shown with a number of characters in the unique including Crooks, Curly’s other half and Candy who are all thought about as outsiders in this novel, since they each had something that the society at that time were bias towards. In the 1930’s black individuals were highly discriminated against.
This was primarily because numerous black people began to migrate form the south to the north in order to find employment. Numerous blacks looked to establish their own areas, businesses and restaurants. All this activity caused competitors to grow with the whites currently living in these areas and many white people weren’t utilized to black individuals residing in their community and this triggered a lot of stress in between whites and blacks. Moreover, since of the Great Depression lots of people lost their jobs and needed to discover new jobs, and the blacks who had actually migrated up north, started to take available jobs.
The white individuals residing in the north blew up that the blacks were taking control of their positions. The character Criminals from the unique, is an old black male with a misaligned back. He is most likely the most victimized since he is black and disabled, which suggests he can’t do as much work as the other. He works as a steady buck at the ranch, however although he has a job, we can presume that he gets the lowest wage on the cattle ranch because he is black. This is displayed in the unique given that he doesn’t have a correct bed; instead he has ‘a long box filled with straw, on which blankets were flung. This is most likely because of his low social status and for that reason does not get the like the other workers on the farm, which includes a correct bed. In addition he is apart kind the other employees, given that he resides in ‘in the harness space; a little shed that leaned off the wall of the barn’ instead of in the employees room, like the remainder of the workers. Criminals himself shows this when he says “I ain’t wanted in the bunk home … ‘Cause I’m black”. Again, this is probably because of his low social status, and due to the fact that of this he is excluded from the rest of he employees.
We are revealed simply how low his social status is when we discover he must share his medicine with the animals, “a variety of medicine bottles, both for himself and for the horses”. This shows us due to the fact that of his skin colour, he needs to utilize what is readily available, instead of having his own possessions, which he is nearly equal to an animal, in the eyes of the society. Scoundrels frequently imitates he does not desire anyone in his area, for instance when Lennie enters his space he says, ‘You have actually got no right can be found in my room. This here’s my room.’ He acts like this since he feels that if he isn’t aloud in the white people’s homes, they should not be aloud in his.
Nevertheless his desire for business ultimately wins out when he invites Lennie in his room. Likewise when Candy enters into his space, Steinbeck informs us ‘It was difficult for Scoundrels to hide his satisfaction with anger.’ This reveals us that although Crooks wishes to imitate he doesn’t desire people coming into his space, he really is happy when people talk with him, because he is an outsider and doesn’t have any company. Another character who is thought about an outsider in the novel is Sweet’s partner. In the novel, she is never provided a name and this is most likely since she has no value in society.
During Steinbeck’s time, women were not kept in high regard, but were simply present to serve males. Curly’s wife is ignored by Curly and due to the fact that of this she is always looking for attention. This is shown by the method she dresses with ‘Red mules’ and ‘Bouquets of red ostrich feathers’. She is ‘heavily comprised’ and has actually ‘rouged lips’ and ‘her fingernails were red’. Steinbeck uses this images to represent her as provocative, since red was a really provocative colour in this period. She gowns like this since she knows her charm is her only power in this society and is they only method to get attention, which she doesn’t get form Curly.
Nevertheless, by trying to get the attention of other men, she steps outside her function as a married women, and this is most likely why she is often called a ‘tramp’ or a ‘tart’. Straight away George senses that she is problem and says ‘You keep away from her, trigger’ she’s a rattrap if I ever seen one.’ George understands that Curly would be extremely angry if he captured one of the guys flirting back with her, however not since he is jealous but since he see’s his wife as his home, rather than an individual, and this is probably another reason she is named as Curly’s wife.
Just like Crooks, since she is an outsider, Curly’s better half is looking for constantly trying to find company and the perfect chance to talk with somebody is when goes Curly is out with the employees. All who are left are ‘the weak ones’-herself, Candy, Crooks and Lennie. She even states it herself- ‘Standin’ here talkin’ to a bunch of bindle stiffs-a nigger an’ a dum-dum and a poor ol’ sheep-an’ likin’ it due to the fact that they ain’t nobody else’. However, she is so desperate for friendship that she speaks to them anyway.
She is ‘breathing highly, as though she had actually been running’; again this reveals us simply how desperate and lonely she is as an outsider. In addition, Candy is another character who can be considered as an outsider. He is an old man, left with just one hand as the result of an accident at work. Because of his disability he can not do the labour that the others do, therefore has a demeaning task as a ‘swamper’- the man who cleans out the bunk house. We understand he is old, given that when Steinbeck first introduces him, he explains him with great deals of words that reveal him to be old and weak, such as ‘old man’ and ‘stoop shouldered’.
He often uses great deals of anecdotes which show that he remises on the past, like lots of old people do and that he has actually been on the ranch a very long time. Likewise, he frequently duplicates himself, which reveals that his memory is weakening and he is aging. Candy knows that he is getting weaker, which soon his manager will quickly declare him as worthless and he will lose his job- ‘They’ll can be pretty soon. Jus’ as quickly as I can’t overload out say goodbye to bunk houses they’ll put me on the county.’ Due to the fact that he can’t pay for to lose his task he does not challenge anything.
When they shoot his canine, considering that it’s too old, he feels even lonelier considering that his canine was his only real friend. Also it advises him that when he becomes old, he will no longer be required. Candy even says to George, ‘you seen what they done to my canine tonight? They says he wasn’t no excellent to himself or no one else. When they can me here I wisht somebody ‘d shoot me to.’ He states this because without a task he will have nowhere to go given that due to the fact that of his age, special needs and the Depression he can’t get another task.
Sweet is left out from the workers social life by his age, his special needs and his demeaning job, but also by his own option-‘I didn’t go in there. I ain’t got no poop no more.’ He understands he is too old to interact socially and this makes him an outsider because he can’t do what the other workers do because he is too old. In conclusion, I think Steinbeck uses outsiders, such as Candy, Crooks and Curly’s other half, to attempt to reveal the discrimination versus gender, race, age and impairment in 1930’s society and how it impacted the life’s of outsiders of 1930’s society.