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What are the themes in Of Mice and Men? Show more Show less
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John Steinbeck's timeless novel, Of Mice and Men, is a piece of literature that many teens encounter in high school. It explores the story of two migrant workers during the Great Depression. What are the central themes of the novel?

Of Mice and Men is about prejudice Show more Show less

George remarks that he used to play mean-spirited pranks on Lennie. Also, Crooks (an African-American man on the ranch with them) is often the target of racism and isolation.
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Crooks' life on the farm

Crooks is the only African-American man living on the ranch. He is often subject to racist attitudes and actions of other men living on the ranch.

The Argument

As the only African-American man on the ranch, Crooks is subject to treatment that all the other men working with him aren't. He is often called a "n****r" by Curley and the rest of his peers. He stays in a room separate from the rest of the ranch workers (who are all white). During an encounter with Lennie (in which Lennie states that he doesn't understand why Crooks is treated differently), Crooks is forced to explain why he remains separate from the majority of those on the farm and why he's grown to like it that way. While he is only in the novel for a short amount of time, Crooks' powerful testimony about the racism on the ranch aids the reader in understanding that even among working-class people, there are still strong prejudices held against those who are different. This interaction also helps connect the mistreatment he faces with the mistreatment that Lennie faces.

Counter arguments

Proponents

Premises

[P1] Crooks is segregated and mistreated on the Ranch. [P2] Crooks' mistreatment on the ranch serves as a testament to how prejudice exists, even among the working-class.

Rejecting the premises

References

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    This page was last edited on Wednesday, 13 May 2020 at 04:59 UTC

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