When in a destitute situation, loneliness is one of the worst feelings there is. In the fictional novella Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck emphasizes the need of friendship, but more importantly, how loneliness ultimately bestows on certain characters. Due to the global phenomenon of the Great Depression, which instituted low income and excessive tax rates, life on the ranch was difficult and sluggish. Nevertheless, some characters establish meaningful friendships which allow them to depend on each other and pursue the same dream. In contrast, Curley’s wife is subjected to loneliness because of her gender and misunderstanding from the men.
Curley’s wife, being the only female personality on the ranch, is frequently isolated from the others due to sexist tendencies. At the time, women were perceived as inferior to men, resulting in a substantial amount of discrimination towards women. In order to show that the men left on the ranch are undervalued, Curley’s wife impulsively states that “They left all the weak ones here” (92). Although she is not wrong, it is clear that she is also seen as a weaker figure by virtue of her gender. Nonetheless, that wasn’t the only thing standing between Curley’s wife and comradeship with the others. The other obstacle she has to deal with is her own psychotic husband. Curley’s wife displays her submissiveness to her husband when she mentions that, “You can talk to people, but I can’t talk to nobody but Curley”(87). As Curley’s wife seeks to befriend the other men, Curley is suspicious that she is attempting to get with Slim, who does not dread Curley in any aspect. While it makes her feel mad, due to the fact that Curley is always watching over her, she doesn’t seem to do anything, due to the lack of power she has against Curley. Therefore, Curley’s wife is not authorized by her husband to chat with the others, despite it going against what she desires. On behalf of being the only woman on the ranch and the inequality of genders, Curley’s wife is susceptible to solitude.
When it comes to being associated with the others, Curley’s wife’s technique is not the most ideal. She assumes a flirtatious approach to most of the men in hopes of grasping their attention. In order to clarify that she is open to companionship, the novel states, “She put her hand behind her back and leaned against the door frame so that her body is thrown forward”(31). It is apparent that Curley’s wife has an extroverted personality on account of her exasperating poses and her excessive amount of makeup. Though her desperate need for attention from the men, they distinguish her as a tramp. Likewise, Curley’s wife undertakes subtle movements to the extent of obtaining recognition. George puts forward that Curley’s wife is only, “Married two weeks and already got the eye”(28). Seeing that Curley’s wife has hooked Lennie in with her appearance. The glimpse in Curley’s wife’s eyes exhibits a sly interest towards the men. Still, it is apparent that she has a husband; thus the men ignore difficulty with her. Although Curley’s wife is making an effort to talk to the men, it seems to alert them to withdraw from her space.
Outstanding to her gender and misunderstanding from the others, Curley’s wife is avoided and discriminated against. She is repeatedly left out from activities with the others on account of being a woman. Furthermore, the men on the ranch misinterpret her when she wishes for someone to talk to. However, it is not Curley’s wife’s fault that the men on the ranch refrain from associating with her. They misconceive her, concerning that she is married to their boss’s son and that she is a woman. Everybody should be given an impartial chance, regardless of their gender, appearance, race, or ethnicity. Representation should not be defined by status, but by who they ultimately choose to be.