Of Mice and Men

Symbolism in Chapter 4

What do the characters, Crooks, Curley's wife, and Candy symbolize in chapter 4. Also, what other kinds of symbolism are found in chapter 4?

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All these characters are weak. They and Lennie have been left behind while the strong ones go out to have fun on Saturday night. Candy is old and crippled, Lennie is mentally challenged, Crooks is black and crippled, and the wife is female. In this novel, the weak are disposed of--consider the old sheepdog, the smallest puppies, the mouse in Lennie's pocket.

Pay special attention to each character's attempts to take the upper hand, i.e. to appear strong. Crooks messes with Lennie's head, Candy threatens the wife, and the wife threatens Crooks. But at the end of the chapter, everybody is exactly where s/he started. Nothing has changed.

Notice also the rattling of the chains in the barn. Pay attention to when it happens and when it doesn't.

What does symbolise mean>? Someone please explain to me (with egs if pos!!) My teacher says it can make a big difference to marks in the exam...

Isn't sybolism where something specific in in a story could represent a bigger issue? Like (for example) Lennie could symbolise Hope in the American Dream and the character of George could symbolise the pessimism and cynicism at the time? Any other ideas?

Isn't sybolism where something specific in in a story could represent a bigger issue? Like (for example) Lennie could symbolise Hope in the American Dream and the character of George could symbolise the pessimism and cynicism at the time? Any other ideas anyone of y'all out there? Not sure what Curley's wife could be meant to represent, or Curley either.

Curleys wife may symbolize the unfair treatment of women in the early 1930's. curleys wife was treat with no respect and often near cruelty. she had to always fight to be heard and to gain some attention and maybe respect, but would go about it the wrong way to the extream.

Curly's wife is another one of the lonely people in the story. She doesn't fit in. Look at her, she lives on a farm, she is a farmer's wife, but she is totally out of place. I don't think Steinbeck was thinking of women's rights when he wrote her into the story (that is the tricky thing about symbols). She is one of the lonely, out of place people. I think the reason she doesn't have a name is because of the relationship she has with the ranch hands. (They don't even want to know her name because for them, she is trouble.) It's just a thought.

Curleys wife doesnt have a name because she is considered a possession. She has two different sides to her. Theres the firty side and the lonely side. She is lonely because she is the only woman on the ranch who is married to a man she doesnt love. And she is flirtty because she takes the advantage of being the only woman on the ranch, to flirt with the other men. But she is also self obsessed just like Curley. Crooks is a crippled black stable hand who gets treated with no respect. They refer to him as the nigro stable hand. The reason he is lonely was because the Jim Crow Laws were made and all blacks were treated unfairly.